This report provides an examination of the current state of the field of media impact assessment, which Media Impact Funders (MIF) has been tracking for seven years. It also draws on insights from a few leading experts engaged in media impact assessment.
This report is designed to give funders a succinct and accessible introduction to the practice of funding investigative journalism around the world, via major contemporary debates, trends and challenges in the field. It is part of a series from DW Akademie looking at practices, challenges and futures of investigative journalism around the world.The paper is intended as a stepping stone, or a springboard, for those who know little about investigative journalism, but who would like to know more. It is not a defense, a mapping or a history of the field, either globally or regionally; nor is it a description of or guide to how to conduct investigations or an examination of investigative techniques. These are widely available in other areas and (to some extent) in other languages already.Rooted in 17 in-depth expert interviews and wide-ranging desk research, this report sets out big-picture challenges and opportunities facing the investigative journalism field both in general, and in specific regions of the world. It provides donors with an overview of the main ways this often precarious field is financed in newsrooms and units large and small. Finally it provides high-level practical advice – from experienced donors and the investigative journalism field – to help new, prospective or curious donors to the field to find out how to get started, and what is important to do, and not to do.
Five Things You Need to Know
- 1.The work foundations care about is at risk
- 2.Journalism must forge new connections
- 3.Sustainable business models are crucial
- 4.Trust in journalism is under threat
- 5.Editorial independence and transparency matterFive Ways to Get Started
- 1.Identify grantmaking and investment strategies
- 2.Support innovations in reporting
- 3.Reinforce partnerships that expand the business models and engagement
- 4.Invest in community data
- 5.Learn more about media grantmaking
This booklet is a starter guide for foundations interested in exploring how to make impactful journalism and community-information grants. It shares the experiences of dozens of foundations that have recently funded news and information projects. It also introduces the work of peer foundations that support journalism. (Hummanitarian Journalism)
Despite stating that this ‘is not designed to be a comprehensive manual setting out best practices on grant making in the media space’, this report offers an extremely clear and practical overview of the ways in which foundations can support journalism responsibly. It includes sections on the rationale for funding journalism, advice from experienced donors and specific areas of opportunity and threat. (Hummanitarian Journalism)
This guide shows only a small sampling of how funders and publishers are working together to financially sustain the fourth estate, they hope that it nonetheless serves as a starting point for your own work by providing solid examples of groundbreaking funding efforts—ones that are both pioneering and effective. If you’re a grantee, you may also want to use this document to think about how your work might appeal to potential funders.
In 2017, API produced two sets of broad guidelines of best practices, one for funders and another for nonprofit newsrooms, based on consultations with funders, nonprofit media executives and researchers. The focus of these often-cited guidelines is primarily on establishing best practices for ensuring editorial independence. (Hummanitarian Journalism)
The new world of donor funding of media content addresses a serious need for in-depth coverage of subjects that affect society. At a time when media faces financial pressures in many parts of the world, donors have stepped in to create a public good, and grantees are grateful. However, as mentioned, we found that grantees and donors alike feel it may be time to come up with some codes of conduct aimed at promoting transparency and safeguarding newsroom independence.