Nieman Watchdog

Public Service Work

By Watchdog May 16, 2013

Margaret Engel, a longtime champion of nonprofit journalism, hopes more foundations (including small, locally based ones) will start to recognize the essential public service work of news organizations—and will realize that their communities' needs are less likely to be met if reporters aren't out there exposing them. Read more

You Can’t Rush Great Journalism

By Watchdog April 18, 2013

Photojournalist and filmmaker Molly Bingham writes that good journalism takes time—including time on the ground. And if we can't find some way to afford it, then our journalism will suffer. Third in a series of Q. and A.’s with former Nieman Fellows about the past, present and future of watchdog reporting. Read more

Complicated Matters

By Watchdog March 13, 2013

Veteran investigative journalist Ken Armstrong, NF ’01, encourages his fellow reporters to look for patterns rather than isolated anecdotes, to focus on what others have to say rather than joust with sources, and not to be too humble. In a Q. and A. about watchdog reporting, he said stories too often are presented as black and white; what he’d like to see is “less villainizing, more humanizing.” And he singled out Steve Coll’s “Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power” as a well-researched book that doesn’t shy from nuance. Read more

The Jobs Crisis

By Watchdog March 13, 2013

Job creation is a key topic in the presidential election but so far it's been all sound bites and no substance. Dan Froomkin, a new contributing editor to Nieman Reports and former deputy editor of the Nieman Watchdog Project, examines the jobs crisis and what's missing from Romney and Obama's statements on the issue. Neither seems ready to acknowledge that, in the words of Robert Pollin, author of “Back to Full Employment," creating decent jobs requires “substantial levels of government intervention.” Read more