Fellowships available to attend “Beyond Books” — apply by March 15



CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Some 30 partial  fellowships, consisting of registration, travel and lodging stipends for graduate students, were awarded to attend “Beyond Books: News, Literacy, Democracy & America’s Libraries,” an unprecedented collaboration of journalists and librarians set for April 6-8 at the MIT Center for Future Civic Media.

Funding for most of the fellows resulted from an Institute for Museum & Library Services,  with additional support from the American Library Association’s Office for Information Technology Policy and from American Public Media’s Public Insight Network.

The two-day, agenda-setting work session and symposium will consider how journalists and librarians can work together to promote civic engagement and open information access.  It is designed to amplify the voices of between 90 and 130 librarians, teachers, graduate students, journalists, technologists, scholars and citizens in dialog, discussion and work.

The event is immediately before the National Conference for Media Reform, in Boston, April 8-10. (http://conference.freepress.net )

For more information go to:

Find out who’s participating:  http://www.journalismthatmatters.org/biblionews/whos-coming

“Beyond Books”  will inform next steps for designing and implementing a possible national collaborative among, and training for, journalists, libraries and museums on methods for improving open access to public information and civic engagement —  consistent with the recommendations of the 2009-2010 report of the Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities.

The event seeks to identity recruit,  and begin training journalists, technologists and other members of the public to uncover, study and test new methods of access to public information and civic engagement, particularly in common purpose between and among libraries, journalists and local news providers.  It will:

(a)   Outreach to library and information science thought leaders, especially graduate students, for their participation both onsite and through pre- and post-event virtual proceedings and networking.

(b)   Prepare, convene, report and provide post-event assessment and next steps for “Beyond Books: News, Literacy, Democracy and America’s Libraries.”


For three centuries — in American towns large and small — two institutions have uniquely marked a commitment to participatory democracy, learning and open inquiry  — our libraries and our free press.   Today, economic and political realities – or fashions – invite a thoughtful examination of their roles, and the opportunity for collaboration among these two historic community information centers, one largely public, one largely private.

With via a pre-event social network, an evening agenda-setting dialogue, a day of roundtable planning and closing action commitments, we’ll discover what’s possible at the intersection of public spaces, open documents, citizen reporting and journalistic purpose.  Among the questions we may ask:

  • What might libraries do to facilitate community social news networks?
  • Must free speech be absolute within a taxpayer-supported institution?
  • Should librarians be more partisan than reporters? Reporters more partisan than librarians?
  • Are libraries poised to become public-access media centers as cable fades?
  • Should a library operate a news collective, non-profit or citizen-journalism service?
  • How can libraries help preserve a free digital information commons?

For a narrative description of the event purpose and general posting notice see:


Journalism That Matters Collaborative /  c/o Media Giraffe Project /  Journalism Program / University of Massachusetts /  Amherst MA 01003  / 413-458-8001

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2 Responses to Fellowships available to attend “Beyond Books” — apply by March 15

  1. Pingback: BiblioNews: Common purpose for journalists and librarians | Beyond Books

  2. I would love to go and participate in the workshop, but due to the fact that I have little income resources it will not be posible. I consider it to be a great oportunity for us, specially when I am graduating this year and am working with community based non profit services in the informations technology area. My masters degree proyect is related to e-government and an initiative for the training of our citizens on the use of the services provided by the government through the use of technology.

    If you can consider the posibility of including my request for a fellowship to assist I would very much appreciate it. Exito…

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