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.

WATCH: CBS THIS MORNING features Penny Abernathy

By Beth Hatcher

CBS This Morning featured UNC Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics Penny Abernathy in a segment focused on Wyoming’s Casper Star-Tribune, which has cut the number of days it prints the newspaper from seven to five weekly, making…

Supporting digital startups

By Beth Hatcher

As legacy news models continue to struggle, digital startups appear promising. However, while barriers to publication are few — no printing press or delivery trucks needed —digital startups face challenges as they build brands from scratch. This Medill Local News…

Assessing the news deserts landscape and looking forward: UNC CISLM Director Susan Leath shares latest research from Knight Chair Penny Abernathy

By Editor

Susan Leath is the director of the Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media at UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media. Today the UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media’s Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media…

Editor & Publisher features ‘Project Oasis’

By Beth Hatcher

This Editor & Publisher piece details Project Oasis, a partnership between the UNC Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media, Google News Initiative and LION Publishers created to identify, share and implement the best practices that help local digital…

An open letter from the Knight Chairs in Journalism

By Editor

In recent weeks, the latest killings of African-Americans by law enforcement have not only anguished our country but locked its attention on police brutality directed at communities of color. As Americans have tried to come to terms with our history…

WATCH: Strategic Digital Media Entrepreneur

By Editor

  Revolutionary new technologies are compelling news organizations to recreate their business models or be left in history’s wake. New business models are beginning to emerge as leaders explore ways to tap into the potential unleashed by this interactive, always-on…

COVID-19’s continuing effect on local news

By Beth Hatcher

COVID-19 has shuttered more than 30 local newsrooms across America, says Kristen Hare in this article for Poynter. The pandemic’s far-reaching economic effects continue to exacerbate pre-existing industry conditions creating not only closures but mergers, and the newspapers disappearing —…

Los Angeles Times editorial looks at strategies to save local newspapers

By Beth Hatcher

This Los Angeles Times editorial looks at key causes of declining newspaper numbers across the nation: including changing reader habits; the migration of classified advertising to Craigslist and other internet services; the dominance Google and Facebook built over online advertising; and the slowness of legacy…

Digital technologies and the future of journalism

By Editor

We are at the beginning of another revolutionary era in communication. Digital products like streaming videos and e-books seemed like remote possibilities in the 1990s, but consumer habits have shifted dramatically as technology advanced. While successful entrepreneurs can’t always predict…

Penny Abernathy speaks at launch of UNC library local news exhibit

By Beth Hatcher

A new exhibit celebrating two centuries of North Carolina’s local news publications kicked off at the UNC Wilson Special Projects Library Feb. 27 with a talk by Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics Penny Abernathy, who shared her…

Loss of local news compounds problems of struggling local governments

By Beth Hatcher

In a piece for The Atlantic, Ted C. Fishman examines the COVID-19 pandemic’s devastating economic effects on state and local governments, the threat to democracy and how a loss of local news compounds the problem. “The loss of essential services…

Should journalism be part of general education?

By Beth Hatcher

Should journalism basics be part of general education? Poynter is examining the public’s increasing role in news coverage as traditional media numbers decline and smartphone technology becomes more ubiquitous. “The increasing power of cellphones coincided with the decreasing presence of…