Local Media Project

A multiyear initiative — the first phase of which ran from 2019 to 2023 — aimed at strengthening and reinvigorating local media ecosystems.

From left: CJC members Jim Yarbrough (of QNotes), Nate Morabito (WCNC), Lauren Lindstrom (Charlotte Observer), Hilda Gurdian (La Noticia), Seth Ervin (Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library), Glenn Burkins (QCityMetro), and David Boraks (WFAE). They are taking questions from co-moderator and WCNC anchor Fred Shropshire during an event in pre-pandemic times. (Photo courtesy Michael Davis)

The Local Media Project convened 15 news collaboratives in the United States, with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation. Many of these collaboratives continue to exist today. The collaboratives consist of news, community and civic organizations that work together to address a pressing challenge in their respective communities and to develop plans for the ongoing financial sustainability of their shared efforts. Collaboratives practice solutions journalism in covering a wide range of topics, engage with their communities and adopt new technology and practices to elevate their journalism, as well as demonstrating the value of breaking down the walls of competition among news organizations.

After two years of support from SJN, each collaborative developed a sustainability plan, including editorial, business and audience engagement strategies, and moved forward as a permanent news hub to practice journalism using a solutions lens. These collaboratives are members of a network of collaboratives, giving them the opportunity to share knowledge, gain access to best practices and discuss innovative revenue and engagement ideas.

Awards Received By Our Collaboratives

New Jersey Stormwater Matters Collaborative

First Place NJPA weekly awards for Responsible Journalism - Public Service - Lloyd P. Burns Memorial Award

Granite State News Collaborative

2022 Fitzwater Medallion for Public Service

Invisible Walls series was honored by Housing Action NH, a coalition of 80 organizations united around affordable housing policy, during its “Home Matters in NH Awards.”

2022 First Place in Excellence in Newsroom Collaboration for COVID coverage awarded by New England News and Press Association

Climate Solutions Pennsylvania

Received $10,000 from America Amplified for a Climate Solutions focus group

Resolve Philly & Broke in Philly

Winner, 2023 INN Service to Nonprofit News Award

Winner, 2023 Online News Association (ONA) Impact Award

Philadelphia News Awards awarded by the Pen and Pencil Club:

  • 2018 Investigative Work of the Year: Broke in Philly
  • 2018 Associated Press Media Editors Awards for Community Engagement: The Reentry Project
  • 2017 Best Non-Traditional News Provider of the Year: The Reentry Project

Southwest Michigan Journalism Collaborative

Collaborative member Watershed Voice received a LION award in the Public Service category for its solutions journalism story on the PAWS clinic for students in Three Rivers, Michigan.

Collaborative member Now Kalamazoo was honored by the Michigan Press Association for third place in writing and first place in feature story for Finding Peace During War, part of the collaborative's series on mental wellness.

New York & Michigan Collaborative

Second place from the New York Press Association for a solutions journalism package on the caregiver shortage

Great Salt Lake Collaborative

Winner, 2023 ONA Excellence in Collaboration and Partnerships

Winner, Local That Works Contest

Society of Professional Journalists Top of the Rockies awards:

Charlotte Journalism Collaborative

Winner of WCNC’s 2020 Edward R. Murrow Award for News Series with "I Can’t Afford to Live Here"