The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) announced today that it has joined American Public Media’s (APM) Public Insight Network (PIN). Through PIN, investigative journalists from CIR’s California Watch project, in partnership with KQED pubic radio and television, will have access to over 96,000 citizen sources from across the country, as well as the technology to identify trends and collaborate with other journalists on ground breaking investigations. The announcement was made today at the Online News Association conference in Washington D.C., where ProPublica and the Center for Public Integrity also announced that they’ve joined the network.

“The Center for Investigative Reporting is looking forward to using the Public Insight Network and its social media tools to interact with the public, broaden our knowledge and inform our reporting,” said Robert Rosenthal, executive director of the Center for Investigative Reporting. “We realize that newsrooms today must have a culture where technological innovation is central and married to quality journalism. This network is another arrow in our quiver of information gathering and interactivity. We are proud to join the network with our colleagues from ProPublica and CPI. The platform will expand our ability to collaborate, gather information and reach growing and diverse audiences with high quality, trusted information.”

The Public Insight Network, funded in part by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, provides individuals a direct channel for sharing their knowledge, experience and insights with reporters around the country. This collaborative model in turn helps newsrooms improve journalistic context, depth and quality while forging deeper connections with the communities they cover.

“The Center for Investigative Reporting, with its devotion to in-depth collaboration, high-impact journalism and adaptive technologies, and the Public Insight Network, with its growing stable of newsrooms and citizen sources, is a powerful combination,” said Linda Fantin, director of network journalism and innovation at American Public Media. “Together we will nurture the public’s role in newsgathering, leverage that intelligence to hold the powerful accountable, and work to secure a sustainable future for investigative reporting in the networked age.”

In 2009, the Center for Investigative Reporting launched California Watch, which is now the largest investigative unit in the state. California Watch seeks to produce high-impact stories that prompt change, serve the public and reach audiences in new ways. Since its launch, the organization has received numerous accolades for its investigations, including the being named a 2010 finalist for the Online News Association “General Excellence” award; 2010 “Journalists of the Year” from the Northern California chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists; and 2010 winner in the investigative reporting category, also from the Northern California chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

“CIR, through its California Watch initiative, is changing the way news happens in California. It is nimble, accessible, and optimized for collaboration with a network of partners that focuses on journalism first and legacy assumptions second,” said Joaquin Alvarado, American Public Media’s Vice President of Digital Innovation. “Public Insight is a platform for changing relationships between newsrooms and communities. Together CIR and Public Insight will deepen the impact of the reporting in the California and provide a model for communities in desperate need for a re-engineered journalism.”

To learn more about American Public Media’s Public Insight Network, visit

About California Watch and The Center for Investigative Reporting

California Watch, the largest investigative team operating in the state, was launched in 2009 by the nonprofit, nonpartisan Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR). Priority areas of coverage include education, health and welfare, public safety, the environment and the influence of money on the political and regulatory process. The goal is to expose hidden truths, prompt debate and spark change. California Watch receives funding from The James Irvine Foundation, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Founded in 1977, the Center for Investigative Reporting is the nation’s oldest nonprofit investigative news organization. CIR reports have reached the public through television, print, radio and the web, appearing in outlets such as 60 Minutes, PBS Frontline, NPR, The Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Politico and U.S. News & World Report. CIR stories have received numerous journalism awards including the Alfred I. du Pont-Columbia University Silver Baton, George Polk Award, Emmy Award, Investigative Reporters and Editors Award, and National Magazine Award for Reporting Excellence. More importantly, its reports have sparked congressional hearings and legislation, United Nations resolutions, public interest lawsuits and change in corporate policies. CIR founded California Watch to help create a new model for regional investigative and other high-impact reporting.

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Meghann Farnsworth is the managing director of distribution, operations and engagement for Reveal and The Center for Investigative Reporting. She manages teams dedicated to website production and management, technology, analytics, social media, distribution, newsletters, online and on-the-ground community building, arts collaborations, and youth engagement. She also helps develop and support media partnerships and collaborations for Reveal’s national public radio show and podcast. Previously, Farnsworth was the senior digital media manager at Home Front Communications in Washington, D.C., where she worked in digital media management, interactive development and outreach for nonprofit and government clients. She also served as the associate editor of Forums at PBS NewsHour, where she created interactive online forums that helped increase and engage the NewsHour's online audience. She was an inaugural member of the Online News Association-Poynter Leadership Academy for Women in Digital Media, and she has presented at conferences across the country, including SXSW, ONA, the Logan Symposium, the Reynolds Journalism Institute and others. She earned her master's degree in journalism from UC Berkeley and undergraduate degree at the University of Oregon. Farnsworth is based at Reveal's Emeryville, California, office.