Smart Chicago’s FOIA Fest 2016 Data Crunching Session

On Saturday, March 12th I participated in the 4th annual FOIA Fest in Chicago. This is how the conference is described on its website:

This daylong conference, featuring more than two dozen journalists and other FOIA experts, kicks off national Sunshine Week, a time to celebrate the importance of access to public information. FOIAFest is made possible by the generous support of the Chicago Headline Club, Loyola University Chicago and the Robert R. McCormick Foundation.

I led a hands-on session on intermediate Microsoft Excel for researchers and journalists. Using Chicago’s 2012 – 2015 Lobbyist Compensation Data, we walked through analysis tips and tricks and built pivot tables. The goal was simple: let’s walk through how someone might take a dataset and begin to tell a story with it.

You can see all the slides from the session here:

Here is the screencast video from the session: