Commonplace Forum
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Commonplace Forum

The Finding Common Ground Cohort meeting at IJF18.

Reflecting on the Work of Engaged Journalism

It’s been a busier month than usual at Agora Journalism Center. And as I often say, it’s a “good” busy. It’s even more gratifying when the projects we’re working on are directly related.

First up: a reminder that our deadline to submit your application for “Engaging Communities: Reflecting on the Work of Engaged Journalism” is this Friday, April 19 before 5 pm PT / 17:00 (GMT-8). Eight mini-grants across Europe and North America will be selected and receive up to €10,120 in support and travel funding to expand on their engagement project as well as attend two facilitated sessions with the grantee cohort. Apply now!

And if you’re curious what this funding opportunity and collaboration might look like, please check out this video (on the left) explaining our project Finding Common Ground. The piece demonstrates how we supported engaged journalism projects through transatlantic cooperative learning. The project is admittedly meta as we not only supported journalism projects that encouraged face-to-face interaction, but the project itself also encouraged to share their engagement practices with those whose perspective is quite different.

When the video piques your interest, we welcome you to read the project’s full white paper: Building Engagement: Supporting the Practice of Relational Journalism. In this report, we present the Reflective Practice Guide, a methodology that journalists can use to document and reflect on their work in engaging with their community. We hope you’ll take this tool for a spin and offer some of your thoughts and feedback. We’ll be working on an interactive version of the tool to help journalists more easily track and measure their efforts.

I’m particularly honored to have worked with:

And finally, both initiatives, Finding Common Ground and Engaging Communities, wouldn’t be possible without the generous support from Robert Bosch Stiftung and the News Integrity Initiative at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York. Thank you for your continued support!

Andrew DeVigal is an endowed chair in journalism innovation and civic engagement at the University of Oregon School of Journalism & Communication as well as the associate director of the school’s Agora Journalism Center, the gathering place for innovation in communication and civic engagement. DeVigal is also the executive director of Gather and can be reached at



The Commonplace Forum is the virtual gathering place to discuss what we’re thinking, doing and learning at the Agora Journalism Center

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Andrew DeVigal

Andrew DeVigal


Husband, father, brother, son, bridge builder, strategist; endowed chair in Journalism Innovation & Civic Engagement, University of Oregon School of Journalism