Daniel is a Costa Rican journalist and researcher who has devoted the past ten years to developing outlets and communication projects related to tax accountability, climate change, and media literacy. He is currently a Data Insight Lead for the Atlantic Institute, where he helps the Institute to facilitate connections among the hundreds of fellows and to understand the impact they are making in challenging inequalities.
Previously, he worked as an investigative journalist focused on data analysis and economic policies. During 2020 and 2021, he worked as a researcher at the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, helping journalists from Latin America investigate how companies, politicians and powerful figures hide their wealth and assets in tax havens. He was also part of the Panama Papers team and other investigations for Semanario Universidad, and was a researcher and economics reporter for the Costa Rican newspapers La Nación and El Financiero. He has undertaken editorial collaborations with local media (La Voz de Guanacaste) and as a researcher on municipal budgets in underprivileged areas of Costa Rica. He has also taught journalism at the University of Costa Rica.
He is also the co-founder of two news outlets: Ojo al Clima (Climate Observer), which is the only outlet in Central America focused on climate change communication, and Doble Check, Costa Rica’s first fact-checking and informational media literacy communication outlet and the winner of the Pío Víquez National Journalism Award 2019.
When Daniel was completing his undergraduate studies, he worked as a researcher at Ojo al Voto (Vote Tracker), a University of Costa Rica platform that promotes the monitoring of votes by deputies and the establishment of electronic voting in the Costa Rican Congress. He also dedicated almost four years to working as an author in an investigation demonstrating the inequalities in the Costa Rican judiciary. This research, which involved the transcription of more than 5,000 court rulings, showed that people who went to publicly funded lawyers were between 12% and 26% more likely to be convicted than people who could afford to hire a lawyer.
He holds an undergraduate degree in Communications and Journalism from the University of Costa Rica and an MSc in Inequalities and Social Science from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
I believe that we can improve public policies and thereby reduce poverty and inequality with the use of evidence. Economist Esther Duflo said: ‘If we don’t know [if our public policies] are doing any good, we are doing no better than medieval doctors and their leeches’. Like her, I believe that we can do better.
Daniel Salazar Murillo