Producer Daffodil Altan Joins IRP


Daffodil Altan is an Emmy-nominated journalist and documentary film producer who joined the IRP on Nov. 1.  Previously she was a producer at the Center for Investigative Reporting, where her reporting on teen solitary confinement at Rikers Island was part of a wave of renewed coverage that led to reforms for teens at the New York City jail.


Former IRP Fellow Delivers TED Talk


Former IRP Fellow Trevor Aaronson gives a TED Talk on how the FBI is responsible for more terrorism plots in the U.S. than any other organization. Aaronson began research on this topic during his 2010-11 fellowship at the IRP.

IRP Responds to Frontline

In response to the statement from Frontline on “Bigger Than Vegas” posted on their website on April 25, 2015, The Investigative Reporting Program at the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley has already stated publicly that disagreements occur in this business, and we disagree.

The journalism we provided to Frontline on this story was solid as well as carefully reviewed. There were no errors. It was no different in quality from many stories we have done for Frontline and that they then aired.

The reporting on this story has not ended because Frontline decided not to broadcast. The team that reported this story continues to develop new information and to follow up on new developments. We have already begun to publish in another venue, and will continue to report on this story in print and broadcast. We think the public interest demands it.

2015-16 Mark Felt Scholarship Winners

The IRP is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2015-16 Mark Felt Scholarships for students who intend to specialize in investigative reporting during their second year. They are: Brett Murphy, Alyssa Perry, Nadine Sebai, Jimmy Tobias and Parker Yesko.


Lowell Bergman Speaks at Flagler College


Lowell Bergman delivered the keynote address at Communication Week, an annual event at Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida for students of journalism, media production, public relations and other fields on Sunday, March 8.  More info


Bergman Speaks at Logan Symposium UK


IRP Director Lowell Bergman addressed the inaugural Logan Symposium in London on Dec. 5. The three-day event was organized by the Centre for Investigative Journalism (UK) and marked the international expansion of the IRP’s annual Logan Symposium in Investigative Reporting held at UC Berkeley since 2007.  More info


Actress Eva Longoria Cites IRP Doc

In an op-ed piece for the Huffington Post on the unfair treatment of farm workers, actress Eva Longoria mentions the PBS Frontline documentary “Rape in the Fields,” co-produced and reported by UC Berkeley’s Investigative Reporting Program. More info


CA Gov. Signs Bill to Fight Sexual Harassment of Farmworkers


California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill that aims to combat the sexual harassment of the state’s farmworkers.  The bill was introduced in response toRape in the Fields,” a collaboration among The Center for Investigative Reporting, the Investigative Reporting Program at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, KQED-FM, PBS Frontline and Univision. More info


Abbie VanSickle Joins IRP as Reporter

Abbie VanSickle has joined the IRP as a reporter, beginning September 22, 2014. VanSickle started her journalism career at the St. Petersburg Times (now the Tampa Bay Times), where she covered crime and breaking news for four years.  Full bio


“Rape in the Fields” Documentary Nominated for Emmy

The PBS Frontline documentary “Rape in the Fields,” co-produced and reported by UC Berkeley’s Investigative Reporting Program (IRP), has been nominated for an Emmy Award in the Outstanding Investigative Journalism (long-form) category. This year’s winners will be announced on Sept. 30.


all announcements


IRP Releases Documents from Macau Investigation


As part of its continuing coverage of Macau, the IRP is releasing documents pertaining to Las Vegas Sands and its business practices in the former Portuguese colony. The documents, which include internal e-mails and reports and are part of ongoing litigation, reveal the details of relationships with an organized crime figure and a Macau businessman who was recently arrested as part of a federal bribery probe. These documents and others obtained at a Las Vegas Courthouse have since been sealed.


Mexico Tortured Alleged Killers of 43 Missing Students


In an article published in the Mexican magazine Proceso, IRP Fellows Anabel Hernandez and Steve Fisher report that the alleged killers of the 43 missing students in Iguala, Mexico gave their depositions after being tortured. The story is part of their ongoing investigation of what happened to the students and was summarized in a piece by Huffington Post. The reporting of Hernandez and Fisher is based on depositions they obtained through sources.


IRP Reporter Disputes Government’s Account Of ‘El Chapo’ Escape

Acclaimed Mexican journalist Anabel Hernandez says she has obtained internal documents that dispute the Mexican government’s official account surrounding the notorious escape of drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, including whether he really left through the tunnel found under his cell.


J-School Students Report on Vaccine Backlash in Pakistan


Under the direction of the IRP, UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism student Alexander Mullaney (IRP Mark Felt Scholarship recipient) and Syeda Amna Hassan (J-School alum 2013) report on how a Pakistani doctor unwittingly fueled suspicions about efforts to fight polio, in this article for National Geographic. This is the second installment in a four-part series on polio.


The Brief Life and Private Death of Alexandria Hill

In an article for Mother Jones magazine, 2013-14 IRP Fellow Brian Joseph investigates how the financial incentives of private foster care agencies tasked with screening and monitoring foster parents contribute to the abuse and neglect of vulnerable children nationwide.


Vaccinators Under the Gun in Pakistan

IRP Managing Editor Tim McGirk, with help from students at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, investigates how volunteers fighting polio became the hunted in Pakistan in this piece for National Geographic. This is the first installment in a four-part series on polio.


The $1.3 Billion Highway in Kosovo


In an article for Foreign Policy magazine, 2013-14 IRP Fellow Matthew Brunwasser reports on how mega-contractor Bechtel sold one of Europe’s poorest countries a $1.3 billion highway that is barely being used.


Deadly Helicopter Crashes


UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism student Jason Paladino contributed to a Virginian-Pilot investigation of a helicopter with one of the highest rates of deadly crashes in the armed services. The story is a collaboration with the IRP and NBC News.


Startling Gun Violence Fact: Suicide More Likely Than Homicide


IRP/CIR Reporter Abbie VanSickle writes about a new study that finds suicides account for nearly two-thirds of deaths from firearms. VanSickle is part of a team of reporters at the Center for Investigative Reporting who are examining the role of guns and gun violence in America.


Stickup Kid


What happens when we lock up juvenile offenders in adult prisons? “Stickup Kid,” a PBS Frontline digital exclusive by 2013-2014 IRP fellow Caitlin McNally tells the story of Alonza Thomas, who was sent to adult prison in California at age 16.


Iguala: Unofficial History


In this investigative report for Mexico’s leading news magazine Proceso, IRP fellows Anabel Hernandez and Steve Fisher  uncover official documents, videos and testimonials that tell a different story of the attack on those students in Iguala.


Death and Corruption in Mexico

Enrique Pena Nieto, Mexico, Comment

The fate of 43 missing students and a property scandal reveal the emptiness of the Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto’s rhetoric on reform, writes IRP fellow Anabel Hernández in this piece for The Guardian.


Firestone and the Warlord


What are the costs of doing business in a war zone? On Nov. 18, 2014, PBS Frontline and ProPublica investigate the relationship between Firestone and the infamous Liberian warlord Charles Taylor. The story originated at the IRP as part of a 2008-09 fellowship awarded to Jonathan Jones, an alum of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.


The Contestant


In a story for The California Sunday Magazine, 2012-13 IRP fellow Daniel Alarcón writes about a teen from the outskirts of Lima, Peru, who became an overnight sensation on a hit TV game show, then disappeared.


Rare Illness in California Afflicts Children With Polio-Like Symptoms

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 4.15.25 PM

Jake Nicol and Sally Schilling, students at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, shot a news video on a polio-like illness in California for National Geographic. Nicol, who is a Mark Felt scholarship recipient, also wrote the accompanying story. This is the first in a series of articles and videos on the global battle against polio for National Geographic that received guidance from the IRP.


Expensive Renovations at Mexico’s Presidential Home


2014-15 IRP fellow Anabel Hernández reports on the high cost of remodeling the Mexican presidential residence “Los Pinos” in this story that appeared in the September 14, 2014 issue of Mexico’s leading magazine Proceso.


The Loneliest Man in Greece


2011-12 IRP fellow Chanan Tigay writes about the central figure in Greece’s economic maelstrom in this New Yorker piece.


all reporting