Journo Jobs

CalMatters seeks a digital democracy reporter

September 8, 2023

Posted by Mariam Ahmed

If you are a reporter who is ready to use the latest technologies to look behind the scenes at politics in California, you may be a good fit for Digital Democracy, a soon-to-launch feature from the award-winning nonprofit newsroom, CalMatters.

Essentially, we are building bots and scrapers to collect a variety of government data including campaign donations, gifts and travel, lobbyists and their activities, bill information, votes, hearing transcripts, district data about politics and demographics and more. A custom-built AI tool will analyze that data and generate a “tipsheet” for reporters with possible story ideas.

This ambitious new project is being watched nationally for lessons about technology and the future of journalism. We are looking for a reporter who is excited to help us build Digital Democracy and anxious to write a variety of stories about the activities of legislators throughout California. This reporter should be a clean writer with a knack for the fact-based analysis that reveals the drama behind high-stakes policy decisions.

This position is based within regular commuting distance of Sacramento and requires frequent work at the Capitol covering state lawmakers.

Responsibilities include:

  • Help us train the AI by reviewing “tipsheets” and adjusting the technology to identify the best story ideas.
  • Review tipsheets and pick the best local, regional or statewide story ideas. Dive into the database to gather more detail and make contacts throughout the Capitol to report and write quality stories about the activities of legislators and how the policy-making process is shaped by politics, interest groups and other influences.
  • Contribute to our story production, including work with our CMS, creating data graphics and using SEO best practices.
  • Collaborate with beat reporters at CalMatters as well as reporters throughout the state who will be invited to access the Digital Democracy tool.

Strongly preferred:

  • Familiarity with California state government
  • Familiarity with the state’s diverse communities
  • Skilled in campaign finance collection and analysis
  • The ability to report and write in English and Spanish


The salary range for this position is $70,000 to $90,000 per year; higher compensation may be available for someone with advanced skills and/or experience.

For further information click here.

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