The Charlotte Arts Journalism Alliance (CAJA) is the result of a challenge issued by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts to create a new model for arts journalism.
One of three winning projects chosen from 233 applications from across the country, CAJA received a grant of $100,000 from the Knight Foundation and the NEA. The CAJA model aims to broaden awareness of the region’s cultural landscape and to deepen community discussions about the arts by focusing on three key goals:
1. Increasing the quantity of arts reporting in the Charlotte area
2. Improving the quality of local arts reporting
3. Expanding access to great arts journalism
The Charlotte Arts Journalism Alliance (CAJA) is a collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and five major media players: the daily newspaper the Charlotte Observer; commercial station WCNC-TV; public radio station WFAE; African American interest website Qcitymetro.com; and online civic and cultural magazine Charlotte Viewpoint.
By commissioning trained arts journalists to produce compelling stories to be shared among the partners, the project will increase the quantity of local arts journalism and highlight the city’s cultural diversity, thus growing audiences.
To help develop stronger skills in arts reporting and criticism, CAJA will provide specialized training for aspiring citizen journalists under the guidance of the university. To expand access to CAJA stories and other locally produced arts journalism, we will develop an app that will highlight CAJA’s work and solicit reader interaction.