Max Harlow

I’m a newsroom developer at the Financial Times. Previously I’ve worked at the Guardian, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, and Ordnance Survey’s Geovation Hub.

I also co-run Journocoders, a group helping journalists and other people working in the media to develop technical skills for use in their reporting.


  1. Newsagent

    Automatically identify potential story leads. Lets you create autonomous bots which poll data sources and run predefined data analysis. Results are then compared to the last time the bot ran – and any additions or deletions trigger an email alert.

  2. Graphik

    Create simple static charts quickly – a tool for the non-technical. Can be easily customised to your organisation's house style using a simple stylesheet.

  3. Reconcile

    Enrich data by doing batch lookups against various online services. For example, quickly convert a list of company names into a list of directors of those companies.

  4. CSV Match

    Finds matches in two spreadsheets, optionally using various fuzzy-matching algorithms. Used by organisations including the Guardian, the Times, and news agency Irin who used it to identify a company the United Nations had a contract with who was also on its own sanctions list.

More projects


  1. Building a culture of knowledge sharing in journalism

    Dataharvest 2017Mechelen, Belgium

    As data becomes increasingly important to journalism reporters need to keep their skills up to date. However, newsrooms have less budget for training and conferences than ever before. This was a lightning talk on how Journocoders tries to solve these problems. Video here. Slides here.

  2. The power of fuzzy: finding connections in a messy world

    CSV Conf 2017Portland, USA

    Like our reality, our data is often messy. Finding meaningful connections between such datasets often means using fuzzy matching algorithms. This was a high-level look at some of the most commonly used algorithms, their pros and cons, and how they are used in practice. Slides here.

More talks


  1. Finding needles in haystacks with fuzzy matching

    Nicar 2018Chicago, USA

    Fuzzy matching has become an increasingly important part of data-led investigations as a way to identify connections between public figures, key people and companies that are relevant to a story. This class will show attendees how it typically fits into the investigative process, and give a practical introduction to using the CSV Match tool I developed. Slides here.

  2. GitHub for journalists

    Nicar 2018Chicago, USA

    Whether you find yourself collaborating on code, data, or prose, GitHub can work for journalists. This class will cover what GitHub is, the benefits of using it, and how it is typically used both by people doing data analysis and by developers. Attendees will be shown how to create a first repository and make pull requests. Slides here.

More teaching