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Community-Centered JournalismEngaging People, Exploring Solutions, and Building Trust$
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Andrea Wenzel

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780252043307

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252043307.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 23 September 2021

Developing an Intervention

Developing an Intervention

Building a Public Sphere in Polarized Places

(p.75) Chapter 3 Developing an Intervention
Community-Centered Journalism

Andrea Wenzel

University of Illinois Press

Chapter Three integrates previous research on solutions journalism and engaged journalism into a communication infrastructure theory framework, which looks at the health of local “storytelling network” ties between local media, organizations, and residents. This framework is used to assess storytelling networks, then design and pilot interventions to strengthen them. It focuses on Western Kentucky, an economically marginalized, but more rural region with a different demographic and political context to previous urban cases. The chapter explores how place identity and political polarization affect ties between residents, community groups, and local journalists. It then looks at a series of pilot interventions that grew out of a participatory design process—including an online and offline town hall, a participatory journalism program, and a series of listening sessions focused on informal rural gathering spaces. It explores how these interventions address key trustworthiness factors, and account for the needs and assets of local places.

Keywords:   communication infrastructure theory, engaged journalism, intervention, participatory journalism, place, polarization, solutions journalism, storytelling networks, trust, Western Kentucky

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