In cooperation with ZDFheute.de the journalists, Michael Hartlep, Jan Schneider and Dominik Wurnig examine patterns and impacts of lobbyism in Germany.

How do lobbyists operate? Which impacts does their job have? How does lobbyism affect our democracy? And most important: how does the user get all the information?

Along with ZDFheute.de the journalists created a journalistic multimedia online project.

Lobbyradar includes the website www.lobbyradar.de, a database and a browser extension that reveals the various connections of politicians to organizations, marketing agencies and companies. Lobbyradar was inspired by Cahoots. The plugin can be downloaded freely for Chrome, Firefox and Safari.

The database currently includes 19,220 people, 5,386 organizations and 29,806 links between these entities. Users can report connections to help the database grow steadily. The content will be published on different platforms and channels of the ZDF. The project was supported by OpenDataCity and wegewerk.


April 28th, 2015
How to do... LOBBYRADAR
Data journalism and a browser extension

The publication on the project is now available online by clicking on the download icon to the right, or on the title (in German only).

Editorial team

Jan Schneider studied online journalism at the University of Darmstadt. In his diploma thesis he dealt with the meaning of "the Freedom of Information Act within the journalistic practice". After his graduation he came to Berlin and started working for TV. He completed an internship in the production company autoren(werk) and produced TV magazine reports and an extended documentary for ZDF. He was also working for the SWR and produced travel documentaries, among others in Ireland, Tunisia and Tanzania.

Michael Hartlep studied sociology and history in Mannheim, before turning to journalism in Leipzig. This was followed by an internship at Deutsche Welle, for which he now creates television and online contributions. He also works for the Reuters news agency and produces online videos about Bayern Munich, goldfish and Islamic terrorists. If he could choose, Michael would like to do more about digital, scientific sensations and the Netherlands, because those are his favorite subjects. And of course on lobbying. In his free time he likes to explore foreign countries. Michael lives and works as a freelance journalist in Berlin.

Dominik Wurnig is visual journalist from Vienna. Even as a child he wanted to be on television - first as a football commentator. After years at reality TV, he is now working as a data journalist for the late newscast ZIB2 at ORF. He especially draws up maps of faraway places and other colorful diagrams. Inspired by his journalism studies in New York, Dominik is now trying to implement visual storytelling on the web as well.

Project management

Creative management by the media partner ZDFheute.de
Hubert Krech - HR new media

Innovation funding for journalists with project partner
Project duration: 09/2014 - 02/2015