Geojournalism Handbook Puts Earth Science Data at Reporters’ Fingertips

Oct 12013

Journalists worldwide who want to improve their data-wrangling skills to better cover the environment have a new resource. The Geojournalism Handbook is a free, online guide to mapping and visualization technologies. It explains environmental data such as satellite imagery and even shows you how to build your own balloon to take aerial pictures.

To create the guide, which is part of my ICFJ Knight International Journalism Fellowship, we brought together a team of journalists and technologists with deep experience in the fields of mapping and environmental reporting to share their knowledge.

The online toolkit was created in partnership with ICFJ, Internews' Earth Journalism Network and the Flag It! Project. It will be a resource for Flag It! participants in Brazil, Nigeria, the Philippines and Romania. It is also part of the portfolio of the Environmental News Lab (Ecolab), a multidisciplinary team working to create useful applications for environmental coverage.

At launch, the Geojournalism Handbook offers 11 tutorials with different levels of difficulty. It leads journalists through the whole process of creating environmental stories with data, from obtaining the information they need through editing a feature story. The content includes topics such as data, crowdsourcing, mapping, design and visualization. Over the next couple of months, we expect to add video tutorials and additional topics. So far, it is available in English and Portuguese, but we hope to make it available in other languages as wel

Read the full post on IJNet here, and check out the Geojournalism Handbook here.


The International Journalists' Network, IJNet, keeps professional and citizen journalists up to date on the latest media innovations, online journalism resources, training opportunities and expert advice. ICFJ produces IJNet in seven languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, Persian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. IJNet is supported by donors including the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Satellite image of Amazon River via Wikimedia Commons.