At Knight Foundation our work carries across program areas, from the arts to journalism and media innovation to community and national initiatives that improve the cities where we all live.
We issued several reports this year, designed to share lessons we have learned while working in a variety of sectors. Here are some of the highlights:
- “Case Studies: How Four Community Information Projects Went From Idea to Impact”: Through the Knight Community Information Challenge, more than 80 foundations have stepped up to invest in everything from local and state reporting to citizen dialogue and digital literacy, all to help their communities thrive. This report examined four community foundations and asked the questions why are they working in media and how does that connect to their overall goals? It includes lessons on design and planning, community engagement and project development.
- “The Emergence of Civic Tech: Investments in a Growing Field”: This report offers a broad look at civic tech, including an overview of investments in the sector and the funders behind them. It also features a data visualization component that tracks investments. The study isn’t static, either. We’ll be expanding it in 2014 and encourage input from others to help refine the data. If you have any feedback, please send your contributions to Jon Sotsky, our director of strategy and assessment, at [email protected].
- “Finding a Foothold: How Nonprofit News Ventures Seek Sustainability”: Our report on nonprofit news examined 18 operations to explore the challenges and the opportunities in the sector. “Finding a Foothold” was a follow-up to a 2011 Knight Foundation study, “Getting Local.” The study explored how some nonprofits are finding different levels of success through events, membership and syndication. You can even explore the data on your own by downloading a PDF or Excel file from our website.
- “Giving Day Playbook”: The playbook is a comprehensive guide for managing a 24-hour online giving campaign. The resource offers advice, checklists, templates and time lines that cover everything from planning a campaign to following up with donors. Here’s also a look back at several of the successful Giving Day campaigns in 2013 and a look ahead to some of the key dates in 2014.
- “O, Miami: How a Festival Infused a City with Poetry” explored the Knight-supported O, Miami poetry festival’s efforts to bring the art form to life by dropping poems from helicopters, sewing them into clothing and more. It not only chronicled the rise of Miami’s art scene, it offered insights for any cultural organization trying to engage new audiences and reframe art for their communities. An interactive map also allowed users to explore poetry experienced in different ZIP codes. (The next O, Miami poetry festival is slated for April.)
- “Why Contests Improve Philanthropy: Six Lessons on Designing Contests for Impact”: Since the first Knight News Challenge in 2007, Knight has expanded its work in open contests, through such programs as the Knight Arts Challenge and the Knight Community Information Challenge. This report offers a synthesis of the intelligence we’ve acquired with that experience and explains how contests can be essential in exposing organizations to grantees who might not apply for traditional funding and to introducing new ideas and innovations to funders.