The Tampa Bay Times investigation of Pinellas County schools, "Failure Factories," has received the National Press Foundation's Innovation in Journalism Award.
The new award recognizes organizations that are "pioneering new ways of storytelling," according to the foundation.
The investigation used an extensive database, graphics and video — as well as traditional storytelling methods —to show how resegregation transformed five once-average Pinellas schools into the worst in the state.
The NPF judges said the Times investigation "surfaced the disastrous impact of resegregation of its local schools. Its innovative use of data visualizations encouraged the reader to see the impact and interact with the data."
The NPF, a nonprofit dedicated to the professional development for journalists, also announced that the Best Use of Technology in Journalism Award went to the Des Moines Register and Gannett Product for two projects, "Iowa State Fair Soapbox" and "Harvest of Change," which used virtual reality and 360-degree video.
"Our new digital awards showcase the true innovation in our newsrooms today," said NPF board chairman Heather Dahl. "Both winners clearly demonstrated that some of the most interesting digital journalism is being created in organizations that combine their legacy of traditional news values while experimenting with new technologies."
Other journalists who will be honored at NPF's annual awards dinner on Feb. 11 include Diane Rehm, host of The Diane Rehm Show on NPR; Charlie Rose, co-anchor of CBS This Morning and host of the Charlie Rose show on PBS; and John F. Harris and Jim VandeHei, co-founders of POLITICO.