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Transparency and Investigative Reporting Workshop set for February 2019

FULLERTON, Calif. – InquireFirst is organizing a five-day Transparency and Investigative Reporting workshop in Southern California from February 25-March 1, 2019. This regional workshop will provide training for 20-25 journalists from countries throughout Latin America and the Spanish-speaking Caribbean on the use of emerging technology to conduct investigative journalism.

We see this regional workshop as an opportunity to introduce some of the most experienced investigative reporters in Latin America to prominent U.S. investigative journalists who will lead sessions on conducting well-sourced, objective investigative reporting that contributes to transparency in government.

This workshop will provide professional development in key areas such as 1) finding new sources of verifiable information when official channels of information are closed; 2) specialized interview techniques to handle sensitive questioning in areas such as corruption, money laundering and narcotics smuggling; 3) information disorder and a skill-building session on verification of information; 4) data journalism training and 5) cyber security.

We'll be holding the workshop on the California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) campus, where InquireFirst Vice President and former New York Times senior editor Walter Baranger is a journalism professor.  Inez Gonzalez, Director of the Latino Communications Institute at CSUF is enthusiastic about collaborating with us on this program, as is the Latino Journalist Club. Our host is the College of Communications at CSUF.

We anticipate this workshop will equip a team of Latin American journalists with investigative skills to produce deeply reported and carefully fact-checked investigative reports that lead to greater transparency in their countries.  The workshop will also help build professional alliances between journalists and their media organizations that will encourage cross-border reporting on high-impact regional investigative stories.

 

In Collaboration With

 

InquireFirst board member and health care expert Rosemary Gibson engaged in an in-depth interview on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour about her recently published book, “China Rx: Exposing the Risks of America’s Dependence on China for Medicine.”

Radio host Ralph Nader said Gibson’s meticulously researched book outlines how U.S. dependence on China for medications represents “a clear and present danger to the American people.”

“Our listeners should be notified that this is going to alarm them,” Nader said when introducing Gibson’s work to his audience. “Right now, more and more of the medicines in our country are imported from China and India.

“You argue very convincingly, Rosemary, that there’s a national security problem here,” Nader told Gibson. “And secondly, to put it mildly, the inspection level by the FDA of these labs in China is non-existent, confused or very rare.”

Listen to Ralph Nader’s interview with Rosemary Gibson.

 

 

 

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Executive Director Lynne Walker to instruct investigative reporting workshops in Ecuador

InquireFirst Executive Director Lynne Walker will travel to Ecuador in January 2019 to instruct a series of workshops on investigative journalism and journalist safety.

Walker will meet with journalists in the capital of Quito and in Guayaquil to lead sessions designed to provide tools and techniques for investigative reporting in areas ranging from corruption and organized crime to environmental investigative journalism.

The workshops will focus on identifying credible sources and fact checking as the backbone of investigative reporting.

During the intensive, two-day sessions, Walker will also discuss safety protocols with Ecuadoran journalists, who have witnessed recent deadly attacks on colleagues investigating organized crime.

Three Ecuadoran journalists with the Quito daily newspaper El Comercio were kidnapped and murdered earlier this year by Colombian rebels.

Reporter Javier Ortega, photographer Paul Rivas and driver Efrain Segarra were kidnapped on March 26 while investigating heightened violence in Esmeraldas, a province on Ecuador’s 364-mile border with Colombia.

The region has long been a zone of operation for Colombian drug traffickers and rebel groups and has recently become the site of a series of attacks against military targets.

The Ecuadoran government said the journalists were kidnapped by a holdout faction of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, the leftist rebel group that laid down its weapons and became a political party in 2016 after signing a peace accord with the Colombia government.

The murders of the three journalists in this country of 17 million stunned the people of Ecuador and shook their long-held perception of Ecuador as a tiny, peaceful country insulated from the drug violence that has plagued neighboring Colombia.

 


New opportunities for Latin American reporters and editors announced during Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop

Juan Francisco Ealy Ortiz (right) owner and publisher of the Mexico City daily El Universal, greets Gemi José González, Consul General of Mexico in San Francisco, at the opening ceremony of the Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop at Stanford University. Photo by El Universal/Germán Espinosa

PALO ALTO, Calif. – Latin American science journalists were presented with a host of new professional development opportunities during the Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop at Stanford University.

The June 17-21, 2018 workshop, organized by InquireFirst and Mexico City-based Fundación Ealy Ortiz, focused on training opportunities – with Latin American science journalists as both participants and instructors – as well as steps to form a regional science journalism network.

Juan Francisco Ealy Ortiz, owner and publisher of the Mexico City daily newspaper El Universal, announced that he is establishing a multi-platform “high-impact” science section with “the highest standards for content and selection of infographics.”

Ealy Ortiz also announced that he is forming an Institute for Science Journalism and International Training which will be headed by Enrique Bustamante, who also serves as director of Fundación Ealy Ortiz. The Institute will offer training to science journalists, researchers, scientists and science communicators, he said.

Ealy Ortiz said he will be providing travel fellowships for Latin American and Caribbean science journalists to attend the 2019 World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ) in Lausanne, Switzerland.

(Journalists can find more information about WCSJ2019 at this website: https://bit.ly/2N4JPiP)

Rosalind Reid, executive director of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writers, also announced fellowship opportunities that will support the participation by Latin American and Caribbean journalists in ScienceWriters 2018, a regional forum for science journalists organized by the National Association of Science Writers that will be held Oct. 12-16, 2018, in Washington D.C.

Iván Carrillo, anchor of TV Azteca's Los Observadores science program, was named editor of a multi-platform, high-impact section to be launched in upcoming months by Mexico's largest newspaper, El Universal. Photo courtesy of El Universal/ Germán Espinosa

The deadline to apply is July 17. Latin American and Caribbean journalists can find information about the travel fellowship at this website: https://bit.ly/2lHmR4x

Reid conducted a discussion during the Ealy Science Journalism workshop with Latin American reporters and editors on ways that U.S. and international organizations can support the growing cadre of science journalists in the region.

Among the measures suggested by Latin American journalists were:

  • Workshops that offer environmental investigative journalism training
  • Workshops specificially designed for science journalists who report for television audiences
  • Workshop sessions on effective ways to pitch editors on science, health and environment stories
  • A workshop on how to report on breaking environmental/health stories such as a global outbreak of an epidemic
  • Cross-border reporting initiatives to share resources and increase the impact of science, health and environment stories and
  • A website that gives higher visibility to science journalists by publishing and promoting the best Spanish-language reports in Latin America and the Caribbean

Dawn E. Garcia, director of the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowships (JSK) at Stanford University, urged Latin American science journalists to apply for the prestigious fellowship which provides a stipend to journalists to work on projects while they study at Stanford for the 10-month academic year.

Garcia noted that at least one of the 20 annual fellowships is designated for a Latin American journalist. Yet few journalists from Mexico or other Spanish-speaking countries in Latin America apply for a Knight fellowship. The majority of the Latin American applicants are from Brazil, she said.

Journalists can learn more about the Knight Fellowships at on the JSK website:

https://stanford.io/2KsXn62

 

Drilling Down on America's Water Supply

Will the United States continue to be a country where people can turn on the tap and assume the water that comes out is safe and affordable? In this, the first major report in InquireFirst’s long-term drinking water project, reporter Elizabeth Douglass travels to Lake Station, Indiana, to begin answering that question by exploring the growing pressure on cities and towns to privatize their municipal drinking water systems.

View photos by John Nelson/InquireFirst


2019 Symposiums

InquireFirst Executive Director S. Lynne Walker will organize and instruct journalism symposiums in 2019 on investigative reporting and safety protocols, digital storytelling and science, health and environment coverage in Mexico, Central America, South America and the Caribbean. The symposiums will be presented in Spanish.


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July 1, 2019
Lausanne, Switzerland
Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop

The 2019 Latin American Edition of the Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop will bring together reporters and editors for a professional development workshop to present practical, hands-on training sessions to sharpen reporting skills on the most pressing science, health and environmental issues in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Journalists attending the workshop will engage in interactive sessions to discuss subjects such as building international partnerships to enrich science coverage, finding funding for science reporting, and making complex global science, health and environmental stories relevant for local audiences.

Data journalism experts will demonstrate digital tools for making complex data accessible to audiences on a wide range of topics such as biodiversity, climate change, environmental policy and public health. Reporters and editors attending the workshop will discuss techniques for connecting with the global scientific community as well as effective ways of obtaining information from research institutions and organizations.

A special focus of the Jack F. Ealy Science Journalism Workshop will be on establishing a platform to encourage reporters, photographers, videographers and filmmakers to build on professional relationships established during 2019 World Conference of Science Journalists and collaborate across the region to produce in-depth, international reporting on global science stories.

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February 25-March 1, 2019
Fullerton, California
Transparency and Investigative Reporting

As reporters across the Western Hemisphere are facing threats to their credibility and to their safety, this workshop organized and directed by InquireFirst for Latin American and Caribbean journalists will offer sessions on investigative reporting and interview techniques, as well as fact-checking, journalism ethics and journalist safety. The workshop, which will be conducted on the California State University, Fullerton campus in Southern California, will provide training on data research and the use of low-cost and no-cost software for investigative reporting.

Latin American journalists have asked us to include content on preparing investigative reports in video formats and for television networks which have special demands because of time limitations and the need for on-camera interviews. Because Cal State Fullerton is home to the regional Univision station, speakers from Univision will work with journalists, as well as hosting a visit to the Univision newsroom.

Many of the sessions will be taught by prominent U.S. journalists, some of whom have been awarded prestigious national awards for their investigative reporting. We anticipate that this workshop will equip a team of Latin American journalists with investigative skills to produce deeply reported and carefully fact-checked investigative reports that lead to greater transparency in their countries.

 

Ecuador
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January 14-18, 2019
Guayaquil and Quito, Ecuador
Investigative Journalism and Journalist Safety

InquireFirst Executive Director Lynne Walker will travel to Ecuador in January 2019 to instruct a series of workshops on investigative journalism and journalist safety.
Walker will meet with journalists in Guayaquil and in the capital of Quito to lead sessions designed to provide tools and techniques for investigative reporting in areas ranging from corruption and organized crime to environmental investigative journalism.
The workshops will focus on identifying credible sources and fact checking as the backbone of investigative reporting.
During the intensive, two-day sessions, Walker will also discuss safety protocols with Ecuadoran journalists, who have witnessed recent deadly attacks on colleagues investigating organized crime.