Stony Brook University’s School of Communication and Journalism joins journalism schools at three other leading universities in the U.S. — University of Georgia, Northwestern University and Arizona State University — that will become inaugural solutions journalism hubs, charged with ensuring that journalism focused on responses to problems is integrated into the teaching, research and service of leading journalism programs.
“These four journalism schools have an amazing wealth of talent and resources, and the Solutions Journalism Network [SJN] is excited to partner with them to help further the spread of solutions journalism. These new hub universities are showing a serious commitment to leading this important work in their regions and nationally, as well as collaborating with their peer institutions to undertake this mission,” said Francine Huff, SJN’s director of journalism school partnerships.
As hubs, these journalism schools are building and convening a national conversation about the importance of rigorous reporting on what is working as well as problems in bringing communities together to have a meaningful impact on the issues and challenges facing society. Educational institutions are incubators of creativity, innovation and research, and the four hubs are well equipped to help transform journalism so all people have access to news that is inclusive and helps them envision and build a more equitable and sustainable world.
Solutions journalism is rigorous and compelling reporting about responses to social problems, which includes how that response has worked, or why it hasn’t; insight (what can be learned from a response and why it matters); evidence (providing data or qualitative results that indicate effectiveness); and limitations (placings responses in context). Founded in 2013 by David Bornstein, Tina Rosenberg and Courtney Martin, SJN aims to ensure by 2025 that the majority of U.S. news consumers, and increasing numbers globally, have access to solutions journalism, no matter where or how they get their news.
Stony Brook’s School of Communication and Journalism offers a master of science in journalism focused on solutions journalism, and is committed to developing and telling stories across media that empower communities and diverse perspectives. The university has close connections to Long Island media, particularly the NPR-affiliated WSHU, that support solutions journalism work in the region. As one of the inaugural hubs, the school will catalyze the growth of solutions journalism in media education and professional organizations across the New York metro area and beyond.
“Stony Brook is delighted to be named one of the first Solutions Journalism Hubs, and we are eager to work with the other hubs to support a national movement that is focused on solving the myriad and complex problems facing society,” said Laura Lindenfeld, dean of the School of Communication and Journalism and executive director of the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science. “We know that building relationships and partnerships like these builds trust, and trust is the most important ingredient to addressing problems like institutional racism, the climate crisis and so many others.”