Duke Nonprofit Media Conference

A small group of leaders from nonprofit and commercial media, foundations and academia gathered May 4-5, 2009 at Duke University’s Sanford Institute of Public Policy for a series of working sessions to explore new models for nonprofit ownership of media. The conference moved beyond current calls for increased nonprofit media support to the next stage: examining barriers to greater nonprofit and foundation ownership of media outlets, as well as barriers to nonprofit-sector subsidies for the creation of information.

“We realize that greater nonprofit involvement in the media will be only one of the many avenues explored in the search for additional revenue to support reporting,” said James T. Hamilton, director of the DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy. “This conference focused on the particular legal, economic and journalistic hurdles that may arise as nonprofits and foundations become more engaged with producing or supporting journalism.”

The conference and workshops were sponsored by the DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy, the Duke Center for Strategic Philanthropy, and the Duke Center for the Study of Philanthropy and Voluntarism, three research centers at the Sanford Institute.

Conference Report

The conference report, which summarizes the working group discussions and contains the six background papers prepared for the sessions, can be found here: The Road Ahead for Media Hybrids: Report of the Duke Nonprofit Media Conference.

The background papers are also available separately:

Bad Public Relations or Is This a Real Crisis? YES by Lauren Rich Fine

Financing the American Newspaper in the Twenty-first Century by Richard Schmalbeck

A Nonprofit Model for The New York Times? by Penelope Muse Abernathy

Subsidizing the Watchdog: What Would it Cost to Support Investigative Journalism at a Large Metropolitan Daily Newspaper? by James T. Hamilton

The First Draft: Emerging Models of Regional and State Non-Profit Investigative Journalism Centers by Brant Houston

A Donor Collaborative to Support Not-for-Profit Public Affairs Journalism by Joel Kramer and Jon Sawyer

Conference Reactions

The New Yorker: A Nonprofit Times?

(Raleigh, N.C.) News and Observer: Papers Look for Patrons

Andrew Haeg’s Blog: The Future of Journalism: Shoots and Ashes

Related Links about Nonprofit Media

2008 Breaux Symposium Report: New Models for News

United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet hearing, May 6, 2009: The Future of Journalism

New America Foundation Meeting, May 13, 2009: Who Pays for the News? Media Business Models and the Role of Philanthropy

Free Press Summit Report and Conference Transcripts, May 14, 2009: Changing Media: Public Interest Policies for the Digital Age

Blog: The Nonprofit Road: News, Research and Insight into Journalism’s Emerging Business Model

Nonprofit Media Conference