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

NC Diversity Audit

A partnership between CISLM and Elon University’s NC Local News Workshop, the 2022 Diversity Audit for NC Newsrooms is likely the first of its kind in the state.

We're surveying all news outlets regardless of size, location or media platform. The research will be used to guide programming to help newsrooms make progress on diversity, equity and inclusion, and provide benchmarking newsrooms can use.

screenshot of We the People intro slide, featuring We the People text and photos of reporters interviewing folks

How a newspaper in Virginia is centering readers in its reporting

By Lucas Thomae | Sep 27, 2022
Posted in

Journalists at The News Leader in Staunton, Virginia are working with each other and with their UNC Table Stakes coach to engage more readers — not politicians — in the process of watchdog reporting.

I shuttered my own news startup. Here’s what journalism should learn from my experience.

By Sarah Day Owen Wiskirchen | Jul 22, 2022
Posted in

I’m sharing what worked – and what didn’t – in hopes that these lessons are carried forward to a more reflective, equitable future for journalism.

Callan Hazeldine brings invaluable data analysis skills to CISLM team

By Daniel Wei | Jul 20, 2022
Posted in

Hazeldine has joined the CISLM research team, which aims to study the local news ecosystem and provide the journalism industry with data and analysis about news loss and potential solutions for the future.

Daniel Wei explores the intersection of business, journalism

By Callan Hazeldine | Jul 19, 2022
Posted in

With an understanding of both fields, Wei is spending his internship writing case studies of local news organizations that are reinventing the news business model.

LISTEN: Rethinking the business of local news

Featuring UNC-Knight Intiatitve Table Stakes alumni members Glenn Burkins of QCity Metro (cohort four) and Angie Newsome of Carolina Public Press (cohort two), the podcast highlights how the news industry has changed in the past few years.

Through Table Stakes, Knoxville News Sentinel improves coverage of Black communities

Citing the newsroom’s involvement in the UNC-Knight Table Stakes Initiative, Social Justice, Race and Equity Reporter Angela Davis wrote that the Knoxville News Sentinel is making good on its commitment to improving its coverage of Black communities.

How N.C. A&T students changed the way Greensboro newspapers make headlines

North Carolina A&T State University students researched local news reporting in Greensboro and discovered that media outlets often used the institution as a locator for crime in its surrounding region.

NC family with local news legacy wins Tom and Pat Gish Award

The award is an honor given to leaders with significant accomplishments in independent news — and was spurred based on former Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media Director Penny Muse Abernathy’s recommendation of The News Reporter.