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September 9, 2020 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Title: Fascinating Revelations
Presenter: Mark Hansen
Abstract: Journalists have long turned to data and computation as important components in their reporting. In 1904, Joseph Pulitzer himself advocated for the inclusion of data analysis in his College of Journalism. “You want statistics to tell you the truth” he explained, and then quickly pointed out that with statistics you can find “romance, human interest, humor and fascinating revelations.” Data and its analysis is a unique source for journalists, one with descriptive power on almost every beat. But data is not just something to report “with”. In ways that would have been hard for Pulitzer to fully anticipate, data and computation now form complex systems of power in our world. Journalists have a unique responsibility to assess if these systems are fair, holding this new form of power to account — reporting “on” data and its uses. For the last eight years, I have been training journalists to report “on” as well as “with” data, code and algorithms. My talk is about my experiences and what “Computational Journalism” might mean for the practice of Statistics.