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Detroit bankruptcy and beyond

Editor’s note: Introducing the Detroit Journalism Cooperative


Today marks the official launch of the Detroit Journalism Cooperative, an unprecedented collaboration among some of Michigan’s most trusted media organizations.

For the next year, and hopefully beyond, Bridge and our nonprofit partners will perform the unnatural act of working together – rather than in competition. The mission: to share data-driven, solutions-based journalism that deepens public understanding of Detroit’s journey through bankruptcy and engages residents in the revival of this once-powerful city.

A grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation allows Bridge and its nonprofit partners at WDET, Michigan Radio, Detroit Public TV and New Michigan Media to pool resources and expertise to go beyond the daily coverage and offer insights on Detroit’s future. (A separate grant from Renaissance Journalism’s Michigan Reporting Initiative and the Ford Foundation allows these same nonprofits to collaborate on statewide issues, including ongoing reporting on Michigan’s emergency manager law.)

At Bridge, we see the Cooperative’s role as complementing coverage that Detroit and Michigan residents already receive from the Detroit Free Press, the Detroit News, local TV and radio, and national news organizations. Indeed, the Cooperative is already receiving help from the Detroit Free Press, which graciously supplied most of the photos in today’s Bridge package. The Freep will also run articles by the Cooperative through its “A Better Michigan” section.

In today’s report, Bridge establishes benchmarks that we will return to in the months ahead to chart Detroit’s progress and hold public officials accountable. Going forward, we aim to be an indispensable resource for the people of Detroit – who have endured years of mismanagement and broken promises – and residents across Michigan, who sometimes question how their lives and communities, and tax dollars, are tied to the fate of the state’s largest city.

We encourage you to subscribe to Bridge and bookmark the Cooperative’s website. Individually, the media groups involved in the Cooperative have covered Detroit’s financial crisis with tenacity and insight. Together, we aim to provide an extraordinary level of public reporting for this iconic city, and all of Michigan.

David Zeman is a 20-year veteran of the Detroit Free Press, and served as director of content and communications at the Education Trust-Midwest.

4 comments from Bridge readers.Add mine!

  1. Javan Kienzle

    And will this cooperative dig up Matty Moroun’s skeletons? And will they utilize facts dug up by local bloggers?

  2. William Bailey

    This is an extraordinarily needed light for Michigan’s citizens on the expenditure that all of us are likely making to support Detroit with our tax dollars.
    The committmentnof the Governor is very important but so is the committment to transparency

  3. Jackie Berg

    Bridge Magazine and its media partners deserve on-going support and applause for this important effort, which will break new ground on communications in Detroit. This is welcome news…

  4. Lance Weyeneth

    I applaud the collaboration between these professional entities and look forward to their findings…


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