Max Harlow

I work on the visual and data journalism team at the Financial Times in London.

I also organise Journocoders, a community of journalists and other people working in the media interested in developing technical skills for use in their reporting.


  1. Typo leaks millions of US military emails to Mali web operator

    Financial Times

    Revealed that a common spelling error has misdirected sensitive Pentagon messages to a company running Mali’s internet domain. I processed mailbox data so it could be searched.

  2. High Court judges invested in tax avoidance schemes

    Financial Times

    Identified three High Court judges that invested in tax avoidance schemes, including one judge who has ruled on tax avoidance cases. I matched up details of judges of the High Court with records from Companies House.

More clippings


  1. CSV Match

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

  2. Ship Overviewer

    Processes ship tracking data and generates a summary of where the vessel has been, and identifies any gaps. It can also highlight where data has changed, which can be used to spot where transponder data has been spoofed.

More projects


  1. How to be a (better) data editor

    Dataharvest 2022Mechelen, Belgium

    As data journalism has become mainstream, more data editor positions have been created. But what makes a good data editor? In this panel we will discuss what it takes to do the job effectively, the different things it can involve, and the different routes to getting there. With Marie-Louise Timcke, Jan Strozyk, Helena Bengtsson, Eva Belmonte, and Dominik Balmer, moderated by me.

  2. Investigative data journalism

    Journalism by Numbers, Birkbeck UniversityLondon, UK

    Guest lecture covering the origins of investigative data journalism, the nature of data in investigations, where it comes from, plus what code is and how it is used in the newsroom to do this kind of work.

More talks


  1. Time travel for beginners: how to create and use web archives

    Global Investigative Journalism Conference 2023Gothenburg, Sweden

    Ever relied upon an online source, only later to find it deleted or changed? This class covers how to get the most out of resources like the Wayback Machine – what they’re good for, and what they’re not. We also cover when and how to build your own private archives of web content.

  2. Web basics: how the web works, and how to scrape it

    CIJ Summer Conference 2023London, UK

    Have you ever wondered how exactly your stories reach your readers? Ever wanted to know how to build a simple webpage? Or how to scrape information from the web? This session covers the principles of how web pages get onto your screen, and working with the two key web technologies of HTML and CSS. Dataharvest sessions taught with Rui Barros.

More teaching