Investigative journalism

Research and reports about the effectiveness of donor and foundation-supported investigative journalism.

This resource page is a work in progress. Please get in touch to let us know what is missing using this form.


"This report is designed to give funders a succinct and accessible introduction to the practice of funding investigative journalism around the world, via major contemporary debates, trends and challenges in the field. It is part of a series from DW Akademie looking at practices, challenges and futures of investigative journalism around the world."

Ellen Hume and Anya Schiffrin

This report was prepared for meeting at the Perugia International Journalism Festival in 2019, consider how to establish a Global Fund for Investigative Journalism, either as a free-standing trust fund or foundation or as a sub-fund attached to other international funding organizations.

The meeting was convened by the Organised Crime Corruption and Reporting Project (OCCRP) and Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD).

Because corruption is global, confounding national and regional responses, journalists often work in networks, and across borders, to challenge these abuses of power. The commercial marketplace for sustaining this kind of journalism is completely inadequate. However, existing national and regional funding mechanisms also fail to sustain the watchdogs who are our front line of defense against injustice and impunity.

Working together, rather than on parallel tracks to create multiple global funds that compete for the same money, is necessary. The timing, potential, and urgent need for a journalism fund are clear.

International Center for Investigative Journalism - BEN HALLAM

Reuters Institute at Oxford University - LUCAS GRAVES & NABEELAH SHABBIR

Collaborative global reporting projects like the Panama Papers raise anew the difficult question of how to measure and analyse the social impacts of journalism, and especially of investigative or ‘accountability’ reporting. Professional norms make journalists reluctant to weigh their work in terms of the results it produces, for fear of being seen as activists, but the question becomes more urgent as public affairs journalism increasingly relies on nonprofit newsrooms supported by charitable giving or other subsidies. Meanwhile, global investigative projects are a new phenomenon and have rarely been studied in terms of impact.


American Press Institute - LAURIE BETH HARRIS

Centre for International Media Assistance - DREW SULLIVAN

‌The report examines the practices used by media development implementers and donors, both governmental and private, to spur investigative reporting in emerging democracies.

Centre for International Media Assistance - DAVID KAPLAN

This survey of key drivers and actors in global investigative journalism suggests ways to best support and professionalize investigative journalism in developing and transitioning countries.


For academic research into investigative journalism go to

pageInvestigative journalism

For case studies of how investigative journalism can measure and communicate success go to

pageImpact measurement, evaluation & learning


This resource page is a work in progress. Please get in touch to let us know what is missing using this form.

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