Tag Archives: guardian

Help Me Investigate in 2013 – and 2014

As Help Me Investigate starts to plan new investigations in 2014, it’s a good time to look back at what we’ve been up to over the last year across the four sites (not including this blog). It’s easy to forget how much you do in a year – thanks to the many contributors who made everything below happen. As always, we’ve learned a lot and hit the new year wiser.

HMI Health

Help Me Investigate Health kicked off the year by organising an event on reporting the new health system with the BBC College of JournalismIn April we took part in and reported on a masterclass on health reporting organised by the National Union of Journalists and in May we spoke at and liveblogged a Medical Journalists Association event on the reorganised NHS.

HSJ logo

HMI Health editor Tom Warren and HMI Education editor Matt Burgess worked with the Health Service Journal to compile a list of FOI emails for clinical commissioning groups – the new bodies controlling health spending.

And we scraped the data that helped Scotland’s Sunday Post report on councils abandoning elderly people because they couldn’t afford the care at home and a 7% increase in absenteeism in Scottish authorities.

We also reported on Barnet, Enfield and Hillingdon referring fewer than 4% of depressed patientsNHS Merseyside spending £65,000 on re-hiring staff who worked for its predecessor, and the worst times to go to A&E in the Midlands. Continue reading

VIDEO: Adrian Goldberg on how running a website helped uncover police surveillance of muslim areas

The Stirrer was an independent news website in Birmingham that investigated a number of local issues in collaboration with local people. One investigation in particular – into the employment of CCTV cameras in largely muslim areas of the city without consultation – was picked up by The Guardian’s Paul Lewis, who discovered its roots in anti-terrorism funds.

The coverage led to an investigation into claims of police misleading councillors, and the eventual halting of the scheme.

As part of a series of interviews for Help Me Investigate, founder Adrian Goldberg – who now presents ‘5 live Investigates‘ and a daily show on BBC Radio WM – talks about his experiences of running the site and how the story evolved from a user’s tip-off.

More of The Guardian, website expenditure, crowdsourcing visualisations and THAT Birmingham City Council website…

Since last week’s blog post, the Guardian, having had the data thrown their way by a couple of freelance journalists at Peopleperhour, have made the website expenditure across all the UK councils public and the data is now available online.

It’s a shame that the link to the Guardian’s Manyeyes visualisation is a broken one, but it’s interesting that they have thrown data out to the audience to crowdsource visualisations and host them on their own Flickr group.

It’s a great chance to play around with a goldmine of data that is both contemporary and relevant, and there are some great examples up already.

So, to summarise, every council’s spending on websites is up there, and ten have spent over £100,000, including the over-exuberant Birmingham City Council, pushing way out in front with £2,800,000. And the data is all there  for you to use.