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Data Journalism as “Terra Incognita”: Newcomers’ Tensions in Shifting Towards Data Journalism Epistemology
Södertörn University, School of Culture and Education, Media and Communication Studies. University of Applied Sciences Potsdam, Germany.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5677-8175
2023 (English)In: Journalism Practice, ISSN 1751-2786, E-ISSN 1751-2794Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

This article investigates data journalism epistemology through Michel Foucault’s definition of power. The growing demand for data-savvy reporters with computational skills has been proven to shift the newsrooms’ culture in media companies across the globe. Previous research has documented journalists’ shift towards a data-centred epistemology and the increasingly important role of computation and data-driven practices in newsrooms. By focusing on inexperienced journalists as they mobilise data journalism for the first time, this research openly discusses its epistemology as a form of Foucauldian power: which epistemological tensions–individual or structural–emerge among newcomers when reporting extensively with data? The article presents the case of a newly formed data journalism team at taz, a German cooperative media company. It is based on qualitative data collected through action research, namely six in-depth interviews, auto-ethnographic notes and self-reflective inquiries. Data are framed through Foucault’s concepts of power and will to truth. Results show the discord between data journalism epistemology and its practical implementation. Despite prioritising democratic access to data, technologies and non-hierarchical forms of cooperation, data journalism remains largely dependent on traditional methods and culture. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2023.
Keywords [en]
action research, cooperative journalism, Data journalism, data journalism epistemology, innovation, practice-based research, transdisciplinarity
National Category
Media and Communications
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-51234DOI: 10.1080/17512786.2023.2185656ISI: 000949732100001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85149909139OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-51234DiVA, id: diva2:1746477
Available from: 2023-03-28 Created: 2023-03-28 Last updated: 2024-01-08Bibliographically approved

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Morini, Francesca

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • harvard-anglia-ruskin-university
  • apa-old-doi-prefix.csl
  • sodertorns-hogskola-harvard.csl
  • sodertorns-hogskola-oxford.csl
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf