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      Solutions Journalism Summit 2019 (Nov. 8-11) in Clearfield

      • Solutions Journalism Summit 2019 (Nov. 8-11) Photo #1
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      November 8, 2019

      Friday   5:00 PM

      8841 N. Alpine Loop Road
      Clearfield, Utah

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      Solutions Journalism Summit 2019 (Nov. 8-11)

      Please visit for all information regarding the summit. To register for the Hub, go to Q: What is the Solutions Journalism Summit? A: Short version: The Solutions Journalism Summit is the Solutions Journalism Network's annual gathering of unbelievably smart and fun journalists from around the world focused on (or interested in) reporting on how people are responding to social problems (aka “solutions journalism”). Together over 2.5 days, we’ll explore best practices, new ideas, and potential collaborations between the roughly 90 attendees and SJN team members. Longer version: The Solutions Journalism Summit is the only gathering (in the world) that digs into the nitty-gritty details of how you do this type of journalism--how to create revenue opportunities around solutions journalism, how to interview differently for solutions stories, how to incorporate engagement activities into SJ stories and series, how to improve solutions pitches to editors, how to hire for reporters doing solutions journalism, etc. While it's high-minded and inspiring and fun, it is also unmistakably focused on the tactical--collaboratively tackling challenges and sharing best practices in reporting, editing, and engagement as it relates to solutions journalism. People come with challenges, and through the hyper-engaging format of the gathering, they get it addressed--or at the very least connect with a community of journalists facing the same problem.  Q: Who comes to the summit?A: This is a gathering for journalists and people working in the world of journalism interested in how to do (and teach) solutions journalism. The summit is for engagement editors who are curious about bringing their audience together in new ways, around new topics. It’s for crime beat reporters who are curious about how gun ownership in Hawaii is soaring, but gun violence remains at a statewide low. It’s for education reporters who wonder how two Seattle middle schools started emphasizing student attendance—and saw test scores soar. But not just them. Q: Who am I going to meet?A. We convene a diverse group of journalists–editors and reporters and engagement specialists alike–committed to a new journalistic frame, a new way of telling stories, a new way of making impact in a community. There are executive editors and media entrepreneurs of all types, people who have launched podcasts and regional collaborations, and built organizations focused on audience engagement, better and more diverse stories, and a more civil dialogue. There are publishers, senior editors, and producers from top print and digital publications, public radio, and broadcast. There are professors and educators teaching solutions journalism courses in universities across the country. There are Pulitzer Prize winners, Emmy Award nominees, and JSK & Nieman Fellows. As well as, you know, the former official photographer to the Bolivian President. We expect a lot more of the same journalistic heartthrobs this year. Q: Panels are invigorating. How many panels can I expect?A: .... Q: I’m just kidding! Panels seem to really limit a group’s potential. What's the format?A: We couldn’t agree more, which is why this summit operates under the “all teach, all learn” mindset and follows the "unconference" model. We think everyone has just as much to offer as they do to learn. There is a wealth of knowledge in those brilliant heads of yours and we want to create a space for it to be shared. We want to understand how you’re practicing solutions journalism, what obstacles you face, what questions you still have, how you’ve been a leader of the practice, and how it’s changed your approach to your work. The unconference model allows for this by allowing participants to propose conversations (not presentations) based on what they're interested in in the moment. This will be the most participatory event you've ever been to. It sounds like total chaos, we know. But trust us; it works, especially when you're in the skilled hands of a truly excellent facilitator like Chris Michael. "I admit that I was initially a tad skeptical about the un-conference approach," said one 2017 summit attendee, "But it was really effective, largely because the format allowed for organic follow-up on themes and topics that needed it." 81% of attendees last year said the event exceeded their expectations. Whether one-on-one, small group discussion, or a conversation among the room, the goal is to do just as much sharing as listening, as much talking as tweeting. Q: Will the agenda focus on topics?A: This year, for the first time, we will offer participants thematic, issue-based tracks based on the interests of most participants. These tracks will allow you to move through the 2.5 days with a deeper focus, and to build stronger connections and explore collaborations with other participants covering similar issues (e.g. those reporting on climate change and climate resilience). We polled our network of 4,000+ journalists in April, and these (the chart below; n=100) are the thematic topics people were most interested in digging into. It can give you an idea of what we might offer as tracks (but no guarantees! The final agenda will be shaped only from attendees' interests, not our broader network). Q: What am I going to learn?A: After you fill out the survey, we'll work through the responses, and try to shape an agenda that best serves your needs and recognizes the diverse talent in the room. Here’s the agenda from last year and some of the small-group conversations we had: "Strategies for fundraising around solutions journalism"; "Immigration from a solutions lens"; "Best practices in (solutions) collaborations"; "Partnering and collaborating with non-journalists"; "The SJ pitches that ended up as stories in top publications"; "Solutions journalism in broadcast"; "How can journalism school classes/courses collaborate on solutions projects"; And almost 50 others. Of the attendees from last year: 97% said the Summit allowed them to meet peers who they otherwise would not have had the chance to meet; 97% said they gained new insights and tactics that will help them further their work; & 80%  better understand solutions journalism and the work that SJN does. Q: So how do I participate in the agenda design?A: We will send out a survey to all attendees to help us shape the agenda to best meet your needs. Tell us what you’re an expert in, what you’re looking to better understand, and how we can help. We craft the agenda directly from your responses. Q: So I'm convinced it will be intellectually stimulating. But will I have fun?A: I know this is audacious to say, but yes, indubitably. Not only are people generous and collaborative, but we (SJN) also incorporates things like a storytelling night, appropriate stretching time, and dance parties into the mix. Q: Why isn't every gathering held at Sundance Mountain Resort?A: We have no idea. A short shuttle ride from Salt Lake City airport, it's easier to get to than Brooklyn on the weekends. Sundance sits on the slopes of Mt. Timpanogos in Utah’s gorgeous Wasatch Range. The quiet resort is an absolutely stunning location, ideal for meaty discussions, creative brainstorming, and after-hours old-fashioneds at the Owl Bar. See more details about the resort here and fawn over a Sundance google image search here. Q: How much is a ticket? What does it include?A: The first 30 tickets for the summit are $350 (for Hub members only). After that, we'll open up the rest of the tickets for $650 ($800 for non-Hub members) until they sell out. (Last year we sold out in June.) The ticket includes delicious meals on Friday night, and meals all-day Saturday and Sunday. The ticket also includes new friends, collaborators, & insights, and these amazing little handmade soaps that housekeeping puts in all the rooms every day. But, you know, come for the agenda, not for the soap. Note: the ticket does NOT include lodging. See here for info on how to reserve a room. Q: How can I get my boss to cover my trip to the summit?A: Give them twelve minutes in peace with a cup of coffee and this.

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