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Environmental Reporting Fellowships
Workshops & Panels

The Future of Environmental Journalism:
Who, What, When, Where, How?

2008-2009 Program
Panel Discussion
February 27, 2009

Agenda | Q&A


SUNSHINE MENEZES, Metcalf Institute, moderator.
JOSHUA BENTON, Nieman J-Lab, will discuss innovations in business models for news organizations and how reporters can adapt their craft for the new era of journalism.
DAVID CASE,, will discuss the development of this new model for international reporting - using 65 'super stringers' from around the world to feed content to the site.
FRANK HERRON, UMass Boston's Center on Media and Society, will discuss the center's New England Ethnic News wire service and the opportunities for ethnic media.
DOUG STRUCK, freelance journalist and teacher at Boston University, will discuss tips and tools for being a successful freelance environmental journalist.


Panelists will begin by describing their backgrounds and current endeavors. Discussion questions will include:

The Job Picture

  • With the big shift happening in the news media industry and affecting the careers of many journalists nationwide, what innovations and opportunities are out there that young reporters should know about?
  • Who are the new audiences resulting from new approaches to news delivery?
  • Do the ethical standards that require reporters not to stray from journalism still apply?What kinds of alternate jobs could journalists do that would also be acceptable to news organizations?
  • With elimination of science beats and units nationwide, how can science/environmental journalists continue to do this type of beat reporting?
  • What are the different ways a reporter can market a story as both a freelancer and a staff reporter?
  • Are there are jobs in the broader spectrum (writing/editing/publishing/online ) that are considered stable or potentially influenced by an improved economy?

The Industry Forecast

  • What is developing in ethnic news media organizations around the nation?
  • What are the opportunities to continue to hone the craft of writing in the new media landscape? Should perfecting that craft play a secondary role to developing other skills, such as multimedia?
  • How can environmental journalists set themselves apart from others on the beat as the economy and, presumably, news industry revives?
  • How much of a role will "social media" (Facebook, twitter, blogging) play in the future of journalism? At what cost are the traditional news organizations going to use these tools? Are they really the means to our future in the field?
  • What are your thoughts on the emergence of nonprofit journalism?

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April 27, 2009