In the coming month, New America’s MPI team will publish three more case studies of “information communities” across the country. These reports will assess the availability of quality, local-level information and the capacity of individuals to engage with it in three metro areas:
- Minneapolis-St. Paul,
- Washington, D.C.,
- and the Research Triangle of North Carolina (Chapel Hill-Durham-Raleigh).
A healthy democracy relies on access to quality information relevant to individuals’ decisions. Through examinations of three communities, we will assess how they are adapting to meet citizens’ information needs in today’s digital age. To assess this “information health,” we rely on a series of indicators developed in the report of the Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy, Informing Communities: Sustaining Democracy in the Digital Age.
Through extensive research and collaboration with local leaders in the media, government, and nonprofit sectors, the MPI team will deliver analysis of these communities’ local media, civic institutions, digital and media literacy programs, broadband penetration, and more. We have paid particular attention to local blogs, neighborhood-specific media, and ethnic media outlets in order to capture the role of these hyperlocal outlets in informing citizens.
MPI has published two similar case studies on Seattle, WA and Scranton, PA. Additionally, studies of Deerfield, NH and Richmond, CA are currently underway. Please continue to check out mediapolicy.newamerica.net for forthcoming projects!