The News Integrity Initiative (NII) at the Newmark J-School was launched in 2017 to advance media literacy and increase trust in journalism.
Over the next year, the initiative will refocus its work on improving diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) practices in the news business. The goal is to better integrate journalists of color into the media landscape and promote high-quality civic content that resonates with historically marginalized communities.
NII’s three core areas are as follows:
- Understanding and addressing conditions in the workforce that are impeding the progress of journalists of color. For example, NII supported a survey among journalists of color to find out what issues they face in newsrooms and where they need help. The findings provide a practical starting point for management to introduce changes in newsroom policies and guidelines to retain and advance journalists of color. This effort should result in improving coverage of diverse communities.
- Presenting strategies for improving DEI practices in newsrooms in collaboration with the tech sector. NII will convene editors and senior media executives along with academics, technologists, and other thought leaders to create collaborative solutions that will improve the relevance and utility of civic journalism for all communities.
- Giving media entrepreneurs of color greater access to capital. As a start, NII has partnered with Craig Newmark Philanthropies, Democracy Fund, the Ford Foundation, and Google News Initiative to launch the Racial Equity in Journalism Fund. This investment pool, which will target news organizations led by people of color, will be managed by Borealis Philanthropy. We will also explore new opportunities to provide a neutral fund to sustain important work across platforms in collaboration with journalists.
The News Integrity Initiative is a project of the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism Foundation under the auspices of the school’s Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism. NII extends the long-standing work of the Tow-Knight Center in building bridges between platforms and publishers and supporting collaboration in service of the public and journalism. NII received seed funding from Facebook, Craig Newmark Philanthropic Fund, the Ford Foundation, and AppNexus.
For more information, please contact NII Managing Director Jennifer Choi or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The News Integrity Initiative in partnership with Frontline Solutions wrote this report and guide on applying an equity lens in journalism philanthropy after interviewing program officers for their feedback and best practices. Here is the executive summary version, too.