From January 27-29, 2023, The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands partnered with The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and Chalkbeat to host The Summit for Local News. Recognizing the catastrophic effects that the rapid decline of local news has had on communities across the country, a broad and diverse cross-section of local news leaders, journalists, supporters, and readers have been contributing their perspectives over the past year to The Roadmap for Local News: An Emergent Approach to Meeting Civic Information Needs. The Roadmap, which was officially published on February 2, 2023, is aimed at identifying solutions to the local news crisis.
The objective of The Summit for Local News was to review, discuss, and stress-test the recommendations in the Roadmap. The Summit demonstrated that collaboration between practitioners, funders, experts, and other stakeholders is not only possible but essential to meaningfully address the crisis and to seize the opportunity to build a robust civic information ecosystem that directly benefits local communities, as well as our society and democracy at the national level. As our partner, John Palfrey of the MacArthur Foundation said, “This work is so important—and I do hope we can find ways to do more, work more in partnership, and get more done by collaborating deeply in the months and years to come in the interest of a truly vibrant, inclusive ecosystem of news and information and democracy for all.”