Investigative Stories from Open Data

    This new course will show you how to piece together stories - and even find scoops - through data which is already freely available, as long as you know where to look.


    Goldsmiths University London
    13 November 2015


    Full price: £130
    Student: £100

    Delegates should bring their own laptops, ideally with Excel, but Google docs and Open Refine can be used as an alternative.

    Book your place

    Course Outline

    Jonathan Stoneman will show you how to use freely available, open data to dig deeper and piece together stories.

    About the trainer 

    Jonathan Stoneman is an Associate Trainer with the Open Data Institute and teaches their "Finding Stories in Open Data". He keeps up-to-date with other developments via NICAR and by attending their conference every year.



    10.00 - Intro, aims of course, any requests

    10.20 - What is open data, where to find it, what others are doing with it. Discussion and presentation

    10.45 - Exercise – find some data, examine it, decide how trustworthy it is, think about possible stories you could get from it or through it

    Short Break

    11.00 - Basic operations with datasets – exercise making use of sorting, filtering, pivoting, basic visualisation as tool for finding patterns in data

    11.45 - Dealing with dirty data – intro to Open Refine. Exercise to clean up dataset

    12.45-13.45 Lunch 

    13.45 - Exercise – working in teams of 2-3, find a real story using open data selected from –
    Health data, Road safety, Public spending, public service expenditure – eg expenses, and/or spending over £500

    15.45 - Presentation of stories

    16.15 - Discussion of next moves – eg where to get more data, how to licence open data, tools available. Wrap up