IRE 2013    JUNE 20-23    SAN ANTONIO

Conference blog

News, session recaps and photos galleries.


Leading journalists discuss stories and techniques.

Hands-on training

Learn to mine data and the web for investigations.


See which journalists are presenting at the conference

Exhibitors & recruiters 

Connect with the highly talented crowd at IRE.

Special events

The IRE awards ceremony, concerts and more.


  • May 3: Filing deadline for BOD candidates to be on absentee ballot 
  • May 8: Online absentee voting begins; BOD candidate statements posted at
  • May 31: Last day to make hotel reservations in the discounted room block (if the block has not sold out)
  • June 5: Conference pre-registration closes at 7 p.m. CT and sign-up for mentoring program ends. 
  • June 7: Deadline for BOD candidates to be listed at
  • June 19: Absentee voting closes
  • June 19: Free session "Breaking Local Stories with Economic Data" offered by Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism from 2-5 p.m.  Click for details or registration.
  • June 20: A full day of sessions starting at 9 a.m. and running until 6 p.m. Sessions on Thursday will cover criminal justice, computer-assisted reporting, INN and hands-on training in Tableau Public and Caspio.  After a great day of sessions, join fellow attendees at the welcome reception sponsored by Esri.
  • June 20: IRE Board of Directors Meeting, 2 p.m.
  • June 21: Full day of sessions from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • June 21: Deadline to file at 12 noon (CDT)
  • June 22: IRE Awards Luncheon honoring award winners and Keynote speaker, Marcela Turati 
  • June 22: Full day of sessions from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • June 22: IRE Membership Meeting and Board of Directors Elections, 6 p.m.
  • June 22: IRE Closing Reception, 7:30 p.m.
  • June 23: Final morning of IRE conference, sessions begin at 9 a.m. until Noon


Business Journalism Training

Free Pre-Conference Workshop on June 19: Breaking Local Stories with Economic Data

The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will offer a free workshop from 2-5 p.m. on June 19: Breaking Local Stories with Economic Data. Government data offer unparalleled opportunities to distinguish your reporting with trend stories about what’s happening in your local economy. Especially this year, with the release of the every-five-year Economic Census, journalists will have a unique opportunity to track changes in their local community from 2007 — before the recession — to 2012. Instructors Paul Overberg of USA TODAY and Jeannine Aversa, late of The AP, now with the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, will provide you with a road map to finding and delivering at least 15 local enterprise stories from government economic data. Examples will be specific to the San Antonio region, but applicable anywhere. Sign up here for this free workshop.


Hands-on training with Tableau

Tableau Public will be offering two hands-on training sessions on Thursday, June 20 at the IRE Conference.  The morning session, Tableau for Beginners, from 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. and the afternoon session is Tableau for Pros, from 1:30 - 5:30 p.m.  Pre-registration is required for both sessions and you must be registered for the IRE Conference to attend. Learn more ...


Hands-on training with Caspio

Caspio will be offering several hands-on sessions on Thursday, June 20 at the IRE Conference. Sessions include: Rapid Data Publishing with Caspio; Sneak Peek of Caspio 8.0 Beta; Demo: New Caspio Map Mashup Wizard; and Mapping and User-Generated Data.  Pre-registration is encouraged and you must be registered for the IRE Conference to attend. Learn more... 


IRE Board of Directors Meeting

The IRE Board of Directors will meet at 2 p.m. Thursday in San Antonio as part of the annual conference.
The meeting will be held in Conference Room 7 at the San Antonio Marriott Rivercenter. The meeting is open to all IRE members.


Broadcast Show-and-Tell

Show-and-Tell sessions offer new ways to share your investigations with colleagues from around the country. Sessions will have veteran braodcasters as moderators. Look for sign-up sheets on the 3rd floor near registration. Sessions will take place in Conference Room 17&18 on Friday and Saturday.




Influential Cuban journalist to speak at 2015 IRE Conference

We're excited to announce that Yoani Sánchez, a Cuban journalist who has earned international fame and support for her courageous, independent reporting, will be a featured speaker at this year's IRE Conference in Philadelphia. Sanchez started as a blogger and now runs an independent media website, 14ymedioCuba’s first independent daily digital news outlet.
A University of Havana graduate in Philology, Sánchez emigrated to Switzerland in 2002 to build a new life for herself and her family. Two years later, she returned to Havana, promising herself to live there as a free person. In 2007 ...

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Sign up for mentoring at the 2015 IRE Conference

The IRE Conference offers an opportunity for in-depth, one-on-one coaching on investigative reporting. These private sessions allow attendees to seek advice on challenging stories or follow-up ideas.

IRE pairs those who signed up with a mentor, and contact information is provided to both mentors and those who want to be mentored. Mentors and mentees can then agree on a time and place to meet at the conference.   

These sessions are not for job seekers; they are designed for teaching and sharing information. Mentees should bring examples of work and story ideas. (Note: IRE is unable to provide private access to ...

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James Risen to headline 2015 IRE Conference in Philadelphia

James Risen

We hope you’re making plans to join us in Philadelphia June 4-7 for the IRE Conference.

We’ll be sharing expected speakers and panels soon, but we're excited to announce our 2015 keynote speaker – James Risen.

Risen is an investigative reporter for the New York Times, based in Washington. He was the winner of the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting and was a member of the New York Times reporting team that won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting. He was also the winner of the 2006 Goldsmith Prize for investigative reporting.

Risen joined ...

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Submit session, speaker ideas for the 2015 IRE Conference

IRE is looking to you for input in planning sessions for the upcoming IRE Conference, June 4-7, 2015 in Philadelphia.

Please let us know what you'd like to learn – and who you'd like to hear from – at this year's conference. You can submit panel topics and suggest speakers. The more we hear from you, the better the conference will be. 

Proposals for sessions will be accepted from January 12 - February 6.  It will not be possible to include every panel submitted in the program.  If your panel is selected, you will be notified no later than mid-April ...

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A Canadian journalist reflects on the IRE Conference

By Stanley Tromp, IRE member and independent journalist

If anyone thinks that investigative reporting is a sunset profession, this idea was obliterated for me after I attended the Investigative Reporters and Editors’ superlative conference in San Francisco in late June. There, some of the toughest and sharpest investigative reporters in the United States shared their skills, which reporters usually keep hidden, with remarkable generosity at more than 100 panels and workshops.

The speakers taught 1,600 delegates from around the world new ways to investigate the courts, organized crime, government surveillance, health care, college sports, immigration, whistleblowers, clean energy, religion ...

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IRE Conference audio available for download

Couldn't make it to all of the sessions on your IRE Conference wish list? We've got audio from nearly every panel and session. Full-length recordings are only available to IRE members. Some short audio clips will be made available to the public using Soundcloud.

To access conference audio, log in to IRE website and go to the IRE Conference schedule page. Find the session you'd like to listen to and click through to the landing page. If you don't remember the name or date of the session, try using the speakers page to look up a ...

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Social media proves stronger than print during Ukraine protests

This post was originally published at Newsroom by the Bay

By Elijah Akhtarzad

The Investigative Reporters and Editors conference held at the Marriott Hotel in San Francisco on June 27 included a first-hand account of the YanukovychLeaks discovery from journalists Olesya Ivanova and Denys Bigus. Both reporters were on the scene at Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych’s home immediately following his ouster from power and the discovery of thousands of hidden documents that were thrown into a nearby lake.

Ivanova and Bigus lived in Yanukovych’s home for more than seven days, reviving the wet documents that would reveal the ...

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VIDEO: Reporters offer tips for covering emerging communities

By Chhaya Nene

Minorities will account for more than a third of U.S. households by 2025, according to a recent study. Molly Hennessy-Fiske, of the Los Angeles Times; Momo Chang, independent journalist; and Ravi Kapur of WRJK-Chicago shared their best strategies for covering emerging communities on a deadline.

After the session, Hennessy, Chang, and Kapur shared their tips for verifying the authenticity of a source and navigating reporting challenges. Watch the video embedded on the right.

Tips from the session

Four ways to stand out from the competition:

  1. Flee you neighborhood/comfort zone and visit places you would never ...
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Reporting on inequality requires an eye for historical context, institutional injustice

By Laura Rena Murray

Sally Lehrman of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics and Venise Wagner of San Francisco State University discussed reporting tools and strategies to better cover institutional inequity. Wagner and Lehrman began the session with personal tales.

Lehrman’s great-grandfather moved to Colorado to be cured of tuberculosis in a sanitarium – prevailing anti-Semitism of his time blamed the disease on weak genetics. Wagner’s grandfather had worked as a repairman mechanic for U.S. Steel and watched white immigrant colleagues he trained ascend the ranks while he stayed trapped in a low-level position. Wagner said his story ...

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VIDEO: How to go undercover on a budget

By Chhaya Nene

These days the phrase “on a budget” applies to everyone, especially journalists.  At the 2014 IRE Conference, veteran journalists Anna Hewson of KUSA/9News Denver, Joe Ellis of KXAN-Austin, Bryan Staples of WTVF-Nashville, and Steve Eckert of KARE 11 Minneapolis/St. Paul shared their best-kept secrets for going undercover without blowing the newsroom budget.

After the session, Bryan Staples shared his tips on thrifty undercover reporting. Watch the video embedded on the right.

Here are a few tips from the session:

Must-have equipment:

  • Purse cameras ($10 at Goodwill)
  • Button cameras ($149)
  • Pinhole cameras (black and white camera ...
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