CISLM will grow a more equitable and sustainable future for local news, the journalists who make it and the communities that need it. Through the intersection of research, education and practice, we will redefine sustainability to mean more than revenue. We will cultivate, feed and support the human resources who will reinvent journalism.

Reinventing Local News

Featured Project

Local News Audience Assistant

Introducing the CISLM Local News Audience Assistant, our customGPT that compiles case studies, best practices, Q&As, tip sheets, audio and video recordings and more around audience development from journalism support organizations.

Q&A with local news ecosystem researcher, Courtney Tabor

By Serena Sherwood | Apr 30, 2024
Posted in

“We’ve done a lot of counting the numbers of local news systems, which unfortunately is almost obsolete as soon as it’s published, but it would be great to know more about the characteristics of our news.”

‘Opportunity to make a lasting impact:’ UNC grad provides higher ed coverage to WUNC, Open Campus

By Serena Sherwood | Apr 18, 2024
Posted in

Thanks to a new partnership between WUNC and Open Campus, a nonprofit news organization focused on helping increase local reporting on higher education, higher ed reporting in NC has more resources.

A group of West Wing High School student staff posing for a group photo. They are standing and sitting in multiple rows on and in front of bleachers, smiling or making playful gestures. The students are dressed in casual attire and the background features a clear sky with a portion of a red roofed building.

How high school advisers can help instill good mental health practices in reporting

By Twumasi Duah-Mensah | Apr 16, 2024
Posted in

Young people are among the journalists most affected by burnout. Some local journalists start their careers in high school – what are ways advisers are helping student journalists prioritize mental health?

Logo for the Local News Audience Assistant, featuring a central magnifying glass focusing on an open book. Surrounding icons represent various media types, including a microphone, camera, paper plane, smartphone, video camera, music note, chat bubbles, and more, arranged in a circular pattern on a light blue background, suggesting a diverse array of news and information sources.

Help us break this bot! Or alternatively, Learn a little something about building audiences for your local news outlet

By Erica Perel | Apr 15, 2024
Posted in

How great would it be to build a giant meta-search of resources across the journalism support world, we thought. Introducing: The Local News Audience Assistant custom GPT.

New wins from UNC Table Stakes alumni organizations

The wins keep coming for news organizations that recently completed the UNC-Knight Foundation Table Stakes Initiative.

ANNALs: An Overview of State and Local Legislation to Support Local News

Jessica Mahone, CISLM research director, reported on several challenges associated with the enactment of legislation aimed at supporting local news.

Elmo is the internet’s new therapist. But can he help solve burnout?

Local News Researcher Elizabeth Thompson noted that the 2023 local news burnout report was in response to the observations the CISLM team aspired to quantify after hearing about the topic often from local news journalists.

‘A recipe for burnout’: CISLM’s Elizabeth Thompson on journalism working conditions

The article also emphasizes that changes in the industry, including a landscape of shifting news values and layoffs, could be impacting the experiences of journalists and their burnout.