Five common ways that collaborative journalism projects get started

The Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University has been doing a lot of consulting this year with journalists around the U.S. who are interested in launching collaborative projects.

Often during those calls, we give an overview of the landscape of collaborative projects based off our internal research and our public database. (Sidenote: if you want a quick primer on collaborative journalism in general, watch this video).

During some of those conversations in the last several months, I’ve been asked frequently: How DO most collaborations get started?

We’ve found that the most effective collaborative projects we’ve studied are often:

If none of those conditions exist, but you have a group of people who are building relationships and trust and want to work on something together, there are a few other ways to approach selecting a topic.

Want to know more?

We’re starting to stockpile resources at collaborativejournalism.org and send a newsletter on this topic twice a month — subscribe here.

Stefanie Murray is director of the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University. Contact her at murrayst@montclair.edu.

About the Center for Cooperative Media: The Center is a grant-funded program of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University. The Center is supported with funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Democracy Fund, the New Jersey Local News Lab Fund of the Community Foundation of New Jersey and the Abrams Foundation. Its mission is to grow and strengthen local journalism, and in doing so serve New Jersey residents. For more information, visit CenterforCooperativeMedia.org.

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An initiative of the School of Communication at Montclair State University

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Stefanie Murray

Director of the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University.