Health + Data = 2014 Knight News Challenge

In the past few years, the Knight News Foundation and its Knight News Challenge has made its name as supporter of media innovation; you'll find them behind many citizen media-oriented projects and even around the Global Voices website (including our recent features on Chicas Poderosas).


Logo available for media use from Knight Foundation Communications website.

Knight has supported projects which have become extremely important tools for others working in ict4d* such as Tor, Freedom Fone, UshahidiFrontline SMS, and many others. Their take on support for journalism is unique – as noted by Fast Company – who, in writing about Knight's CEO Alberto Ibargüen, notes the decision to more or less ignore the precedent:

“Rather than continue to instruct the smartest, best journalists on how to be Woodward and Bernstein, how to be 1975,” Ibargüen said, “a better investment was experimenting in ways that people would disseminate and use information.”

And with this, the organisation has moved away from grants to universities or large institutions, instead bringing together startup and tech + nonprofit attitudes. In the past 7 years, the news challenge has funded projects covering journalism, open government, mobile, and the spread of local information.

Fast Company also noted in their article the recognition of failure as important in moving forward for innovation.

This year, the Knight News Challenge: Health will focus on the question: “How can we harness data and public information for the health of communities?”

This time, they will collaborate with other organizations to organise the call and “discuss how data and information can lead to healthier communities” – including the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Health Data Consortium, Clinton Health Matters, and California HealthCare Foundation.

Submissions are open 3 to 17 of September (more details on their FAQ page). If your work touches the field of health, we encourage you to consider applying!


* ict4d = information and communications technology for developemet


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