City University’s XCity magazine has given its innaugural award for City alumni to the Guardian’s Simon Rogers. The magazine praised Rogers’ “pioneering” work on the Guardian’s Datastore and Datablog, especially his role in using crowd-sourcing to analyse the MPs’ expenses data.
The award recognises the former City journalism students who “have made an outstanding contribution to journalism in terms of making a difference in the way news and features are written or presented”. Rogers certainly meets these criteria.
He does an excellent job of finding and publishing – with the necessary context – beautiful images or interactive visualizations that enhance a reader’s understanding, such as this map of earthquakes.
He’s also an example of why a good data journalist can be especially useful to a paper. On March 1 he produced three blogs for the data store, one enhancing coverage of the Libyan crisis with data on arms sales to Gaddafi, another on changes in the UK’s international aid budget, and a third on the transparency of oil companies. That’s a lot of content for one day.
He has also been involved in increasing the amount of data shared with readers. Not just in one off cases such as the MPs expenses, but as a regular practice, even for more inane topics such as the Oscars.
Overall, not a bad choice for XCity’s first award.