Handbooks

Our handbook series is a range of guides for investigative journalist, campaigners and NGOs. They offer an in-depth look at investigative techniques and tools for researchers.

Paperback editions - made available thanks to the Lorana Sullivan Foundation and the Reva and David Logan Foundation - can be purchased from the CIJ office. Please complete the order form below.

The Hidden Scenario
By Luuk Sengers and Mark Lee Hunter

The Hidden Scenario focuses on how making a scenario can help you investigate. Part One details the basic principles of constructing a chronology. In Part Two, we move on to the construction of powerful scenes. In particular, we alert the reader to the kinds of dramatic details that must be collected, and why. Part Three shows how scenes lead to sources: people, documents and data that might be available to prove your hypothesis and enrich your narrative. Part Four helps you apply your scenario in the field as a research tool.

 

 

The Story Tells the Facts
By Luuk Sengers and Mark Hunter

This is the follow on to The Hidden Scenario, and will help you to make your investigative writing better by focusing on writing skills, because they transpose very well into other media. This handbook will should you how to turn your investigation into a compelling story that will keep your both your editor and audience engaged.

 

The Investigative Journalist's Guide to Company Accounts
By Raj Bairoliya

This is a guide for investigative journalists who need to make sense of a set of company accounts or obtain an overview of a business in order to ask on the money questions of the directors. While to do this at an expert level is difficult if not impossible without years of specialist training and experience, this guide will give you enough of a working knowledge to know what questions to ask and when the wool is being pulled over your eyes.

 


Investigative Photography

By CJ Clarke, Damien Spleeters and Juliet Ferguson

This manual has been written for journalists, NGO workers and other individuals for whom photography could be useful to support their work. It is not a guide to taking better pictures, but how to use the camera for evidence gathering. It gives an overview of how photography can be used as part of an investigation or to support a story.

 

FOIA without the Lawyer
By Brendan Montague and Lucas Amin

The Freedom of Information Act is an excellent journalistic tool that offers access to information held by more than 100,000 public bodies in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In FOIA without the Lawyer, the authors share the methodology they have developed while running The Request Initiative and making requests on behalf of charities, NGOs and campaigning groups. The handbook outlines good practice, which is informed by the authors’ own experience as well as advice it has obtained from its network of lawyers, information officers and public servants.

 

 

DPA without the Lawyer
By Jenna Corderoy and Brendan Montague

The Data Protection Act (DPA) 1998 is about more than simply the protection of personal data. It is also about the right to personal data. This handbook will show you how the Act can be used as a powerful tool in investigative Journalism. Through a subject access request (SAR), journalists can encourage sources to access their personal information held by public authorities and private companies. This is especially helpful when verifying the claims of whistleblowers.

 

EIRs without the Lawyer
By Lucas Amin and Brendan Montague

The Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) are a powerful suite of information access rules that can give journalists access to environmental data held by local, national and European governments and agencies. This handbook provides clear and precise guidance to journalists on how to make effective use of the regulations, from making a request to using the appeals process.