Who are we
The Baltic Center for Investigative Journalism Re:Baltica is a non-profit organization that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. Our investigations and journalists have been quoted on The Guardian, The Washington Post, Financial Times, Mediapart, Meduza, Buzzfeed, BBC, TV Rain, Helsingin Sanomat, YLE and many other international media outlets.
Founded in August 2011, we focus on in-depth investigations of socially important issues in the Baltic region, such as corruption, crime, finances, entrepreneurship, health and human rights. Our journalism encourages transparency and reform. We are based in Riga, but work all over Baltics and beyond. We give away our work for free and encourage other media to “steal” it, just, please, notify us at rebaltica(at)rebaltica.com.
What we want
- To perform long-term, in-depth cross-border investigations of socially important issues, with a primary focus on social equality, fighting corruption and lack of transparency.
- To inform international audiences about the Baltic political, financial and social environment
- To bring new, innovative and often cost-saving journalism practices to the Baltic region
- To create a network for exchanging information among journalists in the Baltics, Scandinavia, E.U. and Russia
Who are the people
Arta Giga, Board Chair: Arta is the leading TV producer of investigative journalism in Latvia. Currently, she is the executive editor of Neka Personiga(Nothing Personal), an investigative journalism program that airs on commercial television. Prior to that, she worked in the Latvian Public Television for 15 years where she founded the award-winning and most popular investigative TV program De Facto.
Kristina Rizga, Treasurer: Together with Inga Spriņģe, Kristina co-founded Re:Baltica in 2011. She was born and raised in Latvia, but has lived in the San Francisco, California, since 1994. She’s been working as a journalist in the U.S. for eight years. In 2009, she was a fellow at the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting covering the financial collapse in her homeland Latvia. Her writing has appeared in Mother Jones, The Nation, The American Prospect, Global Post, World in Focus and Huffington Post, among others. In 2015, Kristina’s book Mission High, about inequality in the America’s schools, will be published.
Peter Folkins: Peter is from Canada, but has lived in Latvia since 2006. Before that, he worked as lawyer in Toronto, Canada, and did corporate finance, institutional sales and investment management in Mumbai and Hong Kong. In Latvia, Peter worked as a fund manager in Swedbank, was part-time lecturer in University of Latvia (business risk management), and was board member and treasurer of the Anglican Church in Riga. I also worked as a volunteer on several Re:Baltica research projects in 2012-2013.
Indrek Treufeldt: Indrek is award-winning Estonian TV journalist and filmmaker. In the early years of his career, Indrek worked as a spokesman for the first Estonia’s president after restoration of independence, Lennart Meri, and later in World Bank. However, since 1996 he has worked in the various roles in the Estonian Public Television (latest being journalist and advisor on journalism). Indrek also lectures in the Baltic Film and Media School. He holds PhD from University of Tartu and his academic interests concern the construction of the journalistic facts.
Aron Eglitis: Aron has worked as a journalist covering Latvia’s economy and politics since 2003. From 2006 he has been the correspondent for Bloomberg News in Riga. He is a graduate of the University of Washington in Seattle.
Leonid Ragozin: Leonid Ragozin was born in 1972 and graduated from the Moscow State University in 1994. After working as a translator and travel agent, he joined the BBC Monitoring in 1998, followed by BBC Russian Service in 2001. He left the BBC in 2006 to become a foreign correspondent, later foreign desk editor at the Russian Newsweek. Having returned to the BBC in 2010, he worked as a television producer with the network’s Moscow correspondents. In 2013, he embarked on a freelance career, covering the upheaval in Ukraine for variety of international outlets, including BusinessWeek, Guardian, Time, Al-Jazeera, The New Republic, Morgenbladet and others. Leonid co-authored Lonely Planet guides to Ukraine, Russia, Moscow and Trans-Siberian Railway.
Oleg Ignatiev: Oleg is a well known journalist and TV personality in Latvia. Currently on leave from LTV7 popular program “Dots on I” (Tochki nad i), he has previously worked for various outlets, including TV5.
Full time staff
Inga Spriņģe is an award winning investigative journalist, broadcaster and is one of the two founders of Re:Baltica. She started her career in 1998 in Latvian Television, and later moved on to work as an investigative journalist in the leading Latvian daily newspaper Diena. She specialised in uncovering cases of corruption, smuggling and links to organised crime. In 2010/2011, Spriņģe became a Fulbright/Humphrey scholar and spent a year in the University of Maryland, working as intern in the Washington Post and the biggest US non-profit investigative journalism organisation, The Center for Public Integrity. After returning to Latvia she established Re:Baltica and almost single handedly introduced the topic of social inequality in Latvian political and public discourse. She won the Best Investigative Journalism award from the Latvian Journalism Association for this work. In 2014 Springe was named as one of the “outstanding challengers from Central and Eastern Europe” in the project NewEurope 100 supported by Google and Financial Times. Until 2015, Spriņģe hosted weekly TV show 1to1 at the Latvian Public Television. Spriņģe is a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. She can be reached at inga.springe(at)gmail.com
Sanita Jemberga is Latvian investigative journalist who has worked in the press and television since 1996. After a brief stint at the European Commission, Sanita Jemberga returned to journalism in 2014 and now serves as the executive director and editor at the non-profit Baltic Centre of Investigative Journalism Re:Baltica. She teaches media literacy in Stockholm School of Economics in Riga. Sanita is a Latvian government representative in UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication and in 2016 stepped down as the Head of Latvian Journalists Union. She can be found at sanita.jemberga(at)gmail.com
Our multimedia editor Lote Lārmane studied media and journalism at Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences and University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire as a dr. Aina Galejs Foundation scholar. She started her work at Re:Baltica during the last year of her undergraduate studies and has previously worked with magazine IR, Latvian Regional Television and completed Erasmus internships in the UK and Malta. Lote is responsible for Re:Baltica’s external communications, homepage, video, graphics and social media, as well as working with data and assisting the investigations by other means.
We currently don’t have any active volunteers, however, we previously worked, teached and gained from the enthusiasm of Gunita Gailāne, Ilze Pole, Elīna Gulbe, Laura Zvejniece, Gundega Tupiņa, Gundars Veidemanis, Raivis Vilūns and Andra Tully.
Where can you find our work
Investigative reporting is expensive and time consuming, which is why most media outlets around the world are cutting it. The main idea behind our center is to keep this important work alive without the daily pressures of maintaining a large audience or attracting advertising. Our model centers on pushing content out through a variety of platforms rather than building a new platform and competing for readers. You can find our work at Ir, Sestdiena, TVnet.lv, MK – Latvii, The Baltic Times, TV3 Latvija, Lsm.lv and in the public broadcasters in Latvia, Eesti Express, Postimees and Delfi in Estonia, IQ, Delfi, 15min.lt in Lithuania. Our works has been published in Sweden, Finland, Russia, Ukraine and elsewhere.
Who pays for this
The U.S. Baltic Foundation provided our initial operating funds. The U.S. State Department also awarded funding, which was restricted to the development of our website and equipment purchases. The Open Society Institute in Latvia became our third funder. But that was in 2011.
Since then, Sigrid Rausing Trust, Stockholm School of Economics and various embassies have joined in. Add to the mix individual donors, crowdfunding via PayPal and the income we earn by teaching in universities, moderating the public discussions and doing research and scripting the documentaries. Lursoft and SSE gives us access to important data bases free of charge. The best law offices in Latvia work for us pro-bono.