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Andrew Sherry

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    Carol Coletta speaks at the National Immigrant Integration Conference via YouTube Cities should compete to attract and retain immigrants, because nothing does more for a community’s economic future than talent, Knight Foundation Vice President Carol Coletta said Monday. Coletta, who heads Knight’s Community and National Initiatives program, was speaking during a session on “Welcoming Cities” at the National Immigrant Integration Conference being held through Tuesday at the Hilton Miami Downtown. Being welcoming is not just an attitude, it’s an economic imperative, she said. The percentage of college graduates in a city explains 58 percent of the city’s success, as measured in per-capita income, she said. Cities are in a global competition to attract and retain them, she added.  “If you don’t have a talent strategy, you don’t have an economic strategy,” said Coletta, a nationally recognized expert on cities. “Immigrants,” who make up significant percentages of the country’s entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers and math graduates, “are a key part of the talent strategy,” she said. As Coletta dove deeper into strategies to attract and retain talent, a more complex picture emerged, one that held notes of encouragement for those struggling economically. She cited research that showed that kids raised by poor families in economically mixed neighborhoods have a much better chance of becoming better off than their parents than those raised in universally poor, income-segregated neighborhoods.  
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    Above: Norm Pearlstine at the "Media Minds" breakfast on Nov. 14, 2013. Photo credit: Gabe Palacio Photography. Look inside the mind of Time Inc. Chief Content Officer Norm Pearlstine and you’ll see excitement over the future of Time and deep concern, on a personal level, about the future of local news. That’s what emerged as Alex Jones, director of Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, interviewed Pearlstine at the second “Media Minds” breakfast sponsored by Knight Foundation in New York. The event brought together more than 120 high-level media industry executives and Knight grantees from the greater New York area. Pearlstine downplayed questions about editorial integrity that have been swirling since the Oct. 31 announcement that he was returning to Time Inc. from Bloomberg as chief content officer, reporting to a CEO who is tasked with taking the newly spun-off company public next year. Previously, he headed Time as editor-in-chief. Editorial integrity is burned into the brand on all levels, Pearlstine said, and editorial and business divisions need to work together to take the brand into new areas beyond magazines. He added that he had long believed that circulation/marketing functions should be part of editorial, since editors should be measured in large part on the reach of their work.  
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    Above, AOL’s CEO of Brand Group, Susan Lyne, and company CEO Tim Armstrong AOL is deliberately steering away from the engineer-driven, male-dominated Internet culture spawned by Silicon Valley and focusing on creating the Internet programming that people really want, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong told media industry leaders at a Knight Foundation-sponsored event Thursday in New York. Armstrong, sharing a stage with top deputy Susan Lyne at the Media Minds breakfast, added that with women increasingly becoming the dominant users of online content and commerce sites, AOL's mostly female top management team represents a competitive advantage, “because they bring an understanding of the half of the world that our competitors lack.” "People want quality content from trusted sources," rather than spending their time hunting for it in the wilds of the web, Armstrong said, explaining why he believed this strategy had broad general appeal. Lyne evoked the model of television, where franchises were built on programming, to argue that quality content brands represent the future. Since splitting with Time Warner more than three years ago, AOL has acquired TechCrunch, Engadget, The Huffington Post and others, which combined attract 200 million monthly visitors, 100 million of those in the United States, Armstrong said.
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    Above: Talia Leman, CEO and Founder of RandomKid, addresses the 2013 Ashoka Future Forum. When you bring a few hundred social entrepreneurs together to talk about the future of news, you can be sure you are going to hear a lot about using media for social good. That’s exactly what happened last week at the Ashoka Future Forum at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., a venue that underscored how much journalism and social entrepreneurship are starting to collide. The conference examined a range of other topics revolving around Ashoka’s core belief that everyone can effect positive change and that people can address some of society’s biggest problems by transforming systems and platforms. The future of cities was a major discussion track, as urban design is both about changing systems and empowering the people who live within them. At one of the media sessions, New York Times columnist David Bornstein argued that good journalism should deliver solutions not just describe problems. He compared today’s daily litany of crimes and bridge collapses to parents who tell their children only what’s wrong every day and expect them to be good. He made not only a moral but a business argument for journalism that advocates solutions –  in this way its impact can be measured in terms of whether the solutions are implemented and it’s much easier to raise financial support for activities that can demonstrate positive impact. June Cohen of TED weighed in with a description of how TED.com was being built out into an action platform. The idea is to help people who are inspired by TED talks take action based on them and for TED to be able to measure the impact. An early step was to crowdsource translations of TED talks through the Amara platform; both TED.com and Amara are supported by Knight Foundation.
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      NewME Accelerator, a nationally acclaimed program to jump-start tech businesses, is coming to Miami. NewME will run its first ever Popup, an intensive three-night version of its Silicon Valley program, in Miami on Nov. 12-14, with sponsorship from Knight Foundation. Miami entrepreneurs will get critical advice from leading venture capitalists, participate in hands-on classes, and prepare for a Demo Night competition. All participating entrepreneurs will benefit, but one startup will be selected for the critically acclaimed, 12-week NewME Accelerator program, along with services valued at $25,000. All applicants are welcome, but advance registration is required and places are limited. NewME's Silicon Valley program has gained critical acclaim for helping women and others who are minorities in tech. Leading Silicon Valley VCs Scott Kupor, COO of Andreessen Horowitz and Erik Moore, managing director of Base Ventures, will attend as coaches and judges. Moore was a seed investor in Zappos.com, which was sold to Amazon for $1.2 billion. Others attending include Angela Benton, founder and CEO of NewME Accelerator. Knight Foundation, which promotes informed and engaged communities, is supporting efforts to jump start Miami's start-up culture and ensure that it is connected to the broader community.