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University of Iowa News Release

 

July 21, 2008

Des Moines Register wins Iowa Gallup Award for excellent journalism using polls

The University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communication and The Gallup Organization have named The Des Moines Register the recipient of the 2007 Iowa Gallup Award, an annual award recognizing excellent journalism using polls.

The award-winning entry, "The Iowa Caucuses" was published on The Register's Web site on Dec. 31, 2007 and ran in the newspaper the following day. It was selected for the Iowa Gallup Award for accuracy in analyzing and interpreting data, clarity of presentation, and implications for public discourse.

As the recipient of the Iowa Gallup Award, The Des Moines Register will receive a $2,500 stipend and a medallion, and be honored at a presentation this fall at the Gallup World Headquarters in Washington, D.C.

"It is fitting that this year's Iowa Gallup Award winner is closely linked to this unprecedented election," said Jim Clifton, chairman and CEO of Gallup. "I commend The Des Moines Register's outstanding work in placing the voice of the Iowa electorate squarely into the nation's political dialog and ensuring that the will of Iowans, and the nation, were included in this historic race."

The Iowa Gallup Award is a joint endeavor to honor George H. Gallup, an Iowa native who earned three degrees from the UI, was an instructor with the School of Journalism, and founded the Quill and Scroll, an international honorary society for high school journalists. Quill and Scroll, with 14,104 chapters, has kept its ties with the university and has offices in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

The award recognizes the importance of the news media's use of polls in understanding public opinion and shaping discourse on social and political issues. Journalists' accurate, creative and intelligent analysis of polling data can add depth and dimension to their reporting, as well as enhance the quality of public debate. The award is designed to reward news media stories that feature such analysis and thus promote the best use and presentation of polls and data in journalism and media.

Marc Armstrong, director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, thanked the judges who reviewed the entries.

"Polls play a prominent role in framing political discourse. Journalists also must be able to use information derived from polls to help them write compelling narratives," he said. "The team of experts that evaluated the entries for the competition this year did an outstanding job of rating the entries, considering factors such as innovation, writing style and impact. We certainly appreciate the effort that went into the evaluation process."

ABC News and The Washington Post are past winners of the award, which is in its third year. Details of the judging criteria, including the requirements, and an entry form can be found at http://www.uiowa.edu/jmc/GallupAward.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Arlecia D. Simmons, UI School of Journalism and Mass Communication, arlecia-simmons@uiowa.edu; Nicole Riehl, University News Services, 319-384-0070, nicole-riehl@uiowa.edu