The Fund for Investigative Journalism

Supporting investigative reporting projects around the world

  • Next Deadline: Feb. 4, 2019 (11:59 pm Eastern)

  • Giving Thanks

    The board and staff of the Fund for Investigative Journalism would like to express our gratitude to the following organizations and individuals who have donated time and resources in support of our work during the past year.

    Major Contributors:

    Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation

    Gannett Foundation

    Green Park Foundation

    Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Foundation

    Nicholas B. Ottaway Foundation

    Otto-Whalley Family Foundation

    Park Foundation

    Shari L. Pfleeger

    Reva & David Logan Foundation

    Connie Rydberg and Nirav Kapadia

    The Estate of William L. Matzkin

    The Herb Block Foundation

    The Nara Fund

    Partners:

    Catalogue for Philanthropy – Greater Washington

    Investigative Reporters and Editors

    Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University

    Society of Environmental Journalists

    Eric Fingerhut, Pro Bono Attorney, Dykema

    Leigh Riddick, Pro Bono Financial Advisor, Kogod School of Business, American University

    Mentors:

    David Biello, Scientific American

    Ron Campbell, Orange County Register

    Rose Ciotta, WIBV-TV – Buffalo

    Wendell Cochran, American University

    Sarah Cohen, New York Times

    Marla Cone, Environmental Health News

    Chase Davis, New York Times

    David Donald, Center for Public Integrity

    Peggy Engel, Alicia Patterson Foundation

    Mark Feldstein, University of Maryland

    Gary Fields, Wall Street Journal

    Robin Fields, ProPublica

    Mary Fricker, RepoWatch

    Ryan Gabrielson, Center for Investigative Reporting

    James Grimaldi, Wall Street Journal

    Dianna Hunt, Fort Worth Star-Telegram

    Ingrid Lobet, Houston Chronicle

    Kristen Lombardi, Center for Public Integrity

    Elizabeth Lucas, Investigative Reporters and Editors

    Josh Meyer, Northwestern University

    Jim Morris, Center for Public Integrity

    Shawn Musgrave, Muckrock

    Deborah Nelson, University of Maryland

    Lise Olsen, Houston Chronicle

    Judy Pasternak, Author

    John Ryan, KOUW Radio – Seattle

    Ricardo Sandoval Palos, Human Rights Watch

    Tony Schick, Investigative Reporters and Editors

    Andy Segal, Andy Segal Productions

    Ken Silverstein, Al Jazeera America

    Joe Stephens, Washington Post

    Tisha Thompson, WRC-TV – Washington DC

    Mc Nelly Torres, Florida Center for Investigative Reporting

    Ken Ward, Charleston Gazette

    Chris Woodside, Freelance

    Alison Young, USA Today

    Scott Zamost, CNN

    Daniel Zwerdling, NPR

    Probing a Lesser Known ExxonMobil Spill

    Playing Through - Sam EiflingFrom Sam Eifling for the Arkansas Times, an investigation of the rupture of an ExxonMobil pipeline that spilled oil and released fumes throughout a neighborhood in Arkansas. Before the spill, residents didn’t know they were living above a pipeline.

         “The oil went to the lake, [Ann] Jarrell said. “But the toxic fumes came to us.”

    In one part of the series, he reports the health risks are still largely unknown, at least to the people affected:  Most doctors aren’t trained in environmental medicine that would prepared them to treat patients with chemical exposure and oil companies such as ExxonMobil consider the chemical formula proprietary anyway.

    In another part, Eifling traces the path of the 858 mile long pipeline, some of it above ground, some of it below.  In Arkansas:  .. it crosses watersheds for 18 drinking water sources that together serve about 770,000 people, a quarter of the state’s population.

    The Arkansas Times series has been featured on TV by Rachel Maddow and by a local Fox News station.

    Photo Courtesy of Sam Eifling.

    Gambling on Casinos

    ScratchFrom Jarrett Murphy and Kate Pastor for City Limits, a report on the state of gambling in New York, where more casinos will be opening now that voters have approved a constitutional amendment.

    The winners and losers are not easy to predict, according to the report: [T]he number of existing gambling options raises the question of whether new casinos will draw new players to the market or merely pick off customers who are now placing their wagers at a racino, at an Indian gambling or via the lottery.

    The new revenue from casinos has been pledged to help schools, echoing promises made for Lottery proceeds. City Limits investigated whether that promise was fulfilled, finding: Since 1995, the state’s Lottery revenue has grown faster than state spending on schools (Lottery revenues are up 145.83 percent from 1995 while state spending on schools is up 117.89 percent). Meanwhile, per pupil spending by the state actually declined in recent years. 

    Photo Courtesy of Karla Ann Cote.

    Women, War, and PTSD

    Vet-kasinofFrom Laura Kasinof for Washington Monthly, an article about the post-war grief that may impact women who have served in the military differently than men. An excerpt: *While it’s clear that war is hell for everyone, men and women alike, it’s unclear how the unique female experience in the barracks, on the battlefield, and back at home may affect them differently. Female veterans are already more likely than male veterans to be homeless, divorced, or raising children as single parents. Female vets under fifty are more than twice as likely as their male counterparts to kill themselves. And a growing body of research suggests that female vets may also be more susceptible than men to psychological disorders, including PTSD.*

    *Sexual assault in the military may play a role, reports Kasinof: *Women in the military must also face “negative consequences for  reporting [abuse or harassment] or they may have to continue working with someone who has assaulted them, or they were assaulted by a commanding officer,” said Janice Krupnick, research professor at Georgetown University’s Department of Psychiatry, who works with female veterans.*

    Photo courtesy of Warrior Writers.

    Drought Creates Dilemma for Texas Farmers

    Crop Insurance in West TexasFrom Laird Townsend for Mother Jones and the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting, the story of family farmers facing drier than Dust Bowl conditions, and limited options.

    An excerpt:  *If recent research by the US Department of Agriculture is any indication, the crop failures will be a sign of the future. In a February 2013 report, the agency rounded up relevant scientific findings from 56 experts from federal service, universities, and nongovernmental organizations. The results cast doubt on the viability of the US heartland in the age of
    warming—and not just for dryland cotton. “Continued changes by mid-century and beyond,” the report said, “are expected to have generally detrimental effects on most crops and livestock.” Among other problems, “weed control costs total more than $11 billion a year in the US. Those costs are expected to rise with increasing temperatures and carbon dioxide concentrations.”*

    Photo courtesy of Ben Depp.