How to develop a verification mindset

March 1, 2021

Before introducing tools or methodologies, it is important to first understand verification as a mindset.

A verification mindset is about learning to “look for the moonwalking bear” and to see the whole picture when analysing a piece of content -- not just what is in the foreground or what is directly linked to your research question.

The verification mindset is about determining which questions need to be asked to establish the veracity of a piece of content and seeking out the details that help you determine an accurate answer.

You have to consider the use of certain sources and tools and weigh them against each other to make decisions.

However, it is crucial also to remember that open source investigation is not done in a vacuum. Here are some questions you need to ask yourself:

1. Team: what other expert knowledge do you have access to?
2. Contacts: who can you speak to locally about what took place?
3. Local human rights defenders: are there local activist groups that can assist in establishing the facts?

Interested to learn more, sign up for Amnesty International’s free 2-part course on Advocacy Assembly.