Innovation in Journalism Award

The Innovation in Journalism Award celebrates news organizations that are transforming journalism while maintaining the integrity and high standards that make journalism an essential part of a free society. It is open to any U.S.-based journalist. The winner will be selected by a special committee of NPF judges to recognize news organizations or journalists who are pioneering new ways of storytelling.

The Washington Post’s investigation into police shootings will receive NPF’s Innovation in Journalism Award. The NPF judges said: “The Post changed the arc of an ongoing story by methodically building a database that added facts and evidence to the ongoing emotionally-charged narrative. Some of the facts were counter-intuitive — for all the rightful anger about shootings of unarmed African Americans, ‘The dead were overwhelmingly white men with guns, who had attacked or threatened people.’ On the other hand, the data showed disturbing facts: unarmed African-Americans were killed at a rate seven times higher than unarmed whites. A quarter of those killed were mentally ill. More than 50 officers involved in shootings had killed before. The project forced the FBI to admit that the Post had compiled a more complete database than it had, and the law agency is replicating the Post’s work.”

The judges awarded an honorable mention to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists’ Panama Papers project, recognizing “the sheer size and scope of a project that represents the work of hundreds of news organizations across the globe.”