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Data Journalist, technical, BBC Local (Central Editorial Team)

Birmingham, GB
Closing date
4 Dec 2023

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Media and Publishing
Contract Type
Full Time

Job Details

Job Purpose

Based in Birmingham.

BBC Local is recruiting a data journalist with experience in storytelling, and technical expertise in sourcing, harvesting and cleaning data at scale.

You'll be part of the Central Editorial Team, which provides a range of multi-platform central services for local and regional teams across England. Our Data Journalists deliver a wide range of data-led stories as well as supporting the delivery of journalism locally. It works in partnership with data teams across the BBC.

Key Responsibilities and Accountabilities

  • To generate original ideas for impactful data-driven investigations that will resonate with regional audiences and the wider BBC.
  • To explore and summarize data for interesting news angles using spreadsheet software such as Google Sheets and Excel.
  • To use off-the-shelf data visualisation tools such as Flourish and Datawrapper to explain complex datasets to our audience.
  • To support the delivery of data journalism to regional teams, along with providing expertise and guidance to colleagues.
  • To monitor data releases from public authorities and other sources for potential sources news stories

Knowledge, Skills, Training & Experience

  • You will be a talented investigative journalist, brimming with story ideas.
  • You will be adept at handling datasets with a track record of delivering public interest news stories from a variety of data sources.
  • You will enjoy working on long-form digital investigations rather than daily news.
  • You will be passionate about local news and have an understanding of BBC Local, and the BBC teams across England.
  • You will be passionate about exploring the latest developments in digital storytelling and computer-aided journalism.

  • A good understanding of statistics and statistical analysis.
  • A strong grasp of how to clean, parse and query data using spreadsheet software such as Excel and Google Sheets.
  • Experience of using visualisation tools such as Datawrapper and Flourish (including spatial data).
  • Experience negotiating with public officials for data and open records, and sound understanding of how to gather information via Freedom of Information requests.
  • Experience of writing for the web and using content management systems to make compelling content.

Desirable experience
  • Knowledge of programming languages used by data journalists such as Python and R
  • A knowledge of basic HTML and CSS and an understanding of web page design*
  • Knowledge of web scraping tools


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