Stage 5
12:45 - 13:15
Robots and coding: How data is changing journalism


Robots, coding, scraping are coming to the newsroom - do we need to be afraid? Bots might not take our jobs, and not everyone has to be a coder. But journalism has already changed, and will continue to do so. We are two journalists and former fellows at the Reuters Institute in Oxford. We want to discuss how journalists and geeks can collaborate in a data-driven world. In our lightning talk, we highlight challenges and chances of data and robot journalism.


Bettina Figl is a journalist for Austrian daily Wiener Zeitung and has researched data journalism as fellow at the Reuters Institute in Oxford.  Her colleague Alexander Fanta is a journalist for and has done research on automation in journalism at the Reuters Institute, as well as pursuing a robot project at NZZ in Zurich. They will present findings from their research at the University of Oxford, insights from their newsrooms and best practices from international media. Bettina will talk about her research, where she found out that being a small newsroom is no barrier to doing award-winning data journalism. Alexander is closely following developments around automation in journalism and will offer a perspective on the digital transformation of content production with the help of robots. He will debate whether automation will kill more newsroom jobs or broaden the coverage of news. The lightning talk will conclude with an open question-and-answer-format. Its aims to engage people from both the media and tech community.