OVERVIEW: As part of its journalism program, the Knight Foundation awards grants for First Amendment rights in the digital age and the use of technology to advance journalistic excellence.
IP TAKE: Knight is one of the few major funders that prioritize journalism. Grant seekers’ proposals should feature a strong technology component.
PROFILE: The Knight Foundation was founded by John and James Knight, who were once print media moguls, owning newspapers in 26 cities across the United States. It seeks “to foster informed and engaged communities,” which it believes “are essential for a healthy democracy.” The foundation focuses its grantmaking in and around those 26 cities, but not exclusively. It has several program areas: communities, arts, and journalism.
The Journalism program seeks to advance journalistic excellence in the digital age. As one might expect, there is a strong digital and technological component to Knight’s grantmaking in this area. But beyond technology, Knight supports free expression and high-quality reporting that keeps communities informed.
Another of Journalism Program’s priorities 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 support the rights of journalists to report news and events.
The foundation also funds endowed chairs of journalism at top universities across the country.
Submit letters of inquiry online and describe the project in about two pages. The Foundation reviews inquiries and notifies grantees of its decision via email. If it likes what it reads, a Foundation representative requests a full proposal. There are no exact deadlines for LOIs, however, grant seekers are required to submit a full proposal within four weeks of submitting an idea.
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