On 16 September this year, the Brumby State Government tabled more than 200 annual reports of departments and statutory authorities in just one day.
When these reports were made public about five or six were scrutinised and formed the subject of news reports in mainstream media, meaning over 190 received no attention at all.
The news agenda moved on. This at a time when the spotlight should be shining brightly on Victorian state politics as it shapes up for an election on November 27.
So the Swinburne University of Technology journalism course and Crikey decided to team up to comb through every single report in an exercise in identifying what the media missed. A team of Swinburne students over the last month have scrutinising the reports to capture a snapshot of Victoria in the lead-up to the state election.
Crikey will publish stories researched and written by Swinburne students about contamination, crime, conflict and incompetence, under resourced welfare agencies and regional hospitals in unsustainable financial positions. There are examples of policy bungles, strained relations and under-performance. There are revelations about the finances of some of our biggest institutions and we see emerging trends across entire sectors that deserve greater exposure and discussion.