Please note: The deadline for proposals has expired. However, if you have suggestions for papers or panels, the organizing committee would still be interested in seeing them.

The University of Winnipeg and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation are pleased to invite proposals from journalists and academics that explore linkages between investigative journalism, democracy and international human rights. We invite proposals for panels, papers or practice work presentations that explore these issues in Canada and around the world.

We have already received a wide variety of proposals from academics and practicing journalists in five continents.

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Potential topics may include but are not limited to:

  • The history and/or continuing importance of investigative journalism into human rights
  • Tracking corruption and crime locally and globally
  • Cross –border investigations: new techniques and partnerships
  • The intersections amongst citizen journalism, investigative journalism, and rights advocacy
  • Journalistic definitions of human rights and human rights stories.
  • Investigating the powerful inside repressive regimes: how is it to be done?
  • Investigating criminal justice abuses: wrongful convictions, wrongful imprisonment, and torture
  • The limits of traditional investigative journalism to explore aboriginal human rights: Idle No More and investigative journalism
  • The growth of investigative journalism in Eastern Europe and Africa
  • Ethics of the expose: how far should investigative journalists go in getting and reporting the story?
  • The intersections between deliberative democracy and citizen journalism
  • Political scandal and investigative journalism – what’s the next “gate”?
  • Investigative journalism and the moral imagination: whetting the public appetite for human rights
  • Investigative journalism and affect: cultivating vulnerabilities/making audiences care
  • The cultural role of the investigative journalist: hero or villain?
  • Reporting local and global human rights stories

The goal of the conference is to bring practicing journalists together with academics who study journalistic practice. While individual presentations should be original and thought provoking in themselves, their resonance should build when placed in combination with other perspectives. Each session should provide fodder for follow-up discussion. Included in the conference program will be social and cultural events, tours, exhibitions, and keynote speakers and panels.

Some sessions will be live-streamed and available on a conference website. Following the conference, selected papers will be published in a print volume.

Submission Guidelines

Abstracts should be submitted for peer review by December 6, 2013. Proposers will be notified via email of proposal acceptance by January 15, 2014.

If you have questions about the conference or process, contact:

Individual Papers

Provide a 250 word abstract for individual presentations (about 20 minutes). These will be combined to comprise sessions with three participants.

Individual presentations may be in the form of academic papers or journalistic practice work, which could include practice artifacts such as screenings or website demonstrations. For practice, please include specific technical requirements in proposal.


Full panel proposals for a 90-minute session should include a short description and rationale (200 words) along with abstracts for each of the presentations (250 words each) and contact details for all panelists and technical requirements. Session formats that allow for audience participation and engagement are encouraged.