Project description

During 2018 our newsroom published seven data driven articles. We have picked three of them as the most influential, interesting and having the highest impact on the audience.

1. Project tells the story about one of the main social-economic issue of Kyrgyzstan. The article is about labor migrants, contribution of their remittances to the country’s economy and, most importantly, the article describes the inefficient spending patterns of these remittances within Kyrgyzstan. Although, the country ranked number one in the world by ration of remittances to GDP (38%), the majority of them are being consumed and spend on “toi” – huge celebrations of weddings, child births and even car purchases. This project is a beautiful combination of open data analysis and human stories.
2. Project touches upon one of the most vulnerable and sensitive issues not only in Kyrgyzstan, but in Central Asia, – gender equality. Persistent cultural norms, patriarchal views and women abusive stereotypes lead to the fact that women spend quarter of their daily time doing unpaid housework, while men spend on that only 5% of their daily time. The situation is even worse in rural areas. The project is a combination of video, narrative and a poster. In video we reconstruct the average day of the working couple – even both spouses work, women continue working, but unpaid, when returning home, while men enjoy more leisure. In the narrative and a poster we provide fact-sheet of data-based differences between women and men in terms of their time spend on chores and how it affects their life-being. For example, one of the consequences is that women have less economic and education opportunities – less than half of working age females are employed, and their salaries are 30% less than males’.
3. Project investigates the rough justice in Kyrgyzstan. Starting from 2010, Kyrgyzstan has been attempting to conduct reforms aimed at improving the judicial system. However, experts believe that the judicial system in Kyrgyzstan is still rather punitive and draconian – it does not correct the people’s behavior, but punish the accused ones. Our research is based on the open source data provided by the Supreme Court of the Kyrgyz Republic. Five years ago, a website was launched, where each of court is obliged to publish the materials of the court cases, that have been reviewed by the courts. To date over 160,000 cases have been uploaded online, including the description of the crimes and final court decisions. We have scraped the data from this website and created a database of different type of court cases, including criminal, civil, administrative etc. Our findings suggest that out of criminal cases there are over than 96% of convictions and the majority of convictions are for drug users. There is a little proportion of acquittals, and the majority of which are made for government officials (i.e. for taking bribes).

What makes this project innovative?

All of the thee projects are innovative in a sense that those are the first ever data-driven articles not only in the country, but in the region. The development of data-journalism in Kyrgyzstan is rather slow. Up until 2018, the majority of the articles on the above related topics, were either just telling the human stories, copy-pasting press releases or republishing of expert opinions and opinions of international donors. The above articles are the first ones to tell the story in an engaging, comprehensive way to the broader audience. Therefore, we have been honored to receive the following acknowledgements for all of our three articles from journalism community and civil society. Project one was featured in the “2018 reporting highlights from around the world” by the International Journalists’ Network, along with Washington Post, The New Yourk Times, OCCRP, Meduza etc: Project two entered Global Investigative Journalism Network’s GIJN’s Data Journalism Top 10: After the Project 3’s article was published, the civil society demanded to organize the public discussion on the effectiveness of judicial system with representatives of the Supreme court, human rights activists, Ombudsman and journalists. The link to the video of public discussion: Project one and three were translated into English and German languages by other media (we attach links to the translated articles, so that the jury could get a full impression from them). We have provided subtitles for Project 2's video (see the link below). Please kindly click 'subtitles' icon to see them.

What was the impact of your project? How did you measure it? is one of the few independent media outlets in Kyrgyzstan, and its audience is fewer compared to the large national media outlets. Therefore we were very happy to achieve the following results with each of our projects reaching the broad audience and getting so many responses. Project 1. Published: August 23, 2018. i) Average time on page – 3 minutes 30 seconds – versus the average across materials, published since August 23, 2019, which is 1 minute 35 seconds. ii) 9 (ninth) place by unique page views among 730 articles that were published during August 23, 2018 – March 31, 2019. iii) 1090 reactions, comments and shares on Facebook page*, out of which 216 shares. Project 2. Published February 8, 2019. i) Average time on page – 2 minutes 10 seconds – versus average across materials, published since February 8, 2019, which is 1 minute 36 seconds. ii) 10 (tenth) place by unique page views among 151 articles that were published during February 8, 2019 – March 31, 2019. iii) 2044 reactions, comments and shares on Facebook page*, out of which 410 shares. Project 3. Published December 7, 2019. i) Average time on page – 4 minutes 27 seconds – versus the average across materials, published since December 7, 2019, which is 1 minute 31 seconds ii) 46 (forty sixths) place by unique page views among 454 articles that were published during Decembert 7, 2018 – March 31, 2019. iii) 566 reactions, comments and shares on Facebook page*, out of which 138 shares. *The average number of reactions, comments and shares for Facebook page’s links is 442, out which the average number of shares is 69.

Source and methodology

Project 1. Data sources*: i) National Statistical Committee of the Kyrgyz Republic. URL: ii) National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic. URL: iii) Migration and Development Brief 29, April 2018. URL: iv) World Development Indicators, World Bank. URL: v) Multi-topic longitudinal survey of households and individuals "Life in Kyrgyzstan". URL: Project 1. Methodology: Summary statistics, analysis of trends and dynamics Project 2. Data sources: I) National Statistical Committee of the Kyrgyz Republic. URL: Project 2. Methodology. We transformed data into open dataset. The dataset contains distribution of time (in minutes) spent on daily life duties (chores, work, leisure) disaggregated by gender, areas, regions, marital and occupational statuses, age etc. We did the cross sectional data analysis, in order to calculate the average distribution of time devoted to unpaid housework by women and men. In order to prove the gender differences we estimated the differences between women and men in elasticities of unpaid housework to paid occupation and leisure. The elasticity for women is on average lower than for men (even though, when women start working, they still tend to withdraw less time from unpaid housework than men. This means that working women still devote unequally large amount of time to housework, while men enjoy more leisure). Project 3. Data sources: i) Supreme court of the Kyrgyz Republic. URL: Project 3. Methodology: This project was the most intensive in terms of working with the dataset. i) We scraped the data on every court decision that had been uploaded to the Supreme court’s website. The dataset contains information about the case name and number, case registration data, the Criminal code’s article that is being incriminated, the court decision, conviction or acquittal etc. ii) We cleaned over 26,000 of rows and over 15 of columns of data. iii) We used Pandas, OpenRefine and Excel to analyze data in order to come up with the average number of convictions and their distribution by the Criminal code’s articles. *Every our article contains links to google spreadsheets with datasets and our calculations:

Technologies Used

Scraping data – Python Making open data – Tabula Cleaning data – OpenRefine Analyzing data – Excel, OpenRefine, Pandas Visualization – Datawrapper Many of the other software for creating videos and illustrations.

Project members

Authors: Savia Hasanova, Anna Kapushenko Editors: Dmitry Motinov, Eldiyar Arykbaev Supervisor: Anastasia Valeeva



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