Gathering data: a flow chart for data journalists

Gathering data - a flow chart

Above is a flow chart that I sketched out during a long car journey to the Balkan Investigative Reporters Network Summer School in Croatia (don’t worry: I wasn’t driving).

It aims to help those doing data journalism identify how best to get hold of and deal with data by asking a series of questions about the information you want to compile and making suggestions on ways both to get hold of it and tools to then get it into a state which makes it easier to ask questions.

It also illustrates at a glance how the process of ‘getting hold of the data’ can vary widely, and how different projects can often involve completely different tools and skillsets from previous ones.

I will have missed obvious things, so please help me improve this. And if you find it useful, let me know.

Click on the image for other sizes.


9 thoughts on “Gathering data: a flow chart for data journalists

  1. Ian

    Thanks Paul – that looks like a really useful aide-memoire, especially when I’ve run into dead-ends with my own methods.

    Best wishes

  2. Pingback: Addition: p52 Finding data « Online Journalism Handbook

  3. Ed

    Thanks for doing this!

    On the “Results from empty search? > No > Needlebase/Scraperwiki” section, you may want to delete Needlebase since it is about to be retired. But, since the folks at Outwit Hub have added a POST function, and you can generate query matrices in Outwit Hub, perhaps it should be included in this section?

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