News Quality

A well-informed citizenry is essential for a healthy democracy. But are today’s news sources providing the information, analysis, and context needed to help Americans make informed decisions about candidates and policies? How can the “nutritional content” of our media diets be improved? How can reporters, increasingly overburdened by multiple demands on their time and reduced resources, provide the best possible reporting for their audiences?

The Shorenstein Center seeks to address these challenges through research that analyzes media performance while providing recommendations for improvement, through the development of resources that educate reporters on the latest evidence-based research, and through the public recognition of high-quality journalism that improves civic life.

Journalist’s Resource

Journalist’s Resource is a project of the Shorenstein Center aimed at bridging the gap between journalism and academia. Its primary goal is helping journalists improve their work by relying more often on scientific evidence and high-quality, peer-reviewed research.

While the Journalist’s Resource team visits journalism classrooms and offers training for professional media, its main focus is running a website that synthesizes and curates contemporary research on public policy topics. The site has informed countless works of journalism and is continually linked to and cited by news organizations large and small, including the New York Times, CBS Philly, Vanity Fair and FiveThirtyEight. About 2 million visitors used the site over the past year. Nearly 49,000 journalists, faculty, students and others subscribe to the project’s weekly e-mail and more than 48,000 people follow on Twitter.

In 2017, Journalist’s Resource moved to extend its reach by offering its first live webinar. It also co-led workshops on research methods at the annual conference of the national Education Writers Association and is making plans to do similar trainings at multiple journalism conferences in 2018. Learn more at journalistsresource.org.