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Welcome to the

LEARNING LAB

Your one-stop guide to producing solutions journalism—rigorous and compelling reporting on responses to social problems. From finding great story ideas, to asking the perfect interview question, to spinning a powerful narrative, it all starts here.

START WITH THE BASICS

2 hours

What You'll Learn: The key tenets of solutions journalism. What is it? What is it not? Why is it important? And how to make it happen, from idea to reporting to completed story.

Who It's For: Journalists who want to add rigor and impact to any sort of reporting.

Preview
Show Content Outline +

I. Introduction (30min)

Welcome

How do I know it's Solutions Journalism?

How do I know it's NOT Solutions Journalism?

Why Solutions Journalism?

What Kind of Impact Can Solutions Journalism Have?

Solutions Journalism in Your Workflow?

II. Basic Reporting (60min)

Steps to Creating a Solutions Story

Introduction

Reporting Instructively on Failure

Slices

Bringing a Solutions Lens to Short Pieces

Solutions Journalism and Investigations

Introduction

Good Solutions Stories...

Conducting Interviews for a Solutions-Oriented Story?

Introduction

Crafting Your Pitch

Bringing a Solutions Focus to Your Beat

III. Basic Storytelling (30min)

Structuring a Solutions-Oriented Story

Story Type: Positive Deviant

Story Type: Big New Idea

Story Type: Experiment in Progress

Story Type: Location Transformation

Heroes vs. Characters

Explore Our Issue Guides

Hechinger thumbnail Education guide

Education Guide

Preview

1 hour, 25 minutes

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: How to apply the solutions lens to the most pressing issues in public education, with a special focus on navigating complex evidence.

WHO IT'S FOR: Education beat reporters who want to raise the bar on their coverage.

Violence guide

Violence Guide

Preview

1 hour

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: How to reframe coverage of gun crime, sexual assault, detention, and more — with advice and examples from reporters in the trenches.

WHO IT'S FOR: Journalists ready to change their approach to reporting on crime.

Health guide

Health Guide

Preview

1 hour, 10 minutes

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: How to use solutions reporting to enhance coverage of complex issues such as access to care, substance use disorder, and mental health treatment.

WHO IT'S FOR: Health reporters aiming to shift the lens on their beat.

Go Deeper

Coming Soon!

Editor ToolKit

1 hour, 50 minutes

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: How to get your newsroom staff started on solutions journalism — and how to build toward integration of the approach across your coverage. When to employ solutions reporting to build audience engagement and community impact.

WHO IT'S FOR: Editors who find the solutions approach intrinsically attractive — and want to take it from concept to sustained practice in their news organizations.

Coming Soon!

Engagement ToolKit

2 hours

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: How to design and manage online and offline activities that amplify solutions stories to drive audience interest and more constructive public discourse. How to create feedback loops that can inform future coverage and metrics of your work’s impact.

WHO IT'S FOR: Reporters and editors who see powerful potential pathways from between solutions journalism and engagement — and want to build those connections consistently into newsroom practice.

Collaborative playbook

Collaborative Playbook

Start

2 hours

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN: How to design an effective collaborative between/among news organizations, including how to surmount challenges such as editorial direction, spending decisions of shared funds and internal communications.

WHO IT'S FOR: Editors interested in designing a collaborative or working with other news organizations in a joint reporting initiative.

I WORK IN, TEACH, OR STUDY JOURNALISM Not a journalist, but I want to learn about solutions.
AS A MEMBER, YOU WILL BE ABLE TO:
  • Access our training curriculum or attend a training
  • Share your stories
  • Join a local community of journalists
  • Attend story workshops and events to hone your craft
  • Get funding and additional support
  • Access the full Solutions Story Tracker®
  • Save favorite stories and create collections in your user profile
TO JOIN, PLEASE SUBMIT THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION (*=REQUIRED)

Not a journalist? Register here instead.

Here is what you will get:
  • Unlimited access to thousands of stories from around the world
  • First look and access to new features, tools, and resources
  • Curated newsletters with top stories
  • Invitations to SolutionsU community events
  • And much more to come…
It’s easy and will take less than 2 minutes.

Journalist or J-School? Register here instead.

Help us grow our database of solutions stories! Please enter the following information. Our staff will review the story, and if it meets our criteria (see below), it will be added to the Solutions Story Tracker®.

Please submit a story URL

Great suggestion! So great, that we already have that story listed in the Solutions Story Tracker®. View it here.

It may take a few weeks to see your piece in the Solutions Story Tracker®, as we have a backlog of submissions longer than Ben Hur that we’re diligently working to eliminate. We appreciate your patience.

SJN'S CRITERIA FOR GOOD SOLUTIONS JOURNALISM:
  • Can be character-driven, but focuses in-depth on a response to a problem and how the response works in meaningful detail
  • Focuses on effectiveness, not good intentions, presenting available evidence of results
  • Discusses the limitations of the approach
  • Seeks to provide insight that others can use

Hearing from Hub members is the best part of our day after coffee.

If you want to get:

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Photo Credits: Almudena Toral; Gabe Hernandez/Corpus Christi Caller-Times; Cody Pope; Matt Stokes

All other photos are licensed under Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 2.0 Generic Creative Commons license, and are credited to the following photographers: Rowan El Shimi; Samuele Arcidiacono; Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum 2017 © DW/H. W. Lamberz

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