Banksy banana mastermind?

Banksy banana mastermind?
image from beglen

Friday, February 28, 2014

Steve Doig

In 1992, category five Hurricane Andrew hit the south Florida coast, causing $26 billion in damage and destroying about 49,000 homes. Immediately following the storm, many news outlets published stories of survivors accounts of the disaster. Steve Doig, an associate editor and researcher for the Miami Herald, led a four-month project that used computers to analyze millions of county records that culminated in a 16-page report that was printed nearly four months after the storm hit. The report was titles, “What Went Wrong.”

Ultimately, the analysis of Doig and his team at the Miami Herald  found that the age of buildings directly correlated to the damage received by the storm. In the years leading up to the storm, the county building code was weakened - the direct effect of construction industry lobbying. Weakened building code regulations, combined with what Doig's team identified as an over-scheduled inspection department, led to the United States' most expensive natural disaster of all time.

Without computer-assisted reporting, also known as power journalism, an analysis of such depth would not have been possible.

Twenty-one years late, power journalism is more important than ever. With more records than ever before available, journalists have the ability to quickly compile data sets and find meaningful correlations and relevant trends.

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