This discussion will cover the full scope of putting together long-form investigative pieces, including: what topics appeal to audiences; how can you make complex issues interesting and easy to understand; is television, the web, radio or print the best medium for long-form reports; and what methods of funding or business models are best suited to support in-depth stories.
Ira Glass, Host and Producer, This American Life
David Remnick, Editor, The New Yorker
Raney Aronson-Rath, Series Senior Producer, PBS Frontline
Stephen Engelberg, Managing Editor, ProPublica
Moderated by Alison Stewart, Co-Anchor, PBS Need To Know.
Sponsored by ProPublica and The New School.
As deputy executive producer for PBS’ flagship public affairs documentary series Frontline, Raney Aronson-Rath guides the editorial development and execution of the series, from primetime television broadcasts to multiplatform initiatives. With Executive Producer David Fanning, she oversees all phases of production and runs the daily editorial management of the series, as well as Frontline’s new monthly magazine program. Instrumental in spearheading the magazine launch, Aronson-Rath works to re-imagine long-form documentary while maintaining the excellence in journalism and production for which Frontline is known. Since joining Frontline in 2007, Aronson-Rath has expanded the series’ reach and reporting capabilities. Under her leadership, Frontline has significantly grown its broadcast and digital audiences. Aronson-Rath has also developed and managed more than a dozen in-depth, cross-platform journalism partnerships with some of the nation’s premiere news outlets, including ProPublica, American Public Media’s Marketplace, PBS NewsHour, CBC Television and most recently ESPN. Before helping to manage the series, Aronson-Rath produced, directed and wrote several award-winning Frontline films, including "News War," "The Last Abortion Clinic" and "The Jesus Factor." Prior to joining Frontline, she worked on award-winning series at ABC News, The Wall Street Journal and MSNBC. Early in her career, while living in Taipei, she was a newspaper reporter for The China Post. Aronson-Rath has a Bachelor’s degree in South Asian studies and history from the University of Wisconsin. She received her Master’s from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
Stephen Engelberg was the founding managing editor of ProPublica from 2008-2012, and became Editor-in-Chief on January 1, 2013. He came to ProPublica from The Oregonian in Portland, where he had been a managing editor since 2002. Before joining The Oregonian, Engelberg worked for The New York Times for 18 years, including stints in Washington, D.C., and Warsaw, Poland, as well as in New York. He is a member of the Pulitzer Prize Board and of the Board of Directors of the American Society of News Editors. After beginning his career at The Times, he worked as a reporter for The Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk and for The Dallas Morning News before returning to The Times to write news and investigative articles on national security matters. After a stint as The Times bureau chief in Warsaw immediately following the collapse of Communism, he resumed his work as an investigative reporter in 1993. Engelberg shared in two George Polk Awards for reporting: the first, in 1989, for articles on nuclear proliferation; the second, in 1994, for articles on U.S. immigration. A group of articles he co-authored in 1995 on an airplane crash was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize. Engelberg’s work since 1996 has focused largely on the editing of investigative projects. He started The Times's investigative unit in 2000. Projects he supervised at The Times on Mexican corruption (published in 1997) and the rise of al-Qaeda (published beginning in January 2001) were awarded the Pulitzer Prize. During his years at The Oregonian, the paper won the Pulitzer for breaking news and was a finalist for its investigative work on methamphetamines and charities intended to help the disabled. He is the co-author of Germs: Biological Weapons and America's Secret War (2001).
Ira Glass is an American public radio personality, and host and producer of the radio and television show This American Life.
David Remnick is the editor of The New Yorker. He is the author of several books, including "Lenin's Tomb," which won the Pulitzer Prize and the George Polk Award, and "The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama."
David Scobey, executive dean of The New School for Public Engagement and a national leader in developing innovative methods to bring higher-education institutions together with communities to explore the arts, humanities, and design. Scobey is the author of Empire City: The Making and Meaning of the New York City Landscape and other studies of politics, culture, and space in 19th-century America.
Alison Stewart is an American radio and television journalist. She was one of the hosts of the Bryant Park Project, a morning drive news program from NPR. Stewart first gained widespread visibility as a political correspondent for MTV News in the 1990s.