Investment & innovation

Research, reports and articles about investment to support journalism.

This resource page is a work in progress. Please get in touch to let us know what is missing using this form.

Knight Foundation

The main objective of this assessment is to understand the effects of grantees’ interventions in the context of Knight’s goals for sustainability of local news, particularly with respect to audience and revenue growth. We know that the long-term sustainability of local news cannot be divorced from the need for local news organizations to be diverse, equitable and inclusive, with sophisticated organizational practices and representation from the communities they aim to serve. So, we include these aspects of organizational growth and development in the qualitative elements of this assessment, as well.


"The most important current development is that the newsroom is becoming distributed, moving away from traditional physical newsrooms toward a network of independent, hybrid and expert “information workers” and dynamic, multidisciplinary collectives and cooperatives. At the same time, delivery channels are also becoming highly hybrid and distributed. No longer is there a single newspaper through which to reach audiences; now there is a wide array of means, spanning multiple devices and media formats and effortlessly crossing borders. And all this variety is available to a much more heterogeneous and demanding audience."

Public Media Alliance - MERVYN WARNER

"In a rapidly changing global media landscape there is growing uncertainty regarding the sustainability of income and funding levels for Public Service Broadcasters and Public Service Media (referred to collectively here as “PSM”). As a result, many PSM organisations are actively seeking new funding models in an attempt to future proof financial sustainability."

Public Plocy Forum

"Today, we deal with a reality almost unimaginable back in 1970. The far-fetched bubblegum and lollipops notion has come to pass: Every man–and woman–can now literally communicate his or her “opinions and perceptions.” Blogs, social media feeds, podcasts and smartphones give citizens unprecedented voice, and sometimes place them at the scene of breaking news that, in an earlier time, would have gone unreported. To lean in and engage publicly or lean back and consume passively is a choice that now rests with individual citizens, not just media companies."

Global Forum for Media Development

"The consultations found that participants welcome the idea of the policy initiative and believe that GFMD is well-positioned to take this leadership role. A number of participants noted the value of GFMD’s proximity to the media development community (and the community’s knowledge and experience), though many also underscored the importance of ensuring that GFMD does not come under pressure to follow or promote the agenda of particular members."


Funded by: Ford Foundation

This report, produced as part of a Ford Foundation series on Reconstructing American News, offers an analysis and a set of recommendations for how investors can support equitable media, with a focus on:

  1. Supporting experimentation and R&D around revenue models.

  2. Fostering a community of practice around emerging alternative ownership structures.

  3. Building up the business and finance skills of journalists and media entrepreneurs involved in equitable media.

  4. Developing best practices for media investors to invest with an impact lens.

Philanthropy’s Role

Given that not all the support needed for equitable media will come from investors - whether traditional or impact - the report also issues a call for the role of philanthropy in increasing support for equitable media through grants, concessionary investment capital, expertise, and convening power around standard settings and best practices.


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Investment & innovation


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