The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

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    Media Innovation

    Reviewers for Knight News Challenge on Libraries meet in Miami

    May 5, 2016, 10:58 a.m., Posted by Nina Zenni

    Above: Knight News Challenge reviewers meet in Miami. Photo by Rosemary D'Amour.

    Today, the second group of reviewers are meeting in Miami to discuss semifinalists in the Knight News Challenge on Libraries. A combination of library professionals, journalists, researchers and technology experts, these 17 reviewers will help Knight Foundation select a group of finalists.

    This year’s Knight News Challenge offers a share of $3 million to projects that answer the question, How might libraries meet 21st century information needs? The challenge closed on March 21 with more than 600 applications, and we announced 47 semifinalists on April 15.

    We will notify each semifinalist on May 10 whether they have been selected as a finalist. In the following weeks, we will conduct due diligence and in-person interviews with finalists to determine a group of winners.

    We will announce winners on June 21. On Saturday, June 25, each team will present their projects at the American Libraries Association Annual Conference in Orlando. 

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    Survey: Most arts orgs don’t have a communications plan

    May 5, 2016, 6:39 a.m., Posted by Kris LeCorgne

    Above: Communication by Andre Vandal on Flickr.

    Kris LeCorgne

    How organizations communicate and exchange information – and their internal capacity to do so – will always be challenges for businesses. Entire fields of study are dedicated to these subjects and they continue to be central focuses for many business leaders seeking to increase productivity in the American workforce.

    In the world of non-profits, these subjects are even larger points of pain. Non-profits tend to run leaner organizations dedicated to their specific charitable activities. In the arts, this is further hyperbolized as “organizations” can be more loosely structured collectives without formal management or communications procedures. Above all, these groups just want to do “art.”

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  • Arts

    Five years of Play On, Philly! and a celebration of music education with virtuoso Ray Chen

    May 4, 2016, 5:06 p.m., Posted by Chip Schwartz

    Violinist Ray Chen. Photo by Sophie Zhai.

    Play On, Philly! is in the midst of a pretty exciting milestone this year: 2016 represents the five-year anniversary of the group. Play On, Philly!, or POP as it is known, implements educational programs that teach intensive music lessons to children in underserved Philadelphia schools. With support from Knight Foundation, they have been able to spread the power of learning and the joy of music far and wide amongst Philadelphia students and their families.

    To mark the organization's fifth anniversary, some Curtis Institute of Music graduates have come back to spread the word about music education in Philly. Most notably, award-winning violinist Ray Chen has launched a campaign called Musical Heroes in order to celebrate the people and programs who bring the gift of music education to youth, with specific attention paid to former Curtis alumnus and founder Stanford Thompson. Chen has released a video, along with a Generosity campaign, in order to raise funds for POP–and also just to spread the good word about POP students and the difference music is making in their lives.

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