Journalist (Coding)

Please Note: The application deadline for this job has now passed.

Job Introduction

The Shared Data Unit (SDU) is looking for a creative data journalist (computer-assisted reporter) to boost its data journalism output and help implement its data journalism programme for the wider local news sector.

The SDU sits within the Local News Partnerships, a partnership between the BBC and the UK regional news industry, which aims to support public service reporting, sustain local democracy and improve skills in journalism.

The role involves working on exclusive investigative data journalism projects for use across national BBC platforms, BBC local radio and television outlets, and a large network of regional titles and broadcasters. 

You will be expected to combine a high degree of technical skill – in terms of finding, interrogating and visualising data – alongside traditional journalistic skills.

Role Responsibility

To generate original ideas for impactful data-driven investigations that will resonate with regional audiences and the wider BBC

•             To interrogate and process large datasets demonstrating knowledge of programming languages such as Python / R

•             To explore ways of presenting and communicating stories to a diverse and large client base

•             To be aware of and have experience of gathering data from a wide variety of data sources including interrogating web APIs

•             To use Freedom of Information laws

•             To visualise data using visualisation tools such as Tableau, Flourish and Datawrapper, and the ggplot2 package in R

•             To visualize and to find patterns in spatial data using GIS software

•             To help develop online learning in data journalism for local news partners


Are you the right candidate?

You will be a self-starter, brimming with story ideas, adept at handling datasets and statistics and have the expertise to delve beneath the headline figures to deliver the whole story to our audiences. 

You will be expected to have your own original ideas on how best to engage our audience with original data-driven journalism. You will be open to working alongside journalists from across media organisations, and engaged and excited by the possibilities of collaboration.

You will have knowledge of, and experience, of retrieving data from open sources, as well as experience of using web scraping tools.

Package Description

Band: C
Contract type: Permanent
Location: Birmingham

We’re happy to discuss flexible working. Please indicate your choice under the flexible working question in the application. There is no obligation to raise this at the application stage but if you wish to do so, you are welcome to. Flexible working will be part of the discussion at offer stage.

  • Excellent career progression – the BBC offers great opportunities for employees to seek new challenges and work in different areas of the organisation.
  • Unrivalled training and development opportunities – our in-house Academy hosts a wide range of internal and external courses and certification.
  • Benefits- We offer a competitive salary package, a flexible 35-hour working week for work-life balance and 26 days (1 of which is a corporation day) with the option to buy an extra 5 days, a defined pension scheme and discounted dental, health care, gym and much more.

The situation regarding the coronavirus outbreak is developing quickly and the BBC is keen to continue to ensure the safety and wellbeing of people across the BBC, while continuing to protect our services. To reduce the risk access to BBC buildings is limited to those essential to our broadcast output. From Wednesday 18th March until further notice all assessments and interviews will be conducted remotely. For more information go to


About the BBC

We don’t focus simply on what we do – we also care how we do it. Our values and the way we behave are important to us. Please make sure you’ve read about our values and behaviours in the document attached below.

Diversity matters at the BBC. We have a working environment where we value and respect every individual's unique contribution, enabling all of our employees to thrive and achieve their full potential.

We want to attract the broadest range of talented people to be part of the BBC – whether that’s to contribute to our programming or our wide range of non-production roles. The more diverse our workforce, the better able we are to respond to and reflect our audiences in all their diversity. 

We are committed to equality of opportunity and welcome applications from individuals, regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, socio-economic background, religion and/or belief. We will consider flexible working requests for all roles, unless operational requirements prevent otherwise.

To find out more about Diversity and Inclusion at the BBC, please click here

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