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Lam Thuy Vo

  1. Data-Journalist-in-Residence

Lam Thuy Vo was a senior reporter at BuzzFeed News where she dug into data to examine how systems and policies affected individuals.

She has explored how excessive ‘quality-of-life’ complaints led to the over-policing of minorities, how badly constructed algorithms helped spread hate-speech and warp our understanding of politics, and how changes in immigration enforcement drove immigrants into the arms of fraudulent lawyers. Previously, she reported for The Wall Street Journal, Al Jazeera America, and NPR’s Planet Money and told economic and political stories across the U.S. and throughout Asia.

She has spent the past few years building an expertise in an increasingly relevant practice: investigating the social web. She has brought her research to scholars in closed and public circles at institutions such as Harvard, MIT, Columbia, and Data and Society. She also wrote a Python book about her empirical approach to finding stories in data from the internet for No Starch Press (nostarch.com/miningsocialmedia).

She has also worked as an educator for a decade, developing newsroom-wide training programs for Al Jazeera America, The Wall Street Journal, and others, and courses for the Newmark J-School. She has taught at conferences put on by the Asian American Journalists Association, the Native American Journalists Association, the National Association of Black Journalists, and the Online News Association and has led hands-on workshops for journalists in places as far-flung as Nairobi, Kenya, Yangon, Myanmar, and Karachi, Pakistan.

She is committed to helping her industry become more diverse. She co-administers a slack community for journalists of color (journalistsofcolor.us) and co-created a resource guide for journalists of color (jocresources.com) looking for career growth, salary data, demographics breakdowns of newsrooms, and training opportunities.

Lam graduated with honors from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism with a major in New Media and has a degree in German with Italian Studies from University College London.