Exeter Observer is looking for aspiring or experienced writers, researchers, editors, photographers and video makers to become both occasional and regular content contributors, as well as social media mavens to help with content promotion.
We publish news, features, analysis, comment, briefings, editorial, opinion, neighbourhood spotlights, profiles, interviews, reports, previews and reviews, factchecks and photo galleries.
We want to ensure talent has access to our platform regardless of privilege, so we are keen to welcome contributions from under-represented groups of all kinds.
And if you possess insights into regional policy-making or delivery and would like to offer your perspective as an ad hoc editorial consultant, please drop us a line. Chatham House rules apply unless you want to go on the record or write a story yourself.
Suggest a story
Exeter Observer is also seeking compelling stories about issues affecting the public interest in Exeter and beyond.
Suitable stories might be about established issues, major decisions, the publication of data or reports, or community concerns. Our coverage will range across sectors while examining cross-cutting topics such as climate change and the democratic deficit.
Good story ideas will present something new or show people something in a way they might not have thought of before. Accompanying graphics, maps, photos or video are invaluable, and any relevant supporting documents are always welcome.
Whether its new development on your doorstep, a council policy that’s making life difficult or an issue in your community that needs airing we’d like to hear about it. Likewise if you know about people proposing real-world solutions to the challenges Exeter faces.
If you would like to suggest a story you think we should be covering, or to share relevant information or resources, please get in touch via one of our communications channels. We are always happy to hear from whistleblowers and will protect your identity if you want to remain anonymous.
Help fund us
Exeter Observer’s capacity to scrutinise, investigate and report depends on your support.
Public interest journalism relies on having sufficient resources to effectively interrogate information, arguments and the people who put them forward.
Every contribution, large or small, sustains our research and writing about the issues that matter in and around Exeter.
Your support also helps ensure our editorial and operational independence so our journalism stays free for everyone’s benefit.
One disruptive startup Exeter can’t do without
Exeter is positioning itself as a global leader in sustainable living, but many obstacles to becoming a world-class environmental exemplar remain. If reality is to match rhetoric, significant local challenges must be met.
Attempts to deal with such problems are hampered by the way public policy is determined and delivered. Meanwhile other powerful yet unaccountable organisations and actors also significantly influence decision-making which affects us all.
Good quality local news coverage can help address these issues by providing accurate, relevant, timely information about who is deciding what on whose behalf and how the bill for these decisions will be paid.
However, the capacity of the press to perform these essential public interest tasks has been eroded and the editorial independence of existing local media is at risk.
Exeter Observer is part of an agile, innovative local news sector that has emerged in response to these systemic challenges to deliver independent community journalism with public interest at its heart.
An antidote to existing local media models
Exeter Observer is editorially and financially independent, which means we produce and distribute our content without political or commercial bias.
We aim to deliver investigative journalism and in-depth articles rooted in community interest with real relevance and impact while informing and empowering our readers.
We observe industry best-practice principles, are fully regulated, and are enabled by ordinary people who share our mission to strengthen civil society and help people participate more effectively in local democracy.
News ⁄ Transport & mobility
Devon County Council cites "pushback" from traders as schemes on North Street, South Street, Fore Street and Cowick Street are scrapped. Meanwhile temporary changes in Topsham are dropped after "snap poll".
Analysis ⁄ Climate & environment
Exeter City Futures' carbon reduction plan ignores over a million tonnes of carbon emissions and massively underestimates the challenges facing the city. First in a series examining its flaws by Fridays For Future youth climate activists.
Analysis ⁄ Democracy & governance
Exeter City Council has convened an unelected board that meets in private, does not publish its discussions or decisions and is taking responsibility for major policies which will determine Exeter's future.
Analysis ⁄ Community & society
Exeter City Council has yet to confirm whether it will use any of the £2.15m Rough Sleeping Initiative funding it has received since 2018 to keep housing rough sleepers when government emergency accommodation funding runs out.
News ⁄ Climate & environment
Chief Executive warns that resourcing the plan is "problematic" given COVID-19 financial challenges and that lack of resources limits the council's capacity for immediate practical action.