“How do I find sources?”
It’s a common question.
“How do I find diverse sources?” is one that is, thankfully, increasingly more common, as journalists and other writers strive to ensure that they’re not just talking to white guys as subject matter experts.
Earlier this week, I participated in a spontaneous effort to gather a group of Latinos and Latinas who identify as experts, adding them to a list that will ultimately live on the website LatinoRebels, where it can be accessed by any writer looking for a source to speak about topics as diverse as physics and punk rock. For now, you can see that list here.
In response to that list, which evolved on twitter and is not comprised of experts who went through any sort of screening process, several people tipped me off to other useful resources, which include:
National Hispanic Media Coalition’s Experts and Spokespeople List, which includes TV- and radio-ready experts in approximately a dozen subject matter areas.
Source of the Week, a project spearheaded by NPR and described as “a resource for journalists who believe in the value of diversity and share in our goal to make public radio look and sound like America [with a] growing list of radio-ready subject experts….”
There are many other such resources, too. A sampling of them includes: The AAJA maintains a list of Asian American, Pacific Islander experts.
SheSource: a clearinghouse of women who are subject matter experts
Swarthmore College’s Sources and Experts List: a roster of academics who can speak to topics as diverse as the traditional dances of Ghana and transnational feminist studies.
CDC Newsroom’s Expert List: A list of health experts.
Centers for Disease Control’s African-American Media Resources List: A list of doctors, researchers, and other health experts. There’s a contact person listed for journalists who need to speak with someone about a subject that is not included on the list. [June 2015 update- It seems that this resource is no longer being maintained by the CDC. The link above generates a 404 error and the link has also been removed from the CDC’s own website. If any readers discover this list restored, please let me know in the comments.]
South Asian Journalists Association: This professional organization can put journalists in touch with geographical and topical experts
Union of Concerned Scientists: According to this group, “Through our Science Network, we collaborate with nearly 17,000 scientists and technical experts across the country, including: physicists, ecologists, engineers, public health professionals, economists, and energy analysts. We are also a leader in science communication, helping experts explain their research more effectively and working to improve the public’s understanding of science.”
Vera Institute of Justice: “Vera’s experts conduct research and analysis and develop policies and programs in a variety of criminal and social justice fields. Their varied knowledge, background, and experience enable Vera to address the full spectrum of national and local justice issues.” A list of its experts can be found here.
Obviously, this is NOT a comprehensive list. If you have a favorite, please add it in the comments below and I’ll add it to the post, which will be a regularly updated resource.