Project description

I’m a data journalist at The Economist Newspaper working from their London head office. In March 2018, after 18 months as their data journalism and social media fellow, I was rewarded with a permanent position as data journalist on the data team. My portfolio demonstrates my varied skill set and my unique approach to data, commitment to the data journalism community and the unique ideas I’ve brought to it in order to make data journalism stand out on social media.

I cover a variety of topics for The Economist. My portfolio shows that I have expertise in a range of subjects and feel comfortable writing about many different data-related topics, from light-hearted pieces about house plants to more serious issues such as sexual harassment and politics in Germany. I often cover recent research—an area that remains woefully uncovered by most data outlets. My journalism often gets featured in industry newsletters, is widely shared on social media and sets the agenda for other outlets.

As data journalism is still a relatively new field, I think it’s important to work together, collaborate and communicate across different newsrooms, which is why I share my experiences and the insights I gather in my unique role in Medium articles, on Twitter or in guest lectures and industry talks. Over the past year I’ve been invited to give guest lectures at Goldsmiths College, Brunel University and King’s College to teach the next generation of data journalists and help them find their way in the industry. In summer 2018 I taught a workshop at the European Data and Computational Journalism conference in Cardiff and spoke at many other industry events and international conferences in the UK and abroad. In addition I co-host London’s D3.js meet-up that my colleague Martín González revived and I started a data journalism meet-up between The Economist, The Times and The Financial Times. I talk about topics such as the basics of data journalism, data visualisations on social media and careers in data journalism.

What makes this project innovative?

My work sets me apart from other data journalists, as I have entered the field in such a unique way—I realised there was a lack of innovation in how we promote data journalism on social media and have since worked on improving this. I have a background in computing and journalism and have used this crossover of experiences to create my own unique role and fill a niche in the industry. I have brought the open data or open source approach to my other work by sharing not just my own knowledge on Medium, Twitter and at events but also by commissioning and editing Medium articles from members of The Economist’s data team. Their articles give a unique insight into how our data team works. All of these pieces are immensely successful and one has been the most popular behind the scenes of last year. And the most recent article has already topped the most successful article from last year in all measures (views, claps, reading time etc). Beyond that journalism remains dominated by men, and so does data. I report a lot on gender and equality—topics that don’t get the coverage they deserve. As a young woman and immigrant I often bring a unique perspective to my work, and cover topics that other data journalists would miss. I hope to inspire young female journalists with my work and demonstrate in guest lectures that women can be successful at the intersection of computing and journalism.

What was the impact of your project? How did you measure it?

My journalism often gets featured in industry newsletters, is shared widely on social media (most recently my article about Generation Z was retweeted by Richard Branson) and sets the agenda for other outlets. My pieces have been picked up by BBC Newsbeat, The Telegraph, talkRadio and more. My article about the research into the motherhood penalty inspired similar pieces in the US, the UK, Germany and beyond for Women’s Day. Most of my articles receive hundreds of retweets and attract a disproportionately large audience on other platforms such as Facebook.

Source and methodology

The data for these stories comes from a variety of sources. They include research papers and academics, our own survey with YouGov, Google Trends and data from public organisations. I used a variety of tools and languages to scrape and/or analyse the data, and a visual data journalist creates the charts for my stories.

Technologies Used

R, Illustrator, Python, Photoshop, Excel, Google Sheets

Project members

The Economist Data Team


Additional links


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