The Center for Cooperative Media’s collaborative journalism database is live!

Search, sort and learn about collaborative journalism projects from around the world

Happy New Year! We’re excited to announce the soft launch of the Center for Cooperative Media’s Collaborative Journalism Database, which currently contains information about 94 news collaborations between more than 800 organizations and 151 individuals.

This is a small percentage of all of the collaborations that have taken place over the past decade, and we’re excited to watch the database grow.

The first iteration of the collaborative news database features information about funding, timelines, and organizations involved.

The database features all different kinds of collaborations, from temporary, content-sharing efforts to more integrated approaches where newsrooms shared content, data, and resources at the organizational level. We used the categories from Sarah Stonbely’s research paper on collaborative journalism models to classify each project into one of six categories, depending on how long the collaboration was and how the organizations involved worked with each other.

Other information in the database includes when the collaboration started, who was involved, a short summary of the project, funding sources, the tools that news organizations used (when known), and whether the collaboration had a formal agreement in place or someone in charge of the efforts.

When you look at the the collaborative news database, you’ll see it’s a work in progress — not every entry is fully filled out yet. (We’re working on that.) Over the next few weeks we’ll be getting in touch with the organizations that we’ve entered into the database, to ensure that the information is accurate and comprehensive.

And that’s where you come in. We are asking you to:

  1. Make sure your project is listed: We’re in the process of loading every collaborative journalism project we learn about into the database. We started with lists from Sarah Stonbely, Josh Stearns, and Melody Kramer — and have been scooping up projects listed on Nieman Lab, Poynter, CJR, and Medium. If your project isn’t listed yet, you can submit it using this form — we’re editing entries as they come in and adding them to the database.
  2. Make sure your project is accurate: If you search the database and find your project, please let us know if there is missing information and if you can fill in any of the missing information. You can email me at melodykramer@gmail.com with any information that should be included, or to fill in any of the missing data points.
  3. Share the database with others: The collaborative news database is only comprehensive if we know about your project. We want ensure that projects from every part of the world and every size newsroom are represented. Here’s a Medium post about the database and what we’re hoping to achieve. Please share this link, and let your colleagues know about submitting their information.
  4. Help us enter more data about news organizations: To make the database more useful, we’re including information about each organization that takes part in a collaboration. So far, we’ve been doing this by hand…but there are likely ways to automate some of this data gathering. We have the name, Wikipedia page and website of each news organization — we’re hoping to also include their social handles, location, and approximate size — so that we can map out collaborations around the world and classify them by newsroom size. If you’re a Beautiful Soup pro — or want a scraping challenge — please let me know (melodykramer@gmail.com). (This would make an EXCELLENT project for a journalism class.)

Over the next few weeks, we’ll be entering more projects, making sure the information about each project is comprehensive and accurate, and getting the word out about the database.

We want this to be useful for newsrooms and funders who are thinking about collaborations, and want to learn more about what other organizations have done.

If you know of any additional information that you think might be useful, please let us know. You can reach out to me at melodykramer@gmail.com or the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University at info@centerforcooperativemedia.org.


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Want to connect with other people interested in collaborative journalism? Click here to join our collaborative news Slack team!

If you have any questions, please email info@centerforcooperativemedia.org.