Steal This E-book: Download our New Community Health Reporting Guide!
It can seem impossibly daunting to try to dive deep into data as a reporter, blogger or community health storyteller – despite the wealth of information that can be found online. Deadlines come fast; resources are slim; time is limited. And how do all these new online tools work, anyway? We set out to help remedy that situation with our new e-book, which we published today: Health is Everything: Using Data to Report Great Stories on Your Community's Health.
Frank Bass, a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist and news data editor at Bloomberg News, wrote this step-by-step guide for Reporting on Health, our online journalism community at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. The project, our first e-book and reporting guide, is supported by a generous grant from The California Endowment, a Los Angeles-based health foundation.
As editor-in-chief of Reporting on Health, I commissioned Health is Everything because I saw the enormous value of putting sophisticated data analysis within every journalist's reach. In today's resource-strapped newsrooms, it's increasingly rare to find a dedicated data journalist.
With this e-book, reporters can gain insights from hard numbers that inform their experiences in the field. And, this e-book can be used just as easily by bloggers, community nonprofits and others interesting in analyzing conditions in their communities.
Reporting on Health's data guide provides reporters and health storytellers with the tools to drill down to the neighborhood level to examine children's health, environmental exposures, the incidence of neighborhood violence, and food quality and food access. The e-book also provides cautionary advice about the perils of misinterpreting data.
The e-book is available for download on our website at no cost. In the words of Abbie Hoffman, we invite you to "steal this book." I encourage you to post links to it on Facebook and Twitter, to blog about it and share it with your network of colleagues.
And, please get back to us with stories of how you have used the e-book as well as suggestions on how we might improve it. We hope to have Kindle and iBook editions available soon, too!