Marianna Hunt

Category: Young journalist

Country/area: United Kingdom

Organisation: The Daily Telegraph

Organisation size: Big

Cover letter:

For a broadsheet national newspaper that was founded 165 years ago, innovation is key. 

My analysis of large data sets and introduction of graphics, maps and online calculator has played an important role in attracting new readers to The Daily Telegraph and re-engaging current ones throughout this year.  

I found new ways to approach important topics for our readers, such as finding schools for their children and buying property. 

These are incredibly personal topics that can be hard to address with individual relevance within the scope of a single article. However, by using wide data sets that have national import and breaking stories down by region or price bracket, I believe I have created helpful articles with real insights. 

This new approach has meant that, despite being just 24 years of age, I have become of The Telegraph’s top reporters for bringing in paid subscribers. This shows that clearly people are willing to pay for data journalism. 

I appreciate that data works best when given a human touch and make sure to combine my digital stories with personal interviews and expert opinions to make them easy for people to engage with. 

Description of portfolio:

Getting their children into top schools is a key concern for our readers. As such, I launched a very successful series using data to find the best places to live in Britain to be near the most ‘outstanding’ schools. To fit the criteria, each place had to have low crime rates, low unemployment, affordable homes, high household incomes and more than a certain number of top schools. This involved deep analysis of multiple data sets, creating maps to help readers identify key areas, and qualitative analysis through speaking to local estate agents in each area. 

The series brought in around 40 new paying subscribers. 

I also worked with a mapping agency using Ordnance Survey data to identify the British cities with the most green space. This I overlaid with property prices and interviews with estate agents to give readers a true sense of what it would be like to live in these places, bringing the data to life. 

Some of the most successful stories I have published are those where readers are able to personalise the data to themselves. In one article I analysed data on Britain’s national broadband coverage, identifying local trends and areas with particularly poor internet. Within the article I embedded a broadband checker so that readers could see how their own internet speeds compared to those across the country.

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