Organized by the Knight Science Journalism fellowship program at MIT and funded by the Los Angeles-based Kavli Foundation, this free, expenses-covered workshop brought together two dozen journalists to explore the challenges, ethics, and opportunities in editing outstanding science stories, with a special focus on online presentation. Previous workshops have been held in Toulouse, France, San Francisco, and Boston.
The workshop took place immediately preceding the Online News Association’s annual conference in Austin. Some of the best science and digital editors in the country — including Laura Helmuth of The Washington Post, Brooke Borel, author of The Chicago Guide to Fact-checking, and Ivan Oransky, co-founder of Retraction Watch — provided training to editors responsible for science coverage from around the world. Sessions included ways to workshop story ideas, learning about fact-checking processes, discussing the reliability of sources, and exploring strategies for building audiences.
Held at Austin’s Hotel Ella, an early 20th-century-mansion converted into a hotel and conference center, the workshop served as a pilot project for science editing workshops linked to the ONA meeting. The Knight Science Journalism Program is now planning future events, starting with the 2019 ONA meeting in New Orleans this September.
Further information about the upcoming science editing workshop will be announced this spring. For more details regarding the program, please email science editing workshop organizer Joshua Hatch.