Ashoka and the Knight Foundation

Little did I know that when I decided to check out this new site (popurls for everything, as Ryan puts it), I would run into Ashoka, the same organization that helped to give Rene Edde and I some semblance of a purpose after we left a questionable program.

Apparently, at the We Media 2008 conference it was announced that the Knight Foundation was investing $3 million into Ashoka to find “social entrepreneurial journalists.” Rob Park writes on the We Media blog:

“Both organizations are looking for journalist that will create social change in geographically specific communities. But this partnership will be, “a tension filled relationship” according to Ibarguen.

The Knight foundation has historically been focused on journalism from a American perspective while Ashoka has its roots in a global context. That tension as well as other criteria distinguishing quality journalism from advocacy will have to be worked out between the two massive organizations.

However, Diana Wells, president of Ashoka, clearly defines the qualities they are looking for in a journalist:

  • Creativity – An ability to combine visionary goal setting with a practical approach.
  • Entrepreneurial quality – A total commitment to changing patterns and systems.
  • Commitment to social impact – The potential of the idea to solve an endemic problem.
  • Ethical fiber – An ability to inspire others by strength of character and integrity.

(Taken Directly From Ashoka’s website:”

You can read Park’s full post here, or the official press release from the Ashoka site here.

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