UNC-Chapel Hill has announced a new research center to develop digital media products for local news sites and to identify new models for community news.
The initiative was made possible with $3 million from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, along with a $1 million match from the university provost’s office.
The effort is aimed at sustaining and innovating traditional news organizations and digital journalism startups. Research will go into creating new digital tools to help reporters and editors.
UNC’s School of Media and Journalism will work with the Knight Foundation to pursue research around the digital transformation of news organizations — and to share findings and resources with industry leaders. The work will include identifying local communities at risk for becoming “news deserts” in a rapidly changing media landscape.