In my last post I wrote about how using feeds and social bookmarking can make for a quicker data journalism workflow. In this second part I look at how to anticipate and prevent problems; and how collaboration can improve data work.
Workflow tip 3. Anticipate problems
A particularly useful habit of successful data journalists is to think ahead in the way you request data. For example, you might want to request basic datasets now that you think you’ll need in future, such as demographic details for local patches.
You might also want to request the ‘data dictionary‘ for key datasets. This lists all the fields used in a particular database. For example, did you know that the police have a database for storing descriptions of suspects? And that one of the fields is shoe size? That could make for quite a quirky story. Continue reading