The Washington Post announced today a major expansion of its investigative journalism, building on the sharp increase in staff it has dedicated to accountability work over the past several years. Overall, the initiative will add 10 staff positions to The Post’s newsroom.
“The Post has a long and distinguished history of groundbreaking investigative journalism,” said Martin Baron, executive editor of The Post. “This expansion is very much in that tradition, and it accentuates one of our newsroom’s greatest assets. Our goal is to further strengthen an already robust Investigative Unit and to continue distributing investigative firepower throughout the newsroom.”
The Post is supplementing its Investigative Unit with five staffers, including a reporter and additional editor for fast-turnaround work, a reporter to pursue longer-term projects, a researcher and a FOIA specialist who will partner with all newsroom departments to pursue journalistic opportunities in federal, state and local public records. Most recently, The Post added a data reporting specialist to the team.
In January 2017, The Post doubled the size of the Investigative Unit by creating an eight-person “rapid-response” team that collaborates with all newsroom departments on accountability journalism that demands greater speed. In the team’s first year, it partnered on Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore in Alabama.
The current initiative calls for The Post to also add investigative reporters to several newsroom teams, including Sports, Climate and Environment, and Foreign. The investigative reporter on the Foreign staff likely will be based in Europe. Sports, which already had one investigative reporter, also will gain an editor to focus on investigations and major projects. These positions supplement existing full-time reporter roles assigned to investigative journalism in departments including Business, Local and National. Many other reporters also conduct investigations as a natural and essential element of their regular beats.