Looking back, looking forward

Are we on the right path? That was the key question the pays-bas tour was supposed to answer. 2 cities, 2 events, one goal: validation.

And validate we did. What was there to validate? Loads, actually. The potential for platform adoption and sustainability, the direction it should take, stories, features, the needs of the audience it is addressing, their traits, background and modus operandi..

But this all sounds too vague. An audience is something people use in formal business language, and that was definitely not how this crowd rolls. That does not mean that they are not to be taken seriously – the work of some of these people do speaks for itself.

What mostly defines the essence of this community imho is its inquisitive spirit, its sense of purpose and the collaborative mindset these people seem to have when approaching the next big story.

We had interesting and in-depth conversations about the future of the industry, the platform and the world at large. We had fun chit-chat over beers and dinner. We did what people in conferences are supposed to do.

And this conference is growing alongside the industry itself: more people, bigger budgets, more credit. That is where data journalism is headed.

But mapping the data journalism landscape and validating concepts and directions was not all we did. We also connected with the local open data and maker communities, exchanged views and got an idea on what is it that people are working on and how. All in all, a valuable experience.

That is all fine and well of course, but now what? What’s next for Climate Watch? It was not long after returning to Athens that we received some more good news: Climate Watch has been selected to participate in Climate Launchpad! Climate Launchpad is an accelerator program┬áthat aims to help people with ideas that could have an impact on the environment take their idea to the next level and realize its potential. So this is a great opportunity for Climate Watch to move forward, and that’s exactly what we are going to do!