EMERYVILLE, Calif. – The Center for Investigative Reporting and the News Lab at Google are joining forces for an eight-part event series dedicated to connecting journalists with technologists and designers. The goal of the TechRaking series is to develop transformative ideas and solutions to important challenges that communities face around the world, and specifically challenges that affect journalists in reporting news and information.

“TechRaking brings the core values of CIR and Google together to help communities develop access to information in ways that improve their lives,” said Joaquin Alvarado, CEO of CIR. “We see our collaboration as a catalyst for developing solutions and networks that will help us all ignite the creativity and commitment necessary to help meet the challenges we face in journalism, technology and ensuring access to critical information for everyone.”

Launched by CIR in 2012, the TechRaking series has emphasized collaboration, inspiration and results. At the core of each event is a design challenge, with attendees forming teams to create viable and creative solutions to the proposed problem. Previous successful examples have included a video game for kids to explore healthy school lunches, an app to showcase rail safety across Canada, a community engagement campaign to explore the impact of gun violence in urban communities (development in progress) and a web app for exposing politically motivated manipulation of Wikipedia.

The launch of the new TechRaking series in 2015 will ensure that new tools necessary to produce impactful and accessible journalism will emerge, as well as a new suite of applications, projects and networks to advance the intersection of the journalism, design and technology fields.

CIR and Google will launch TechRaking internationally by convening in London in March. Three to four international events will be announced in the coming months.

About The Center for Investigative Reporting

The Center for Investigative Reporting empowers the public through groundbreaking storytelling that sparks action, improves lives and protects our democracy. Reveal – the website, public radio program, podcast and social media platform – is where CIR publishes its multiplatform reporting. Devoted to holding powerful interests accountable to the public trust, CIR creatively employs cutting-edge technology and innovative storytelling to reveal injustice, spark change at all levels of society and influence public dialogue on critical issues. It produces high-impact reporting across print, video, TV, radio and online platforms and is the recipient of the prestigious MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions, winner of a 2013 Emmy Award and a 2013 George Foster Peabody Award, and a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2012 (for local reporting) and 2013 (for public service). Learn more at revealnews.org. Find and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

About the News Lab at Google

Our mission at the News Lab at Google is to collaborate with journalists and entrepreneurs to build the future of media with Google. We’re excited to be working with CIR on this series of TechRaking events throughout 2015.

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Kristin Belden is the chief of staff for The Center for Investigative Reporting, managing diverse programs, projects and strategic initiatives across the organization. Previously, Belden served as CIR’s director of events, focusing on audience engagement and highlighting the work of Reveal's reporters and producers. She has a background in arts and business, earning her bachelor's degree in art and design, working in art galleries in Spain and San Francisco, and subsequently taking on a role in the media and entertainment sector at McKinsey & Co. During her time at McKinsey, she worked with the group that eventually would launch The Bay Citizen, a nonprofit journalism organization that merged with CIR in 2012. Belden helped build The Bay Citizen's infrastructure and launched its first event series in 2010. Belden is based in Sacramento.