Data-inspired journalism is seemingly everywhere these days, from recently-launched ventures like Vox, more established ventures like FiveThirtyEight, and even rapidly evolving sites linked with traditional media enterprises, such as The Atlantic Monthly’s TheAtlantic.com, TheAtlanticCities.com and Quartz (QZ.com) and The New York Times’s forthcoming section The Upshot.
These enterprises attempt to use quantitative data as a tool to explore society, policy-making and electoral politics. But even with data, context is everything. And as frequently seen, one of the most critical areas in which a lack of representative diversity can produce distorted or misleading results — or an absence of content at all — is in the coverage of race, culture and ethnicity.
A particularly glaring omission across the data-inspired journalism landscape is contextually rich content that relates to Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs).
With Asian Pacific American Heritage Month approaching, political scientist Karthick Ramakrishnan’s AAPI Data and 18 Million Rising have launched AAPI Voices, a new platform that hopes to develop and feature data-inspired feature writing and provocative short pieces relating to AAPI communities and AAPI experiences.
The goal is to harness both the power of compelling data and the storytelling talent of the vibrant AAPI journalist, blogger and academic communities, to inspire more news coverage and public understanding of key aspects and features of our rapidly growing and changing AAPI populations.
AAPI Voices is soliciting pitches for contributions on the following themes for APA Heritage Month in 2014. While the contributions we’re seeking should be anchored in data and explore trends, patterns, nuances or exceptions to conventional wisdom that these data reveal, the style in which the pieces are written can range from analytic to creative, and from sober to humorous, and can range from short pieces (300-500 words) to longer-form, feature-length articles (1000 words+). Whatever the style or format, storytelling counts: contributions should be compelling, inviting — and provocative.
Contributors will be paid at competitive online rates (see details below); stories will be published on AAPI Voices, a new and experimental platform developed jointly by AAPIdata.com and 18MR.org, and potentially via other partners and distribution channels as needed to maximize their exposure to both media and audiences at large. AAPI Voices will provide data analysis and visualization support as necessary for accepted pitches.