How they did it: Investigative reporting tips from the 2021 Goldsmith Prize finalists
Annually, the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy awards the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting to a stellar investigative report that has had a direct impact on government, politics and policy at the national, state or local levels. Six reporting teams were chosen as finalists for the 2021 prize, which carries a $10,000 award for finalists and $25,000 for the winner. The Journalist’s Resource is interviewing the finalists and offering a behind-the-scenes look at the processes, tools and legwork it takes to create an important piece of investigative journalism. The Journalist’s Resource is a project of the Shorenstein Center, but was not involved in judging the Goldsmith Prize. The winner of the $25,000 prize was announced on April 13, after these pieces were published.
The journalists offer tips for investigating how police primarily use dogs on people suspected of minor offenses — or no crimes — and cause injuries that can be severe and life changing.
Just before thousands of people in hundreds of U.S. cities rose up demanding racial justice and denouncing police violence, an investigative reporting team revealed that federal courts have been increasingly likely to shield police from civil lawsuits.
A tip about Indiana’s largest nursing home system leads an investigative team to expose how public hospital officials in Indiana exploited the Medicaid program’s lax oversight.
Journalist Neil Bedi offers seven tips on using academic research as a reporting tool in investigative projects.
“I find that deliberately prospecting for stories can be less productive than just going out and listening to what people have to say,” says Dan Diamond, who shares some tips for reporting a stellar story.
Strip searches and garnished wages over a few grand in court debt? Here’s how Anna Wolfe and Michelle Liu got the scoop on Mississippi’s “restitution program.”