In a recent development, Google has announced that in an effort to support high-quality journalism and to help enable journalists to utilize digital tools better for news and facts collection; the company has collaborated with the Centre for Investigative Journalism (CIJ) to develop a new program called “Access to Tools.”
Journalism is an art, and news gathering from millions and millions of data from the digital world is a no easy task. One of the key aspects of Journalism is the in-depth investigation. Journalists rely on a number of digital techniques for these investigative works like identifying the original source of a photograph, sniffing up the minute details of a public meeting on a local website or even something as simple as analyzing data on a shared spreadsheet.
Around 20 free workshops will be organized by a team of expert trainers across the U.K. over the next few months. These workshops are aimed to assist and hone freelance and newsroom journalists to improve and sharpen their digital news gathering and research skills. These practical workshops will also be a platform where different providers will showcase their news hunting technologies and include real-life examples, including how individual journalists have traced original sources. Google will also support the CIJ to host a conference in Northern England for the first time, offering advanced skills for journalists living and working outside of London.
Founded in 2003, The CIJ offers real expertise in investigative journalism standards and shares the Google News Initiative’s ambition to widen access to tools and training.
Our leading concern is to put the best tools in the hands of investigative journalists, and then grow their expertise in using them. Building on our 15 years of expertise in data journalism, advanced internet research, financial search, and internet-powered fact-checking and our relationships of trust with the corporate and independent local media, ‘Access to Tools’ is the perfect way to extend the already impressive reach of our regional network and to get out there into more regional newsrooms, communities, and universities. – James Harkin, The director of the CIJ
With a lot of collaboration in talks with CIJ in the near future, Google also promises to provide a free range of training workshops to newsrooms and journalism schools. Since the launch of News Lab back in 2015, Google has trained nearly 7 thousand journalists in the U.K alone. Google News Initiative Training Center even has a specific course on Investigative Reporting, where interested participants can sign up to further level up their skills.
More information about the free U.K. workshops can be found on the CIJ website.