This week we learn how the executive editor of The New York Times encourages innovation in her newsroom, explore new tools for data journalism, and get advice on transitioning to a multiplatform environment.

PART 1: How the top editor of the New York Times encourages innovation

This year Forbes magazine put New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson at number 19 on its annual list of the world's most powerful women. In this Futures Lab interview, Abramson says that when it comes to fostering innovation, it is important for leaders to recognize breakthroughs and to make sure everyone in the newsroom knows about them.

Reporting by Reuben Stern.

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Earlier this month, Abramson announced several changes in newsroom leadership at the Times "to find the best digital talent in the newsroom and appoint people to very senior editing roles."

PART 2: The future of data journalism

New technologies are expanding the type of information journalists can access and what they can do with it. Jennifer LaFleur, director of computer-assisted reporting at Pro Publica, and Reg Chua, editor of data and innovation at Thomson Reuters, predict how newsrooms will use these tools to tell the next big data stories.

Reporting by Sarah Harkins.

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Data journalism tools:

  • OpenCalais analyzes unstructured text to find and tag names, facts and events, making it easier to sort through textual data.

  • Overview visualizes relationships in data, making it easier to understand connections and find stories for reporting.

  • A list of other textual analysis tools, some open source and some commercial, is available here.

  • A list of additional open source tools for data can be found here.

Additional information:

PART 3: Skills for multiplatform newsrooms

Newsrooms have powerful default settings that can get in the way of change, says Steve Buttry, digital transformation editor at Digital First Media. In this interview he explains some essential skills for journalists and newsrooms as traditional media platforms continue to merge.

Reporting by Reuben Stern and Sarah Harkins.

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For more information:

Buttry regularly writes about newsroom transformation issues on his blog, The Buttry Diary.

Reuben Stern  
Director of NYC Partnerships


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