I am a graphics-, coder- and data-journalist based in Berlin.

Update Aug 2021: I am looking for freelance/contract work from January 2022 onwards!

📬 Contact

  • ✉️ basile-at-basilesimon-dot-fr 🔐 PGP
  • 📞 +49 172 253 9671 (Signal/Telegram)
  • 🔗 @basilesimon on some social platforms

👔 Past employment

My journalism career started in the UK, where I worked for large broadcasters, newspapers, and agencies.

  • Graphics editor, Europe, Middle East and Africa, Reuters
  • Senior interactive journalist, The Times and The Sunday Times
  • Newsroom developer, The Times and the Sunday Times
  • Coder-journalist, BBC News Labs

I also co-founded Airwars, a non-profit monitoring organisation exposing the harm done to civilians by air conflicts.


Portfolio

For Prototype Fund:
The Digital Evidence Toolkit

Public/private 50,000€ grant for the research and development of proof-of-concept techniques highlighting the uncertain legal framework of digital evidence admissibility.

🔗 See the piece
👉 Read all about it

Typescript Svelte Grant

For Global Witness:
The “Pipedown” map

A short contract bringing to life the dataset on which GW’s campaign was based, modular once again, and published both from the CMS and as a standalone.

🔗 See the piece
👉 Read all about it

Visualisation Cartography D3 Svelte NGO

For Reuters:
Brexit through machine learning

A data-driven experiment looking at how Brexit splits the Tories. Don’t miss the even-nerdier, machine learning-driven complement.

🔗 See the piece
👉 Read all about it

Visualisation R Data modelling Scraping

For The Times & Sunday Times:
90% of all British crimes are unsolved

Collaboration with the Data team to bring this multi-week exclusive analysis of police data to life in just over two days.

🔗 See the piece

Visualisation D3 React

For Christmas:
Pen plotter maps

Pen-plotted bicycle journeys on postcards, from a minimal implementation of GPX in R.

👉 Read all about it

Visualisation R Pen plotter

Open source work

Fortunately I was able to open-source some of the work I have done:

deptoolkit

An archiving software demonstrating chain of custody based on an immutable ledger

on github

noaastorms

An R package to download, parse and clean historical storms data from the NOAA

on github

d3-grid

A fork in d3v4 of the beloved d3-grid

on github

twitter-tools

A Python toolkit to monitor deleted tweets, automate screenshoting, and archiving

on github

The Times' Dataviz catalogue

A public resource of data viz code and designs, a la Storybook/ FT Visual Vocabulary

on github

🎓 Academic work

I had the privilege of teaching the Advanced Data and Coding module on the MA in Interactive Journalism course at City University. We ran through an introduction to programming, statistical methods, R data analysis and modelling with ggplot.

All my teaching notes are available on Github.

I have done some studying myself:

  • Master of Arts in Multimedia Journalism - Univ. of Westminster (UK)
  • Masters in Political Science and Sociology - High European Studies Institute (France)
  • BA Private Law, minor Political Science - Univ. Lyon III (France)

🏅 Awards

Award of Excellence, 2019, Society of News Design

  • The Brexit Rift Splitting the Conservative Party
  • Not Far Ahead

Long list, 2019, Kantar Information is Beautiful

  • Reading the Brexit Tea Leaves
  • The Brexit Rift Splitting the Conservative Party
  • Not Far Ahead

🎙 Talks and publications

  • “Working with data in the newsroom”
    in The Data Journalism Handbook (Amsterdam University Press, 2021)
  • “Career paths for news nerds (or lack of them)”
    International Journalism Festival 2018, Perugia
  • “Airwars.org: a field report,two years on”
    Hacks/Hackers Berlin 2017
  • “Airwars: strike by strike”
    Dataharvest 2016, Brussels + Hacks/Hackers Berlin
  • “Hackers trying to stay relevant: linked data and structured journalism at the BBC”
    csv,conf,v2 2016, Berlin
  • “Passion > compensation”
    Sud Web 2016, France
  • “Hacking the newsroom”
    International Journalism Festival 2016, Perugia
  • “BBC News Labs, Linked Data, Datastringer: the Hacks and Hackers paradigm”
    Computation + Journalism Symposium 2014, New York City
  • “Algorithms in Journalism: danger or opportunity?”
    Assises du Journalism 2014, France