'NYT' Invests In New Global Initiative, 'WaPo' In Data Journalism Unit

The New York Times has raised $4 million to launch Headway, a journalism initiative to investigate large-scale global and national problems.

Headway aims to produce 10 to 12 “deeply researched, visually ambitious, data-rich projects a year,” according to the company.

The Times will form a team of journalists to cover a range of economic, social, health, infrastructural and environmental challenges. Itwill also create an online public square, to encourage debate, education and research around the topics covered.



Michael Kimmelman, founder of the Headway project, will serve as editor at large.

The Ford Foundation ($1.5 million), the Stavros Niarchos Foundation ($1.5 million) and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation ($1 million) will fund the three-year initiative. Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors will serve as a nonprofit fiscal sponsor for Headway.

Thanks to the funding, Headway’s content will be available for free to readers without a subscription. Funders will have no control over the selection, focus or editing of stories.

A reporting fellow from The New York Times Fellowship will spend one year working on stories for Headway, then spend a second year at a local news organization. 

The New York Times Fellowship Program is accepting applications through Dec. 9.

The Times will work with the nonprofit Solutions Journalism Network, which will provide consulting and training for the Headway team.

Separately, The Washington Post has hired Meghan Hoyer, data editor at the Associated Press, to establish and lead a new department dedicated to data journalism next year.

Hoyer, now a senior editor, will oversee data projects and act as a consulting editor on data-driven stories, graphics and visualizations across the newsroom, according to The Washington Post’s executive editor Marty Baron and managing editors Cameron Barr, Tracy Grant, Krissah Thompson and Kat Downs Mulder.

Seven data journalists will report to Hoyer and remain embedded in their current departments of Graphics, Investigative, Metro and National. 

“This new data journalism department will allow The Post to vet sourcing and analysis with added rigor and consistency and provide journalists in every department with a hub of expertise on data,” the editors stated.

Hoyer will report to Barr beginning January 11.

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