Two weeks after the JTMPNW gathering, about twenty participants met to discuss ways to sustain the effort. The individuals shared thoughts about activities they were personally most interested in pursuing.
Subsequently, nine people agreed to form a group of stewards to continue the JTMPNW Collaboratory. The invitation to potential participants said:
‚ÄúThink of this as a catalyzing hub for a loose-knit network of people interested in furthering what emerged at the January conference on behalf of journalism, innovation, and civic engagement in the Northwest. We also see it as an experiment for a national model.‚ÄĚ
The nine people who signed up each made a one-year commitment involving monthly meetings and ongoing follow up work as we invent the Collaboratory. The group also envisions a quarterly collaboratory session to re-connect, share what is happening, and continue generating connections and ideas, as well an ongoing communications effort.
The convening stewards:
- Peggy Holman, co-founder of Journalism That Matters and author of ‚ÄúThe Change Handbook, Bellevue, Washington
- Sanjay Bhatt, president of the Seattle Chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association and reporter for The Seattle Times
- Michael Bradbury, CEO, REALScience, Seattle
- Mike Fancher, retired executive editor of The Seattle Times, Seattle
- Charles Hamilton, president of CHCS Internet Development, Seattle
- John Hamer, director of the Washington News Council, Seattle
- David Messerschmidt, owner of Public Affairs Media Group, Seattle
- Matt Rosenberg, councilor coordinator, Countywide Community Forums of King County, Seattle
- Anne Stadler, independent civic and social organization professional, Lake Forest Park, Washington
The Collaboratory statement of purpose:
The JTMPNW Collaboratory catalyzes experimentation and collaboration to improve the news and information health of communities in the Pacific Northwest.
Our goal is to build capacity by:
- nurturing existing journalistic, new media, and community initiatives by connecting people, ideas and resources;
- identifying unmet needs and unrecognized possibilities;
- convening inquiries and conversations to foster collaborations such as incubators, microfinancing and other forms of funding;
- mapping the news and information ecology and exploring ways to measure its health.
We support best practices in leadership, community gathering, and the common pursuit of truth and the public interest. Through personal and virtual connections, we link the widest diversity of groups and individuals to promote active participation in an open and civil democratic society.
JTMPNW and the Knight Commission Report
In many ways, the creation of the JTMPNW Collaboratory is the embodiment of the Knight Commission’s call for “informed communities.” The Commission said:
America needs ‚Äúinformed communities,‚ÄĚ places where the information ecology meets people‚Äôs personal and civic information needs. This means people have the news and information they need to take advantage of life‚Äôs opportunities for themselves and their families. They need information to participate fully in our system of self-government, to stand up and be heard. Driving this vision are the critical democratic values of openness, inclusion, participation, empowerment, and the common pursuit of truth and the public interest.
The collaboratory will also be a force for promoting the Commission’s Recommendation 1: Direct media policy toward innovation, competition, and support for business models that provide marketplace incentives for quality journalism.