Knight Blog

The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Report offers comprehensive review of international media development

May 7, 2012, 2:31 p.m., Posted by Amy Starlight Lawrence

The Center for International Media Assistance recently released the second edition of its Empowering Independent Media report.

The report is one of the most comprehensive reviews of the media development field, covering developments like digital media and citizen journalism as well as business assessment including funding levels and sustainability issues.

The Center for International Media Assistance recently released the Empowering Independent Media report.

In essence, the report recommends the following on:

·      Funding: expand it, commit to longer-term projects and increase collaboration.

·      Training: embrace digital, teach business, modernize education and include citizen journalists.

·      Policy: support an enabling environment, specifically support investigative journalism, support anti-impunity efforts and build assessment into everything.



The summary of U.S. media development funding is particularly interesting:  U.S. government spending on international media development jumped 56% between 2006 and 2010 to $222 million – which is still just 0.4% of total U.S. foreign assistance.  Media development funding by private U.S. foundations increased 27% in the same period, to a total of $76 million in 2010.  The report provides a detailed analysis of all major donors to media development.

St. Paul community invited to understand factors that accelerate economic and social growth

May 7, 2012, 12:17 p.m., Posted by Polly M. Talen

The Central Corridor Funders Collaborative and its many partners are looking forward to the arrival of Charles Landry in the Twin Cities this week.  Creating 21st Century Intercultural and Creative Cities is taking place all this week (May 6-11) and will include a series of events and activities featuring Landry.  

landryA prolific author, engaging speaker and hands-on consultant, Landry has worked with cities across the globe to provide expertise on building intercultural and creative capacities. He has advised communities on topics such as green urbanism, using imagination and creativity for urban change and tapping into ethnic and cultural diversity for economic development. The creative city concept from his highly acclaimed book, The Art of City Making (2006) along with The Creative City: A Toolkit for urban innovators, has spurred a global movement to rethink the planning, development and management of cities.

The public is invited to understand how art, culture and diversity can accelerate both economic and social growth ­– critical elements in strengthening the Twin Cities as world-class region. Most of the events are free but may require an RSVP.

Detroit’s BME Leadership Award Winners address community issues with Michigan governor

May 7, 2012, 8:22 a.m., Posted by Elizabeth R. Miller

Shaka Senghor, a BME Leadership Award Winner

Detroit's BME Leadership Award winners met recently with Michigan’s Governor Rick Snyder to talk about the most pressing issues facing both the state and the city.

The small, invite-only group discussion, which included the city’s Deputy Mayor Kirk Lewis and other business and civic leaders, focused specifically on how to identify and help solve some of residents’, biggest challenges. BME is an effort to recognize, connect and invest in black males from all walks of life who engage others in making communities stronger.

All 10 BME Leadership Award Winners from Detroit were invited. Those able to attend included Emu Michael KumaneMiguel PopeBrook Ellis and Shaka Senghor. Reflecting on the forum, Senghor, who with support from BME will coach young people on how to fully express life stories across media, says he considered it an honor to participate. Senhor also says that he was impressed there was a good mixture of people from diverse backgrounds who participated in the meeting:

“Going in I didn't know what to expect, so I was very open to exchanging ideas about Detroit's future with those who are working hard to make a difference. Mary Kramer did a good job introducing the topic of how to turn Detroit around. [Gov. Snyder] sounded like he is really committed to seeing a better Detroit although we'll have to wait and see if his actions line up with his words...I took an opportunity to engage him in a brief discussion and told him about the work we are doing in the community and he appeared to be impressed by what I shared.  One of the things I pointed out was the importance of resources being allocated in underserved communities outside of Midtown and Downtown. When Gov. Snyder was finished speaking, each table was asked to identify the things they felt were important when it came to moving Detroit forward.”