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14 June 2018

Shortlist Announced For Paul Foot Award 2018

The Guardian, The Observer, The Times and The Sunday Post have been shortlisted for the 2018 Paul Foot Award, selected from a record number of entries from digital media, national and regional publications. The Award, organised by Private Eye in memory of journalist Paul Foot, recognises the UK’s most determined and skilled journalists whose work over the last year showcases the power of traditional investigative and campaigning journalism.

The shortlisted entries include The Observer’s Carole Cadwalladr, who had begun to explore the data analytics company Cambridge Analytica in December 2016, which subsequently sparked a far-reaching 18-month technology investigation into the use of data in elections and a series of stories on data-driven advertising and messaging using social media. The investigation caught international interest with Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg being summoned to testify before Congress and the European parliament, and a series of witnesses asked to appear before the DCMS Select Committee. 

The Guardian reporter Amelia Gentleman, whose story exposed the Windrush scandal, investigated tightened immigration regulations and their tragic consequences. Gentleman’s campaign eventually led to a public apology from the Prime Minister, the resignation of then Home Secretary, Amber Rudd and the promise that members of the Windrush generation would no longer be threatened with deportation.

Sean O’Neill at the Times revealed the Oxfam sex scandal cover-up after investigating allegations that Oxfam employees were exploiting victims of natural disasters in Haiti. Mr O’Neill’s story incited an inquiry into the charity’s conduct and calls for implementing stricter protection measures across the sector.

The Sunday Post’s investigation by Gordon Blackstock into a Lanarkshire children’s home exposed that between 1864-1981, children who had died at the Smyllum Park orphanage had been buried in unmarked graves. After publication, the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul, who ran the orphanage, promised to erect a memorial for the children, including all the names of those who had died. The Post’s evidence was submitted to the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry.

Paul Foot 2018

Padraig Reidy, chair of the Judges, said: “In a relentless torrent of breaking news, it's a privilege to read work by journalists who have taken time and care to uncover stories that make a difference".

The winning entry for 2018 will be awarded £5,000 at an evening awards ceremony to be held on Tuesday 19 June at BAFTA, London.