Collaboration is at the core of most data journalism projects and investigations, whether they span teams, time zones, borders or newsrooms, and so is having access to tools that can facilitate this type of work.
Journalists can work together on different aspects of the same dataset, but they can also collaborate to turn traditional information into structured data, and to connect archive content to stories.
For example, The Associated Press has used data.world for a pilot to encourage AP members to find local stories in national data and tie them in with the relevant context.
After you have created a free account on data.world, you can start a new project or a new dataset. A project is a "collection of analysis and insights alongside the underlying data", while a new dataset is a "collection of files and the story that makes them compelling".
To create a project, give it a name based on what it's about, for example 'drug spending', which will also become your project URL; an objective, or what the aim of your project is; and finally, decide whether you want to make it open for anyone to view and contribute, or private.
You can then link a dataset or more, go straight into your workspace or invite contributors. To link a dataset, search within the platform. For example I searched for drug spending and found a dataset from Data for Democracy, which I added to my project. You can add as many as you'd like.
The dataset will then show up on the right-hand side, under 'data sources', where you can link more or add files from your computer or an external URL. There is also a 'queries' section underneath, where you can run SQL or SPARQL queries for your datasets.
For each project, you have five categories at the top: overview, insights, people, discussion and settings.
Under insights, you can add important findings in text and support them with files by dragging and dropping them from your clipboard.
Under people, you can invite other data.world users to either view, view and edit, or view, edit and manage the project. Here, you can build your team and assign them different tasks in the project, such as cleaning part of the dataset and re-uploading, or visualising and exporting part of the information.
Under discussion, you can leave comments and organise them by topic.
To create a new dataset as opposed to a project, you give it a title, for example 'ZIP code by income', make it open or private, and then add files, tags and descriptions to help other people discover your dataset. You have roughly the same categories you do for a project: overview, contributors, discussion, activity and settings.
Data.world developers don't have any plans to charge for the tool for the immediate future and newsrooms can get started with the tool at no extra cost.
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