News and Posts

The Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media is proud to host original article series, reports from faculty and researchers, and events promoting collaboration among researchers, journalists and universities. Browse our library of articles, videos, interviews, announcements, upcoming events and more.

Ryan Thornburg on using open data to build tools for community journalism

By Madeline Brown

An industry changing as quickly as the journalism and media industry must develop new ways of doing business in order to survive. Open data may be a very significant piece of that puzzle. Ryan Thornburg, director of the Reese Innovation…

How does newspaper ownership affect coverage of hurricanes?

By Madeline Brown

  Recent hurricanes in Texas, Florida and Mexico have made this year the worst since 2005 in terms of number of storms and storm strength. In parts of eastern North Carolina, residents are sympathetic to those affected by Hurricanes Harvey…

Media Innovation Fellows use data and technology to improve local media

By Madeline Brown

Over the summer, five recent UNC-Chapel Hill School of Media and Journalism graduates led projects at local media companies in North Carolina to help them embrace new technologies and respond to changing consumer needs. The Reese Innovation Lab, managed by…

New Video: Symposium on Thwarting the Emergence of News Deserts

By Madeline Brown

Earlier this year, the Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media hosted a symposium entitled “Thwarting the Emergence of News Deserts” at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. The program for the symposium centered around Penelope Muse Abernathy’s groundbreaking report, The Rise of a…

Announcing first Reese Innovation Lab Fellow, Melody Kramer

By Madeline Brown

The UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media and Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media welcome Melody Kramer to the Carolina Data Desk team. She is the first Reese Innovation Lab  Fellow helping local media outlets embrace and…

Article (The Washington Post): What happens to local news when there is no local media to cover it?

By Madeline Brown

The Washington Post’s Paul Farhi published a story investigating East Palo Alto and the hole leftover by a disappearance of local newsrooms, or a “news desert.” When newsrooms shutter, how does a community know about itself and what happens to…

Podcast: What is the future of the Hampshire Gazette?

By Editor

Penelope Muse Abernathy spoke with Oliver Broudy on his podcast Let’s Be Reasonable about the reasons behind the downsizing of community newspapers, and in this case, the Hampshire Gazette. While journalism has received a boost in popularity and support since…

Seth Lewis: Actors, actants, audiences and activities in news gathering

By Erinn Whitaker

One of a regular series of articles that highlights research in the academy and the profession on the emerging threat of news deserts or changes in media ownership. Who and what shapes the news stories that are ultimately published or…

Article (Poynter): In North Carolina, these 2 women are bringing journalists closer to the public

By Editor

Melody Kramer (update: now a Reese News Lab Fellow!) wrote for Poynter about News Voices: North Carolina, a new initiative supported by The Democracy Fund with the goal of stronger collaboration and trust between journalists and the communities they cover. She…

Spotlight on research: How Facebook reshapes journalism

By Erinn Whitaker

How are social media platforms and technology companies changing the future of journalism? Companies like Facebook, Google and Twitter, which started out as distribution channels, are now edging out news organizations in producing fast and shareable content. This trend raises…

UNC-Knight Foundation Table Stakes Newsroom Initiative aims to strengthen local media in the face of disruption

By Craig Anderson

  Eight news organizations in North Carolina — including digital startups, radio stations, TV stations and newspapers — have been selected to participate in a program launched by the Knight-Lenfest Newsroom Initiative in partnership with the UNC Center for Innovation & Sustainability…