Knight Foundation: Grants for Journalism

OVERVIEW: As part of its journalism program, this funder provides grants for First Amendment rights in the digital age and the use of technology to advance journalistic excellence.

FUNDING AREAS: Journalism and technology, First Amendment rights

IP TAKE: There aren’t too many huge philanthropic players that make a priority out of journalism. This is one of them. Make sure your idea has a strong technology component.

PROFILE: The Knight Foundation is a huge funder that we have covered extensively at IP. It has four program areas: communities, arts, technology, and journalism. Here are the key things journalism grantseekers should know about applying for Knight funding.

The overall goal of this program is to advance journalistic excellence in the digital age. As you might expect, there’s a strong digital and technological component to Knight’s grantmaking in this arena. But beyond tech, Knight looks to support free expression and high-quality reporting that informs communities so that they may determine their own best interests.

One big area of focus of Knight’s journalism program is First Amendment funding. With a broad interpretation of this basic American right, Knight funds research, training, and litigation related to the right of free expression and public access to information. These grants also go towards protecting the rights of journalists to report news and events.

The other big interest for Knight in this area is journalistic excellence. These grants help news organizations meet increasing demands in the digital age. Today’s version of journalism involves much more than just research and writing. And Knight grants support innovative uses of technology to help journalists tell the stories that impact people.

Knight defines journalism as both reporting and commentary as long as accuracy and a search for the truth are at the heart of the endeavor.

The foundation has endowed chairs of journalism at top universities across the country. There is no single region of focus: they fund nationwide. Past efforts have gone towards digital transformation at local news organizations. Knight is a funder that regularly collaborates with other journalism funders.

You can learn about recently funded projects and Knight's interests on its journalism page. There are four Knight staff members working in the journalism program.

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