Using European Data in Journalism

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Presenter: Caelainn Barr


Short bio: Caelainn Barr headed up the European data research team at the London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism on a joint investigation with the FT into European structural funds. The team produced the first and only centralised fund database to reveal the abuse of tax-payers’ money by the Mafia, multinational corporations and property developers. The results were published by the Financial Times and aired by BBC Radio 4 and Al Jazeera. She has also used data analysis to uncover the misuse of expenses by the European Commission and human rights abuses in Ethiopia.


Abstract: The European Union is awash with numbers. Data about how european citizens live and our taxes are spent are widely available - the challenge lies in using them. Figures are published on a centralised, national and regional basis with little in common. Data formats, presentation and quality vary greatly. How can we use this information as citizens and journalists to understand the union and generate stories? Why should journalists and developers work together to look at European data? Using practical and live examples of data use including commission expenses and structural funds we will demonstrate how to get EU data, how to prepare it for analysis, the trends to look out for and how to translate it into a story.

Editor: Kateřina Kamrádková
Last modified: 10.9. 2012 16:09  
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