With the country in the grips of a devastating pandemic, the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley has joined forces with The New York Times to help meet the need for comprehensive reporting on how this crisis is affecting California.
Under the leadership of the School’s Investigative Reporting Program, more than 80 students and nearly 20 journalism instructors have been organized into small reporting teams to cover how the novel coronavirus is impacting each of California’s 58 counties. The teams are producing stories that will run in either the main edition of The Times or in its five-day-a-week newsletter, California Today, which reaches several hundred thousand readers.
UPDATE 4/6/20: The fellowship program is suspended due to a campus-wide hiring freeze. Please check back here for updates. We apologize for any inconvenience.
We’ve begun accepting applications for the 2020-21 IRP Fellowships. We’re hiring 2-3 full-time fellows in investigative reporting. These positions are designed to enable select journalists with a proven ability to tell complex stories in the public interest to pursue a story for one year by providing them with a salary, benefits, office space and editorial guidance, the assistance of graduate student researchers and up to $10,000 for approved expenses.
“The Trials of Gabriel Fernandez,” a six-part documentary series based on reporting by the IRP’s Garrett Therolf, began streaming on February 26 and was #1 on Netflix in the U.S. in its first week.
Geeta Anand, acting professor of reporting at the Graduate School of Journalism, has been named director of the School’s Investigative Reporting Program (IRP). Prof. Anand had been serving as interim director since July under Prof. David Barstow, who leads the IRP as the Reva and David Logan Distinguished Chair in Investigative Journalism.
David Barstow, a senior writer at The New York Times and the first reporter to ever win four Pulitzer Prizes, is the new head of investigative reporting at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Barstow will lead Berkeley Journalism’s prestigious Investigative Reporting Program, founded by Prof. Lowell Bergman, who retired in June after 28 years of teaching at UC Berkeley.
Yoav Potash, director of the award-winning documentary Crime After Crime, wrote in Videomaker magazine about his decision to take the IRP’s Professional Workshop for Independent Filmmakers and how it helped him improve his investigative skills. Potash writes that even after his previous success, he learned invaluable information about journalism and bulletproofing his stories.
The second-highest ranking officer in one of the largest police departments in California went to prison last year, convicted of conspiring to deal heroin and marijuana. It’s one of the biggest police corruption scandals in modern state history. Robert Lewis, the lead reporter for the IRP’s California Corruption Project with KQED, reports on the story in a special episode of the California Report Magazine.
Felix Sater, a former business partner of President Donald Trump who – along with Michael Cohen – tried to build a Trump Tower in Moscow during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, spoke at Lowell Bergman’s seminar in September. He is scheduled to testify for the first time in open session before the House Intelligence Committee on March 27. You can watch the video of Sater’s appearance at the IRP and learn more on the Investigative Studios website.
The California Reporting Project, a coalition of more than 30 news organizations, has formed to request and report on previously secret records of police misconduct and deadly use of force. The group—including the IRP, KQED, the Bay Area News Group, KPCC, Capital Public Radio and the Los Angeles Times—is investigating records obtained under the state’s new police transparency law. To learn more, you can read the full story on KQED’s website and view a timeline that shows everything published to date, including stories researched by Graduate School of Journalism students.
Hanayo Oya, a Fulbright fellow based at the Investigative Reporting Program, has won Japan’s most prestigious film award for her latest documentary, Boy Soldiers: the Secret War in Okinawa (co-directed by Chie Mikami). The award ceremony was held Feb. 10 in Tokyo.
(Photo credit: Haruhi Ichikawa)
John Temple Presents and Judges at Press Mega-Conference
IRP Director John Temple is presenting and speaking at the Key Executives Mega-Conference in Las Vegas. The event is the only major newspaper conference scheduled in 2019. Temple was part of a three-judge panel that evaluated newspaper innovation. He also is leading a roundtable on the future of investigative reporting at the event. For more information, please visit the Mega-Conference website.
IRP Founder Lowell Bergman spoke at Sundance Film Festival for the “Democracy Hacked?” panel Jan. 27 in Park City, Utah.
The IRP and PBS Frontline film Trafficked in America has been selected as a finalist for the 2019 Goldsmith Prize. The film, reported by the IRP’s Daffodil Altan, Andrés Cediel, and Abbie VanSickle, investigates labor trafficking at an Ohio egg farm. The prize is awarded by Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center. For more information, please read the press release.
Reveal partners with Investigative Studios, the production arm of the Investigative Reporting Program to explore the deadly crash of a 53E helicopter during a training exercise. You can listen to the episode on Reveal‘s website.
The IRP is now accepting applications for the 2019-20 Investigative Reporting Fellowships. These positions are designed to enable select journalists with a proven ability to tell complex public interest stories to pursue a story for up to one year. To apply, please visit https://aprecruit.berkeley.edu/apply/JPF02017.