about  /   archives  /   contact  /   subscribe  /   twitter    
Share this entry
Make this entry better

What are we missing? Is there a key link we skipped, or a part of the story we got wrong?

Let us know — we’re counting on you to help Encyclo get better.

Put Encyclo on your site
Embed this Encyclo entry in your blog or webpage by copying this code into your HTML:

Key links:
Primary website:
knightfoundation.org
Primary Twitter:
@knightfdn

Editor’s Note: Encyclo has not been regularly updated since August 2014, so information posted here is likely to be out of date and may be no longer accurate. It’s best used as a snapshot of the media landscape at that point in time.

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation is a national foundation that funds a variety of causes, including journalism projects and organizations.

The foundation was founded in 1950 by the Knight brothers, who owned the Ohio-based Knight Newspapers, which later became Knight Ridder.

Since 1950, the foundation has invested nearly $400 million in journalism through midcareer training programs, endowed journalism chairs at universities, newsroom diversity projects, high school journalism training, the International Center for Journalists, the Knight Citizen News Network, the Knight Digital Media Center, and many other initiatives.

In recent years, Knight has increased its funding interest in journalism innovation, most notably through the Knight News Challenge, but also through other efforts. In early 2011, Knight launched a four-year, $4.2 million “test kitchen” at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, for instance, and partnered with the nonprofit Mozilla Foundation to embed technology fellows in newsrooms, a partnership that was renewed in 2013. Knight regularly gives grants to new journalism projects and news organizations and in 2011 began investing in news projects with the Knight Enterprise Fund. It also launched a smaller, quicker way of funding news projects in 2012 with the Knight Prototype Fund. However, it generally does not provide ongoing funding for individual outlets.

The Knight Foundation also gives grants to more established organizations, such as grants in 2013 of $985,000 to TED to measure the impact of innovative ideas and $3.1 million to New York University to provide community technology training.

(The Knight Foundation provides funding to the Nieman Foundation and the Nieman Journalism Lab, including for the creation of Encyclo.)

Knight News Challenge

The foundation runs the Knight News Challenge, a five-year annual contest that awards startup grants to innovative news projects around the world. The challenge gave its first awards in 2007 and its fifth round in June 2011. After its initial five-year run ended, the foundation announced that the News Challenge would be continued with three annual contests starting in 2012. The first of those contests focused on networks and resulted in six awards, and the second contest focused on data.

Through 2010, the challenge has funded 50 projects for $23 million. Past winners include EveryBlock, Spot.Us, Ushahidi, DocumentCloud, Chi-Town Daily News, Gotham Gazette, Global Voices, and Spot.Us.

The foundation and News Challenge’s primary purpose is to fuel innovation in journalism, and they have done so by broadening their focus to include the broader information needs of communities as well. The News Challenge also represented a shift toward a more open and participatory process for the foundation. The foundation requires each winning News Challenge project to release its code as an open-source resource for other organizations.

A video on the Knight Foundation’s mission:

Peers, allies, & competitors:
Recent Nieman Lab coverage:
April 9, 2018 / Shan Wang
Facebook and Twitter are opening up a bit to academic researchers, so platforms “can make better decisions” — At least a few platforms are lifting the curtain a little bit. Facebook announced on Monday, ahead of CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s appearance before Congress on Wednesday, that it plans to give a limited group of soon-to-...
Feb. 16, 2018 / Christine Schmidt
What strategies work best for increasing trust in local newsrooms? Trusting News has some ideas — After six months of investigating thousands of disciplinary cases in dozens of police departments around Cincinnati, Scripps TV station WCPO was almost ready to share its findings on air and online. But the team decided ...
Feb. 14, 2018 / Ricardo Bilton
Connecting reporters with experts, Sciline wants to improve the quality of today’s science reporting — If you believe the experts, regularly eating dark chocolate can help lower your blood pressure, make you smarter, and help you lose weight. Also, say the experts: Chocolate can contribute to obesity and diabetes and caus...
Feb. 8, 2018 / Christine Schmidt
Local TV news gets a $2.6 million boost from the Knight Foundation — In the “future of news” conversations, television news — especially local — can sometimes be overlooked. But it’s still a vital source of journalism for communities across the United States. The Kni...
Jan. 23, 2018 / Ricardo Bilton
A new $650K grant will help pay for newsrooms to adopt tools like Hearken and GroundSource — For news organizations, the extended period of self-reflection after the 2016 election produced a handful of resolutions. One big one: the need to get better at listening to and engaging with audiences, not just producin...

Recently around the web, from Mediagazer:

Primary author: Mark Coddington. Main text last updated: October 17, 2013.
Make this entry better
How could this entry improve? What's missing, unclear, or wrong?
Name (optional)
Email (optional)
Explore: MinnPost
MinnPost logo

MinnPost is a nonprofit news site based in Minneapolis, Minn. The site was launched in 2007 by Joel Kramer, a former editor and publisher at the Minneapolis Star Tribune, to reach civic leaders and those interested in public policy. Its initial $1.1 million in funding was provided predominantly by local donors (including Kramer himself), along…

Put Encyclo on your site
Embed this Encyclo entry in your blog or webpage by copying this code into your HTML:

Encyclo is made possible by a grant from the Knight Foundation.
The Nieman Journalism Lab is a collaborative attempt to figure out how quality journalism can survive and thrive in the Internet age.
Some rights reserved. Copyright information »