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New initiative announced

Official press release here.

Announcement from business editors Greg Schneider and David Cho:

With the news of Ezra Klein’s departure, we received a lot of queries about the future of Wonkblog. Rest assured, Wonkblog will continue. We will be making new hires and adding fresh voices to maintain Wonkblog as the premier destination for the fastest, smartest coverage and analysis of policy in Washington. Stay tuned for announcements as we roll out new members of the team.

In addition, we have plans to further expand our policy coverage and reach new readers beyond Wonkblog’s core audience. The new initiative, as yet unnamed, will harness one of the Post’s great historical strengths: storytelling. It will combine top-shelf writing, razor-sharp data analysis and rich human drama to explain and illuminate complicated public policy topics for our audience. The site will feature a steady stream of data-driven, narrative stories, with words, photographs and video; vibrant graphics that explain complex trends; and a variety of frontier-pushing approaches to engage readers in conversations about how to solve America’s biggest problems. In other words, we will tell stories through the voices of ordinary Americans, we will tell stories with numbers, and we will tell stories with our users’ help.

 Leading the effort will be Jim Tankersley, one of the nation’s top writers and thinkers about economic policy. Jim joined us over a year ago from National Journal, where he led the yearlong Restoration Calls project, which explored the biggest issues facing America and how to solve them. While at the Toledo Blade in 2007, Jim and a colleague won the Livingston Award for Young Journalists for a series that used human stories and data analysis to reveal the true roots of Ohio’s economic decline. He was also part of the “Coingate” team at the Blade that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. A frequent contributor to Wonkblog, Jim has been honing this new idea for some time. Joining him will be a core staff of new writers and data wizards, who are already being recruited and hired. The project will also feature contributions from current staff members throughout the newsroom, such as Eli Saslow, Monica Hesse and David Fahrenthold. We will launch in the spring, with more details to come.