At the intersection of journalism, community engagement and diversity

I’ve spent this past year focused on a project of Journalism That Matters  (JTM), a nonprofit I co-founded that hosts conversations to foster collaboration, innovation, and action so that a diverse news and information ecosystem can thrive.

My interest grows from a discovery I made a few years ago when looking for grant money for a project. I discovered that less than 10% of foundation funding for new journalism ventures was going to meet the needs of underserved communities. In other words, new media was even more white than traditional media! Seemed like a wakeup call was in order.engagement-CMYK

JTM partnered with the American Society of News Editors, working with three news organizations who are engaging their communities around issues related to diversity and inclusion. Their stories and more are at the Engagement Hub, a site we aspire to become a gathering place for those who see engagement as a means for making diverse voices more visible.

Our partners:

They’ve taken an approach to reporting that begins by listening to their community. For example, to look at affordable housing, they brought together government, nonprofit and people “in the system.” In the process, they not only found stories to tell but made connections to move the dial on this challenging issue.

Starting with a “listening tour” they have sparked conversations and working groups to address entrenched challenges around employment, education, criminal justice, and housing. In the process, they are building community coalitions and optimism.

By training community members in East Oakland to tell untold stories of where their neighborhoods, they are changing the relationship between the news organization and the community. The project is growing,  working in Jackson, Mississippi and Sacramento, California.

 

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Changing Roles in Changing Times

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Thanks to Jesse Lyn Stoner for inviting me to post Change Your Story, Change Your Organization  to the Seapoint Center blog. It elaborates on five roles highlighted in the Berkana Institute’s Two Loops Model of Change.

Some reflections on the implications of these roles for journalists is on the Journalism That Matters site: Stories for Navigating the Waves of Change.

Enjoy!

Two Loop Theory

Adapted from Berkana Institute’s Two Loops Theory of Change

 

 

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Engaging Possibilities: A Video

Enjoy this short video from the workshop that Tova Averbuch, Christine Whitney Sanchez, and I did of our workshop, Engaging Possibilities: The Art & Science of Radical Appreciation, in Israel this summer:

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Journalism That Matters: Now What?

In the sixth post in my journalism series, I explore

The Changing News and Information Ecosystem: What Can You Do?

How can you contribute to a healthy journalism ecosystem?

Emerging-Economy_letter-cropped

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Support the National Dialogue Network

I first learned of the fledging aspirations of the National Dialogue Network (NDN) last year at the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation‘s Seattle Conference.  NDN’s ambitious goal:  to coordinate collaborative local conversations into mindful national dialogue.

After winning NCDD’s Catalyst Award for civic infrastructure, it has gone on to put its ideas into action.

NDN logo

Now, the National Dialogue Network wants you!!  

Their inaugural topic is “Poverty & Wealth in America” and the process couldn’t be easier. You can:

Either way, you’ll help us all learn more about what it takes to create a civic infrastructure that serves the needs of each and all of us.

What the National Dialogue Networks says about themselves:

The NDN coordinates distinct individual and community conversations giving everyone a “sense of place” and voice within the larger national dialogue. NDN’s dedicated volunteer’s seek to revitalize and promote civic infrastructures within communities where all who choose to participate will impact the national conversation by: 

  • Focusing intently on an issue over time with others; 
  • Listening to the opinions and ideas being discussed in your community and across the United States; and 
  • Speaking up about your own opinions and ideas in conversations with your family, friends & community.  
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Journalism That Matters: The Diversity Principle

Post #5 of my series on journalism is now up.

Navigating Through Uncertainty: The Diversity Principle

Innovation demands diversity, using our differences creatively.

Image by Steven Wright, www.wrightmarks.com

Image by Steven Wright, www.wrightmarks.com

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Read the other posts in this series:

 

 

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Journalism That Matters: The Engagement Principle

Post #4 in my journalism series is available:

Journalism for Navigating through Uncertainty: The Engagement Principle

Engagement increases respect, appreciation, and partnership between journalists and communities.

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Journalism That Matters: The Possibility Principle

This next post in my journalism series,

Journalism for Navigating Uncertainty: The Possibility Principle

is getting to the heart of where my work in system change and my work with journalism really overlaps!

Check it out.

From JTM’s Pacific Northwest 2010 Conference Report, by Steven Wright

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Journalism That Matters: Approaching journalism as a system

Here’s the second post in my series on what we need from journalism:

An Expanded Purpose for Journalism

What does a re-vitalized, economically viable journalism that meets the needs of communities and democracies look like? 

Read on…

Toms Story Model sans title

 

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Journalism That Matters: What’s Possible Now?

After years of working with journalists through Journalism That Matters, a nonprofit that I co-founded with three career journalists, I’m finally offering my perspective on what’s possible in the emerging news and information ecosystem.

Check it out:

What do we need from journalism?

Image by Steven Wright, http://wrightmarks.com

Image by Steven Wright, http://wrightmarks.com

 

 

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