Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Why I Stopped Calling Journalism "The Media"

(This story is also being published by the EJC Magazine)
This story has been translated into Spanish by Patrcio Cevallos Quito on his Pizarrablog (here)

I have stopped calling journalism "the media", and saying the "media industry" when talking about the companies that make journalism and news. Instead I say "the news industry" or "the journalism industry."

Everybody knows by now that the media industry (I say it intentionally this time) is facing challenges. It is working hard to come to grips with the Internet.

Information theory enabled us to define information without referring to the carrier. Information technology liberates the Karma from the flesh. Information can be ripped off one medium and copied onto another. It can be processed: filtered, distorted, enhanced, synthesized. It can be sorted, compared, matched and aggregated. It can be distributed around the neighborhood or sent into space. The various layers of information and machinery formerly glued together are sliding apart. The same is going for the industries that have been handling them. We are witnessing the progression of the information technology revolution.

In the 1980s software separated from hardware. Software became an industry of its own.

In the 1990s network services separated from the physical networks. Network services became an industry of its own.

Now, the content - the narratives - is separating from the media. What we know as the Media Industry is on its way to separating into two industries: those that provide the medium and those that provide the narratives. The trend is a shift away from vertical integration, where single companies own the whole chain from the journalists to the printing presses and the trucks. Perhaps vertical integration can come back someday in another shape, Steve Jobs is showing it's possible for personal computers.

But right now, the trend in what has become known as the media industry is to separate. It used to be a good business for newspapers to own a printing press and trucks. Now it is becoming a liability. Using fossil fuel to deliver yesterday's news printed on dead trees is not a sustainable prospect. With the Internet it is a different game. It is definitely not about owning hardware, and it is not a good idea for news organizations to be Internet Service Providers. It is probably not even a good idea to own the software platform that works as medium for the news stories. Filling the basement below the newsroom with software engineers is expensive, it is much cheaper to use open available platforms, like Blogger, YouTube or Facebook. They are probably ore reliable anyway. And if New York Times will build their own platform, the other news outlets will not want to use it, so teh Times will need to take all the development cost themselves. Bad business.

Media companies are becoming confused. What is their core identity? Editorial content? Marketplaces? Blogospheres? Social networks? The traditional unified bundle of medium, content and classifieds is falling apart; the media industry no longer knows what it is.

It is not that Marshall McLuhan's "The Medium is the Message" isn't valid for the bigger picture. The message is now "Internet." That message is so big the media industry will be completely reorganized. And, just as McLuhan said, new media are rapidly being created within the medium of the Internet. They are nesting and mating. So is the content really separating from the media, if we think in terms of McLuhan? No, the content and the media are co-developing more than ever. But at the same time: Yes, the vertical integration between different levels of content and media is dissolving. The people providing YouTube and the people producing content for YouTube are not in the same organization. The production of narrative is not bundled with the provision of media. They go partying together, but they have stopped going steady.

So what happens to journalism? It will survive, but the circumstances will change. Journalism will not be run by people who control media. Not as things look now. Maybe some new medium that can do it will emerge some day.

But the essence of journalism was never really about mass communication technology, anyway. The deeper concept has always been collective attention. The big business model of mass media has always been generating and brokering attention, what I call "attention work." When newspapers and broadcasters sell ads, they are actually selling the attention of the audience, which was generated by their journalists. The traditional mass media attention business model is A) control a carrier of information that can reach the masses, B) generate attention around the carrier by transmitting interesting information on it and C) sell the attention by charging advertisers for broadcasting their information over your carrier.

How to contain and sell the attention? Controlling the carrier has so far been the answer. This used to mean owning a printing press and the trucks for delivering newspapers, or owning a radio or a TV channel. Not everybody could do that. It required organizations and capital. On the Internet, anybody can publish. It does not require any organizations or capital. Even worse, on the Web, audience attention jumps around wildly. So even if you manage to get a lot of attention, it is not easy to collect it and transfer it to someone else. People will read your story, click on some link that leads to someone else's page, and click on an ad there. Or they will find your story through Google, and click on ads there. The Internet does not encourage walled gardens. Today it is all about revolving doors. The attention workers on the 'Net nowadays refer to audience as "traffic".

In principle, journalism should be in better shape than ever. The core competence of journalists is to generate attention. If you think that sounds bleak, think again - it is very rich. Everybody wants to inform society, only those who can generate attention succeed.

Attention is becoming an increasingly scarce commodity in a world where the problem is not a lack of information, rather the abundance of it. The competition for peoples' attention is fierce. It was easier to manage attention in the walled garden than it is among the revolving doors. We live in an attention economy, and it is going global.

When the attention economy grows, the market grows for attention workers, who generate and broker attention professionally. Do not mix them up with knowledge workers, who generate and broker knowledge professionally. Engineers and analysts are knowledge workers. An advertiser is an attention worker. Journalists are mostly attention workers (they are knowledge workers if they are paid by the audience, and not by advertisers). When journalists switch professions they often go into PR and communications. Attention workers can jump between different attention jobs. Attention workers and knowledge workers have different cultures. The difference is in "need to know" vs. "want to know". Read more about it here.

Public attention is a requirement for public debate. Society needs it. Without shared attention it will be difficult generating shared language that lets people collectively identify which issues are important. Language enables them to act. With everybody trying to catch everybody else's attention, competition for public attention has become even more interesting.

At the same time, attention is gravitational. Attention attracts attention. Everyone is interested in knowing what everybody else is talking about. This is the explanation behind a lot of celebrities and fads. A number of celebrities are famous for being famous. People follow fads because they know other people are following fads.

Reasonably, there is now greater value than ever in generating and brokering attention. The competition is greater. There are more voices. But this does not mean that the era of champions is gone and the grassroots movements will rule the fore. Quite the opposite.

The Internet is creating a global, interconnected, real-time market. Soon, nearly everybody will be online. If a superstar gets the attention from half of the world of any community, will the other half be able to avoid giving their attention, too? They will give at least half an ear. With all the overlapping communities, adding up to the world community, there will be an ecosystem enabling protagonists to play for omni-global attention. The Internet can become the nervous system of a global collective consciousness (although a number of regional powers will try to stop this from happening).

In short, Internet is the biggest opportunity so far for professional journalism. It is true that now that everybody can publish, everybody can be a journalist. But it is not true that everybody will be a journalist.

I was in the first punk rock wave that reached Sweden in second half of the 1970s. Punk rock told us that we could do better than watch Led Zeppelin play, fighting among thousands of other fans to get a peep of them on the stage far away. We now could go to the local club and watch our friends play raw rock music. Even better - anyone who wanted to play could start a band. There was no natural competition between bands. There was a lot of collaboration. Mass-produced instruments where cheap. Nobody cared much if you did not play on a Gibson Les Paul or Fender Stratocaster guitar. I recall a guitarist bragging about playing a "Gippson" guitar. Cheap was cool. Recognize it today?

Blogs are punk rock. It's the Blogosphere vs the Main Stream Media. I recognize it all from the punk rock days.

But in 1976, some teenagers in Dublin started a garage band named "U2." In 1981, Rolling Stone Magazine called them the next big thing. They became superstars. Just like Led Zeppelin.

Who will become the U2 of journalism blogs? It is bound to happen. There are a number of candidates by now: TechCrunch, VentureBeat, GigaOm, Engadget, Huffington Post. They have all gone past being garage bands playing for free at local pubs. They are running commercial operations employing people and working on finding new business models.

Some of these blogs are growing larger audiences than many so-called "mainstream media". Their style is maturing. They are renewing journalism.

Everybody can blog. Not everybody can be a journalist. Who is a journalist on the Web?

Journalism is about serving an audience. There has been a lot of work done on the principles of journalism. These principles are perhaps best codified at They include some tricky concepts like "truth" and "objectivity," which are very difficult to nail down. But the general message is there: It ain't journalism if it doesn't serve the interest of the reader. I subscribe to that.

So how do we know if a blogger is serving the audience or him/herself?

Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus showed it was a good idea to categorize plants by the visible characteristics of their reproduction mechanisms. Generally, a concept needs to have a reproduction mechanism to hang around. In any profession or business, that mechanism involves a business model. Without a business model that reinforces journalism, journalism will cease to exist as a profession. Let's look at the basic principles of the journalism business model.

There are today three business principles for journalism: one that sells content to the audience (e.g., newsletters), one that sells the attention of the audience (e.g., ad-based publications), and one that gets sponsorship for delivering information to the audience without biasing the message in favor of the sponsors (e.g., public service).

All three business models depend on one thing: loyal attention from the audience. In order to draw loyal attention from the audience, the journalist has to in return be loyal to the audience. This is the difference between journalism and PR. Public relations works on behalf of the source. Journalism works on behalf of the audience. If journalism loses the attention of the audience, it will not have customers. It will not have advertisers. It will not have sponsors.

For amateur bloggers, this does not matter much. They will publish what they want, not having to show loyalty to anyone.

But if they start getting a lot of attention, they will have to choose if they want to benefit from it. If they choose to build a reputation on the attention they are receiving, they will soon become dependent on it. The more their reputation depends on the loyal attention of the audience, the more they will need to care about their loyalty to their audience. This is true for both rock bands and bloggers. Original punk rockers would not suck up to anyone, including an audience. For U2, the audience is their constituency.

Until now, a journalist has been defined as someone working on behalf of an organization with a journalism business model. All such organizations have had business models that manage printing newspapers or broadcasting, something that has required considerable effort and varying amounts of cash flow.

The Oxford Dictionary on the Internet - - defines journalism as "the activity or profession of being a journalist", and defines a journalist as "a person who writes for newspapers or magazines or prepares news or features to be broadcast on radio or television."

That has until now been a convenient definition. Either you are a journalist or you are not. The requirement is being connected to an organization that controls a medium.

With the Internet, that no longer applies. Anybody can publish on the Internet. But there will be a power distribution of attention (the same type of curve as the famous "long tail"). Some people will get a lot of attention. Others will get attention only from family and close personal friends. Journalism will be done by sites producing news that have developed a dependence on their audience, forcing them to be loyal to it.

Therefore, at the core of maintaining journalists is the loyalty to the audience and a business model that reinforces the loyalty to the audience. If that is in place, journalism will flourish as a profession in the attention economy.

Storytelling, attention and loyalty between journalism and audience, and a business model that keeps reinforcing it. This should do the trick for defining journalism in modern times.

So let's look at how journalism is defined today, in December, 2008. It shows the state of consciousness around these issues.

Contemporary Definitions of Journalism

Encyclopaedia Britannica at follows the Oxford dictionary; journalism is "reporting news for media: the profession of gathering, editing, and publishing news reports and related articles for newspapers, magazines, television, or radio."

It is ironic the Internet is not mentioned in the and definitions of journalism. A recent OECD report suggests it is high time they do something about it. By 2007, 58 percent of OECD country households had access to the Internet. Korea was in the lead, with 94 percent. Non-OECD economies are following, with some, like Singapore and Israel, well ahead of OECD averages. Eighteen percent of all OECD Internet users created Web pages in 2007.

The effects on media industry will just grow. Japan had as many as 35 million people reading blogs in March, 2007, double the number two years earlier. Internet advertising accounted for 7 percent of global advertising expenditure, growing faster than on any other medium. This is a very important indicator, since the traditional business model for journalism earns money by selling ads.

It can be that Oxford and Britannica are experiencing a dilemma: Saying "Joe is an important guy, he was on TV" convinces people Joe is important, even if the ring of importance has ebbed since there came more cable channels than people could count. Saying "Joe is an important guy, he was on YouTube" is not at all convincing. But when Barack Obama broadcast his talks on YouTube, it was seen as very important. Lesson: It is not about the medium, it is about symbols of collective attention and reputation. As the medium becomes shared by increasing number of very diverse brands, the medium will mean less, and the brands will need to mean more.

It seems the Internet and YouTube are confusing concepts for people trying to define journalism in terms of media. Why?

Traditional media, like newspapers, TV and radio, are all one-to-many communication infrastructures. The infrastructures are operated by publishers/broadcasters. Therefore the infrastructure comes to represent the publishers/broadcasters in peoples' minds.

The traditional media are built around certain hard technologies, printing presses or radio transmitters and receivers. This limits the information they deliver. Newspapers can't deliver real-time information, video or sound. Radio and TV are very linear - they deliver only one moment at a time on each channel, limiting the overview. This makes people connect the different media to different types of storytelling: Newspapers are good for analysis, depth and length. TV is good for visualization, emotions and breaking news.

The Internet is not a traditional medium. The Internet does not lock in the information. The core of the Internet, TCP/IP, is not much more than a protocol for sending information across connected digital networks that speak different languages and use different technologies. If anything, it loosens the bonds between the content and the carrier. The vision is that any machine can be connected, any content carried. It does not matter if the content is text, sound or pictures. It does not matter if the information is old or new. There are no special types of contents or emotions that become the character of the Internet. Everything is about packages of bits. The communication does not need to be one-to-many. It can be one-to-one, many-to-one, one-to-many or many-to-many. There is no obvious connection between it and publishers/broadcasters. The medium is no longer controlled by "the media".

Wikipedia's definition is slightly less problematic in this sense: "Journalism is the profession of writing or communicating, formally employed by publications and broadcasters, for the benefit of a particular community of people. "

The hard technologies of mass communication are moved backstage; no listing of "newspapers, radio and TV". The Internet can fit into it, leaving Wikipedia one up on Oxford and Britannica.

But Wikipedia runs instead into another problem. Wikipedia defines journalism as a profession, working for the benefit of the audience. The benefit of the audience is OK. It is in line with the second principle of journalism of the Committee of Concerned Journalists: "its first loyalty is to the citizens." Real life may often be more cynical than that, but clearly loyalty is a requirement journalism.

When Wikipedia liberates the definition of journalism from the delivery infrastructure, like newspapers or TV, it lets go of a strong argument: journalism is a profession. Perhaps Wikipedia is compensating by stating journalists must be formally employed by publications or broadcasters. This definition saves journalism as a job, but it weakens the definition as such.

Is journalism always a profession? Dan Gillmor has for some years argued that journalism is becoming an act instead of a profession. Dan makes the case for citizen journalism, where the the audience will be journalists. While the greater involvement of the audience in journalism is beyond doubt, the breakthrough of true citizen journalism is waiting to happen. Regardless the outcome, Dan is making a strong point against the traditional journalism profession. People now better think twice before using 'profession' as a component in the definition of journalism.

In each case, Wikipedia gets it plain wrong in defining journalists as "formally employed by publications and broadcasters." What about freelancers?

The Oxford, Britannica and Wikipedia definitions of journalism all rely on a crutch, relating to its circumstances surrounding journalism rather than catching it by its essence. The essence of journalism is not "printing press" or "broadcast equipment." The essence of journalism is not "employment," either. These are the circumstances of journalism. Innovation is changing the circumstances rapidly. People are getting confused. They have a feeling for what journalism is because they know what journalism does for them. But they don't have words for it. The challenge: finding a definition of journalism that both catches its essence and survives changing circumstances.

Wikipedia catches a part of the essence in "communicating for the benefit of a community." But that is not enough for defining journalism. Teachers, lobbyists and PR people can all be communicating for the benefit of a community, but they are not journalists. Wikipedia sorts them out by adding "employed by a publication or broadcaster." That sounds like a circular definition, it's like saying "journalism is when journalists communicate for the benefit of a community."

A good definition of journalism enables it as a profession without defining it as one. I also think it is possible to make a definition of journalism that does not bundle it with the medium that carries it. A good definition defines journalism by its essence, and not by its circumstances.

Finally, let's look at the American standard reference. Merriam-Webster Online plays it safe with many definitions.

Journalism is defined as 1 a: the collection and editing of news for presentation through the media b: the public press c: an academic study concerned with the collection and editing of news or the management of a news medium 2 a: writing designed for publication in a newspaper or magazine b: writing characterized by a direct presentation of facts or description of events without an attempt at interpretation c: writing designed to appeal to current popular taste or public interest

News is defined as
1 a: a report of recent events b: previously unknown information news for you c: something having a specified influence or effect news for lawns and gardens — Garrison Keillor> news>2 a: material reported in a newspaper or news periodical or on a newscast b: matter that is newsworthy3: newscast (a radio or television broadcast of news)

Websters is actually doing reasonably well, they just need some weeding. Journalism 2b and, especially, 2c will continue to work in the future, as may 1c. The definition of news is also doing well in cases 1a, 1b and 2b.

But the rest may not serve their purpose in due time.

***Addendum March 13 2011****

After writing this post, I did come up with a suggested definition for "Journalism":

"Journalism is the production of news stories, bringing public attention to issues of public interest. Journalism gets its mandate from the audience. It is required to act in the interest of its audience."
("Innovation Journalism, Attention Work and the Innovation Economy",  D. Nordfors,  Innovation Journalism Vol.6 No.1.  / 2009)

I got some critique on that by Carl-Gustav Linden, who said that "public interest" weakens the definition. There is journalism that is not in the interest of the public. I bought that and revised the definition:

"Journalism is the production of news stories, bringing public attention to issues that interest the public. Journalism gets its mandate from the audience. It is required to act in the interest of its audience."

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Come Celebrate the 40th anniversary of Engelbart's "Mother of All Demos"

On December 9 1968, Doug Engelbart and his team from SRI International Augmentation Research Center performed "the mother of all demos" in front of a gaping audience of one thousand computer engineers. The demo let the cat out of the bag in a monumental way; Doug's big idea that the big thing about computers was not automation, but augmenting human intelligence was demonstrated in real life. The demo featured the first computer mouse the public had ever seen, as well as introducing interactive text, video conferencing, teleconferencing, email and hypertext. The audience could do nothing but cheer.

The demo has come back to life again on Google video (can anyone think of a better fit?). Here it is:

The Program for the Future Conference
will be celebrating the event on Dec 8 and 9 together with Doug and his friends, among the speakers are
  • Professor Thomas Malone, Founding Director, MIT Center for Collective Intelligence
  • Professor Hiroshi Ishii, Associate Director, MIT Media Laboratory
  • Peter Norvig, Director of Research, Google
  • Andries van Dam, Professor, Brown University
  • Alan Kay, President, Viewpoints Research Institute
  • Steve Wozniak, co-founder, Apple Computer, Inc.
Click here for the program. The conference is organized and sponsored by the Tech Museum in San Jose, The MIT Museum, our colleagues at Media-X at Stanford, Adobe, Visual Insight, NMC, SDForum and Creative Commons.

On Dec 9, the birthday of the demo, the Innovation Journalism program will be contributing a panel of journalists and bloggers, discussing the future of technology and collective intelligence. In the panel are three trigger-happy intellectuals: Gregg Pascal Zachary, Peter S. Magnusson and Michael Kanellos. I will be facilitating the discussion, which will be taking place at the Wallenberg Hall at Stanford.

We will be focusing on the big issue of 'collective intelligence'. This is a core issue for Doug Engelbart. He believes that humanity needs to develop its collective intelligence in order to solve the increasingly complex threats against it, such as environmental catastrophes, nuclear wars and pandemics. The combination of information technology and human society can bootstrap the collective IQ we need to encounter these threats.

Doug keynoted IJ-4, the Fourth Conference on Innovation Journalism here at Stanford in May 2007. He talked about the "human system" and the "tool system", combining in a bootstrapped collective system, where both systems co-evolve, increasing the collective intelligence of the system. He pointed out that journalism is a part of the perceptory system of the collective intelligence. "Not the sensory system," he said. "The perceptory system". Very wise and visionary.

In March this year, Innovation Journalism Fellow Phyza Jameel did an interview with Doug on the need for collective intelligence. This short interview is a real gem, Doug's picture of the future is fascinating, scary and powerful - here it is:

The conference is a collective effort. Doug and his friends welcome you to be part of the Program for the Future team organizing the conference. If you want to get more involved with the Program for the Future Global Challenge for Collective Intelligence tools, contact Mei Lin Fung

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Innovation Journalism: Copyright and the Use of Creative Commons

Information technology has topsy-turvied the sense of who can do what with the creative work of other people. Ten years ago, nobody would have imagined the Pirate Party - the Swedish political party proposing it is a human right to share music and entertainment on the Internet without following the standard copyright rules.

Today, everyone - including journalists - who want to understand innovation in markets for creative work must understand the copyright debate. It is about how we relate to art, entertainment or journalism, and how people working with it will earn a living. It is about how we will use computers and how the computer industry will look like, because the source code for computer software is under copyright protection. With the Internet, it has become a new game, but the copyright rules are still pretty much the same as before. Many people are ignoring them. The consequences are very strong in all fields that publish creative work.

This is the reason why EJC - the European Journalism Centre and my Injo program at Stanford organized the conference "Innovation Journalism: Copyright and the Use of Creative Commons" at the EJC HQ in Maastricht on 13 Oct 08. EJC has an excellent coverage of the event on their website.

Here is a short presentation of the invited speakers:

The key issue in all copyright protection is that of 'fair use'. 'Fair use' is the exception to the rule, cases where it is OK to copy, because you are adding so much of your own creativity that the end result is to be considered as yours. The Director of the Fair Use Project, Tony Falzone from Stanford, talked about this, and how it is applied on the Internet. Tony works with Stanford Professor Lawrence Lessig , the father of Creative Commons that "provides free tools that let authors, scientists, artists, and educators easily mark their creative work with the freedoms they want it to carry." It is an effort to carry copyright into the Internet age.

Richard Horning is a partner at law firm Fish and Richardson and advisor to the Innovation Journalism program at Stanford. He talked about intellectual property protection and the freedom of the press (the first amendment here in the US). Rick showed how laws covering intellectual property and trade secrets have increasingly been used in order to silence journalists. Paradoxically, blogging is also making it more complicated to protect free speech in the court rooms - it is no longer obvious who is a journalist and who is not, and who should be protected by the first amendment. A typical case is Apple vs. Bloggers, where Apple sued a group of bloggers for revealing company secrets. Rick has a long background in both first amendment and intellectual property and innovation, and shared a number of glimpses into history with us. He for example was the legal councel of the Rolling Stone magazine when they were subpoenad to reveal the sources for their interview with the Symbionese Liberation Movements, the kidnappers of news tychoon heiress Patty Hearst, who after being kidnapped started appearing as one of them. (The Rolling Stone magazine was a venture capital funded startup at that time, with the same investors as a semiconducter startup called Intel.)

Evi Werkers and Sari Depreeuw, law researchers from FLEET - Flemish E-publishing Trends in Brussels, discussed the controversies between Internet search companies and content producers. They told the details about when Belgium became the center world attention two years ago, when a court in Brussels ordered Google News to remove all links to stories published by Belgian newspapers. The news stories are until today searchable only through local Flemish and French search sites.

In 2001 poet Jonathan Bailey got the adrenalin shock of his life when he found a large part of his own poetry and prose republished on an anonymous website. He tracked down the owner of the site and phoned the person, prepared for a hard fight. He found himself speaking to a 14 year old kid. Jonathan got fascinated by the problem of online plagiarism, and founded the website PlagiarismToday. He has since then resolved over 700 cases of plagiarism and turned it into a business. Jonathan has published a series of papers with thoughts on how to stop plagiarism on the Internet. He has written his own blog post about the Injo event in Maastricht (here).

Prof Gundolf S. Freyermuth from the International Film School in Cologne is an old friend of the Innovation Journalism program. A former lifestyle journalism pioneer in Germany, he has told stories about not fitting into the traditional news beats that many innovation journalists are living with today. This time Gundolf traced the origins of copyright, starting in the renaissance. Five hundred years ago, making a copy was just as expensive as making the original. The introduction of the printing press made copyright a real issue. Now that the printing press is being replaced by the Internet, another big change is under way. Gundolf thinks we will all be winners.

The presentations of the speakers are available on the EJC website.

I want to thank everyone at the EJC for putting together this enjoyable event: Willi Rütten, Biba Klomp, Bianca Lemmens, Arne Grauls, Bernd Kapeller, Ivan Picart, Kathlyn Clore and Ruth Spencer. They are very valuable friends, doing very important work.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Injo @ World Economic Forum

I have recently come home from a trip to Dubai, where The World Economic Forum organized the Summit on the Global Agenda. In their own words:
The Summit on the Global Agenda is a new, unique gathering of the world’s most influential thinkers – leaders from academia, business, government and society. Its purpose is to advance solutions to the most critical challenges facing humanity. This inaugural Summit of the members of the Forum’s Global Agenda Councils, the world's foremost intelligence and knowledge network, was held in partnership with the Government of Dubai on 7-9 November.

The world needs to examine the basic operating systems that drive its economies, markets and societies and aim for a “fundamental reboot” to establish a fresh platform based on renewed confidence and trust, and on sustainability, responsibility and ethical principles. That was the over-arching message that 700 of the world’s top thought leaders from business, government, academia and civil society delivered at the end of the inaugural Summit on the Global Agenda, convened by the World Economic Forum in partnership with the Government of Dubai.
I am a member of the Global Agenda Council on the Future of Media, together with Injo-colleagues Willi Rütten, director of the EJC, and Zafar Siddiqi, founder of CNBC Pakistan/Arabiya/Africa (both speakers at IJ-5), and roughly a dozen other top people from the world of journalism.

The detailed issue description of the council is available on the WEF website. WEF had selected the a number of input dimensions for us:
  • Social Media
  • Intellectual Property and Copyright
  • Media and Global International public opinion
  • Media new models
  • The role of Media as public service
  • Women in Media
  • Innovation Journalism
It is gratifying that Injo is included in this list.

We quickly decided that our key issue was the future of journalism, not the media. The challenge is that journalism is needed more than ever - 'we live in an over-connected, under-informed world' and 'journalism is vital to help societies develop'.

Here are some key sentences from our initial report:
The same technology that has allowed people to create and share content has also undercut the media providers that served their communities with information. As blogs and social networks shine a light on new parts of the world, in other parts newspapers are turning the lights shutting down, cutting reporting jobs and

But throughout that change, the professional, public purposes of journalism – to stimulate, educate and inform public debate, and to call to account – remain vital to the process of improving the state of the world.

Journalism needs to be reliable and credible, and that requires training and professional education –especially in societies striving to develop open and representative government. A missing component in many developing countries is a lack of professional journalists.
The full initial report is available here.

We discussed the need for journalism to be hosted by a business model that provides incentives to be loyal to the audience. If it does not, it can lead to conflict of interests. The present business model which is based on controlling the physical medium - that's why it is called the 'media' - does not have a long term future, even if it in certain parts of the world is still doing very well. The council asked itself "So how can we save journalism to help it save the world?"

Not surprisingly, we did not produce a new bumper business model for journalism. The council did, however, suggest that the WEF lifts journalism higher on its agenda. It was discussed if the WEF may start its own initiative for journalism, focussing on the global agenda issues. Here is a snapshot video interview with our council chair Pat Mitchell who is spearheading the idea of a WEF Global News Service.

The overall message from the councils was a call for continued innovation and globalization as we are heading deeper into this mother of financial storms.

Here is the video with the whole ending plenary session of the Summit on the Global Agenda:

Ulrik Haagerup, head of the Danish national news (at 2:18:00 in the video) suggested journalism needs to "re-boot faith in the future". He offered other journalists to join him in making "constructive journalism", journalism looking into possibilities, not only at problems. Ulrik Haagerup, Willi Rütten and I will be running a workshop next summer at the Deutsche Welle Global Media Summit, labelled "Constructive Innovation Journalism".

Klaus Schwab's summary of the Summit can be viewed at 2:19:30 in the video.

I am very much looking forward to continuing working with the Global Agenda Council. Also, the WEF Media and Entertainment Network will be arranging a seminar within the Innovation Journalism Fellowship program 2009.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

InJo Seminar on Intellectual Property Nov 13 in Maastricht, Netherlands

The Innovation Journalism Program at Stanford, IIIJ and EJC - the European Journalism Centre are arranging a seminar on intellectual property on Nov 13 at EJC in Maastricht, Netherlands. Here is the press release by EJC:

Maastricht - October 16, 2008

To share or not to share: this is a question which has already been answered. Now a group of thinkers will gather in the Netherlands to discuss the more complicated quandary: How?

Innovation thinkers like David Nordfors of Stanford University and Richard Allan Horning, a Silicon Valley insider, will join intellectual property experts like Anthony Falzone, a lecturer/litigator for a free conference at the European Journalism Centre.

They will analyse the moving intersection of copyright and innovation from several sides. Innovation in the realm of intellectual property is ongoing; it is perhaps most visible in the proliferation of Creative Commons licensing.

The conference, titled Innovation Journalism: Copyright and the Use of Creative Commons, will be held Thursday, 13 November, at the main office of the European Journalism Centre. The EJC is located in the heart of Maastricht, a picturesque southernmost city in the Netherlands.

To register, please e-mail Bianca Lemmens or Anniek Reintjens.

The Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science will sponsor this one-day event.

This is the second in an EJC series of innovation seminars held in Maastricht. Last year’s event focused on Innovation Journalism at large.

During that conference, Nordfors, who is originally from Sweden, stressed the benefit of innovation in a democratic society and the need to understand innovative processes and ecosystems through Innovation Journalism. InJo treats innovation as a topic and follows its development in technology, business, politics, etc.

If innovation could be covered as a distinct topic within the mainstream media, society would be better able to understand the processes which are behind it and contribute to its development, Nordfors said.

This year’s event will concern itself with the role of copyright within the innovation sphere. This free seminar has limited space, so please contact the EJC as soon as possible in order to guarantee your spot.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

How to Report on Environmental Innovation / Cleantech

Only a few years ago almost nobody was thinking of cleantech journalism. There was business journalism and there was environmental journalism. Environmentalists were rejecting the market forces, and the commercial players were not charmed. Business journalism would not cover environmentalists, and environmental journalism would not engage in market analysis. Back in 2005, before most people ever heard of cleantech, the Innovation Journalism program looked into how to bridge these worlds.

Injo Fellow Birgitta Forsberg hosted by the SF Chronicle blended her expertise in business journalism with her passion for environmental issues in a project we branded 'environmental innovation journalism', not far from cleantech journalism today. She did a number of successful cover stories for SF Chronicle and summarized her tips for others to use in the essay 'How to do environmental innovation journalism'. It is a very nice mix of analysis, thumb rules and examples of real stories. Reading it now makes me realize how pioneering and timely her work was.

There are so many business and tech journalists today who are interested in getting into the cleantech field, it makes sense to post her essay again.

PS. Birgitta is presently working with Swedish business weekly Affärsvärlden.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mexico Interested in Injo Initiative

I have had a three day tour in Mexico, with fifteen conferences and meetings on Innovation Journalism, all inspiring. The meetings crossed the 'triple helix', involving news organisations, universities, industries and government.

I gave a keynote in the parliament, the Congreso de la Union, for journalists, PR-people and politicians. It was hosted by Jesus Vicente Flores Morfin, member of parliament and secretary of the Commission of Science and Technology. He also participated in the panel discussion after my talk. You can read the coverage of the event here (html) (pdf) in Spanish and here in Google-translated English).

I also keynoted a journalism conference at the Tecnologico de Monterrey university campus in Mexico City. Coverage here (html) & here (pdf) in Spanish and here in Google-English.

The man who brought the idea of Injo to Mexico is Jorge Zavala, Mexican entrepreneur and founder of the Mexican TechBA accelerator in Silicon Valley, which is connected to FUMEC - the United States-Mexico Foundation for Science. Jorge pretty much grew up in a newsroom. His father was a well known journalist, who often brought his boy along to work. People like Jorge, who work with entrepreneurship and public innovation policy, and also have strong personal ties to journalism culture, often immediately grasp the concept of innovation journalism and the potential for it in the innovation economy.

Jorge and Fumec brought a sizeable Mexican delegation of journalists and funders to IJ-5 at Stanford in May, and they now followed up by arranging this visit with funding from Conacyt - the Mexican National Council of Science and Technology.

FUMEC is headed by CEO Guillermo Fernandez and chairman Leopoldo Rodriguez. The visit program was put together by Madai Quiroz Uria. Together with Jorge they form an entrepreneurial team, bridging Mexico and Silicon Valley, who want to drive an innovation journalism initiative.

Mexico is very well positioned for it. There are well connected people in journalism, universities, industry and government who get the Injo concept, that the Fumec/TechBA team can include or leverage on.

A Mexican Injo initiative has a great potential for both Mexico and Silicon Valley. Here in Silicon Valley there is a large Mexican population, but most of them are not in the innovation ecosystem. There is cultural separation between the Hispanic workers and the hightech workers in the Valley which is not constructive. If high quality Mexican journalists will be Injo Fellows working with Silicon Valley newsrooms, it will create networks between journalists in both countries enabling them to bridge subconcious cultural divides, and connect the dots between Mexico and Silicon Valley in the innovation economy. Given the large constituency of Mexicans in the Valley, this can be huge.

Monday, October 06, 2008

InJo Fellowships 2009

A more detailed description of the InJo Fellowship Program 2009 is available here.

We are planning the sixth round of the Innovation Journalism Fellowship Program at Stanford, starting Feb 2 2009. Innovation journalism fellows will go through an orientation at Stanford before beginning their work off campus with hosting US newsrooms. Potential hosts this year: AlwaysOn-Network, Bloomberg, CBS CNET, Fortune Magazine (New York), GreenTechMedia, San Francisco Chronicle, Seed Magazine, Technologizer, Time Magazine (New York) and VentureBeat

Fellows based in Silicon Valley will meet regularly at Stanford for lectures and discussions. Past lecturers have included among others Doug Engelbart, inventor of the mouse and Vint Cerf, father of the Internet, Dan Maydan, who built up Applied Materials, and Curtis Carlson, President of SRI International. All Fellows will take active part in arranging IJ-6, the Sixth Conference on Innovation Journalism, which will take place May 18-20 2009 at Stanford. Fellows will also participate in two seminars held together with The World Economic Forum Media & Entertainment Industry Partnership and the US National Academies.

So far, four countries are participating in nominating fellows to the program: Sweden, Finland, Pakistan and Slovenia. If you are a journalist/editor who wants to apply for a fellowship, please check with your national contact (check the program description).

The call for the Swedish program is here - the call closes on November 3; the call for Pakistan is here; The Finnish call closes on Oct 17 - contact Turo Uskali for more information (Tel: +358-40-534-0249).

The Innovation Journalism Fellowship Program is funded by VINNOVA, Competitiveness Support Fund, Helsingin Sanomat Foundation, SITRA and the Scholarship Agency of Slovenia.

To set up a program for nominating fellows or to start any type of innovation-journalism program, contact me. Note that the program at Stanford does not fund other programs. External funding must be arranged before nominating fellows.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Speed of New Words as an Innovation Indicator

I recently had the great pleasure of being one of the World Economic Forum "Innovation 100" who convened here at Stanford in order to discuss the reasons behind innovative clusters. I will tell you more about the details when the WEF releases its report.

The World Economic Forum Innovation 100 summit is a part of their work on producing an 'Innovation Heatmap' of the world. People have ideas all over the world, but where are the places they are being successful, and what is it with these places that makes it happen just there? Finding the places is not so tricky, once they are successful in innovating - like Silicon Valley. But it is very difficult to nail down a good set of indicators that are useful for benchmarking innovation hot spots, offer a clue of why innovation is going well or not, and that can predict which are the coming hot spots.

So far, the number of registered patents is considered as one of the most important indicators, but it is far from the whole story. Patents can be key in some sectors, like pharma industry, but in other innovation fields like software and services, patents are much less relevant. A few years ago I edited a book that looks at intellectual property issues in the context of commercialization of academic research. It is a complex issue.

There are today lists that rank innovative regions. The European Innovation Scoreboard is one of them. The rankings usually use indicators like those provided in the US Science and Engineering indicators from NSF, or the EU Science and Technology Indicators from Cordis. These indicators are good for assessing things like educational level of workforce, number of registered patents or published research papers - the types of numbers that are possible to measure in surveys or by scanning public registers. They usually miss out on one crucial issue for innovation: mobility. Mobility can be between various professional domains: innovation is not driven by science OR technology OR business OR politics, but by the interaction between them. Mobility is also geographical: Silicon Valley hosts people from all over the world. Even though it seems doable to trace the mobility of people, it is a controversial thing to do - people have the right to privacy. It is also difficult to quantify in an easy way (its much easier with number of patents or math test ratings)

Innovation is often about new combinations of existing concepts, or re-framing something in a new context. In the seventies, very few thought of computers having anything to do with storing pictures, even less music. Bringing artists into the world of computers and vice versa was probably more important for innovation than doubling the number of excellent Cobol programmers (the biggest programming language of that day). At the same time, many innovation scoreboards will care more for programmers than artists, and not think of addressing the communication between them. The people running such scoreboards may have some valid concerns about how to address such issues: how does any measurable quantity relating to artists relate to innovation? Does the number of art galleries scale with innovation? How? How can the innovative interaction between artists and programmers be measured?

I have a hunch that innovation hot spots are more likely to be places with low thresholds between people doing different things, where people easily get to know each other, and where they can easily interact in making novelties happen. I imagine they are places with a high concentration of people that find few things as important as the next big thing, who want to be a part of it, and who like chatting about it with anybody who is interested, regardless of profession or background. In Silicon Valley, it happens that people start companies with people they met at their children's birthday parties.

All this requires one thing: This diversity of people in the innovation ecosystem need to share a language that allows them to chat about the stuff that interests them. Otherwise they will have a tough time sharing interests and adding their own parts to it in a way that other people will understand. Innovation is about the introduction of novelties, which often come with new words and narratives, so I guess I am suggesting that innovation hotspots are more likely to be places where people in the innovation ecosystem can rapidly develop new shared language.

Since a few years back, there are tools on the Internet that can measure the development of language. Google Trends is one entertaining example, it 'charts how often a particular search term is entered relative the total search volume across various regions of the world, and in various languages' (Wikipedia). I think future key innovation indicators can be found through sources like Google or Facebook, finding the hotspots on the geographical world map, as well as the social map, where new language is growing the fastest, also analyzing how the new language connects to market value, weighing these things together.

Today, not many of the people dealing with how we innovate give much conscious thought of how we generate the shared language that is needed for any process of innovation or successful outcome thereof. Sociolinguistics and studies of innovation can be a great pair!

Here are some arguments, linking the thought about language as an innovation indicator back to earlier thoughts posted on this blog:

The formation of new shared language is always a part of innovation.

A concept requires the following language components in order to be shared by people:
  1. A Name - so that it can be referred to
  2. A Definition - so that it can be identified
  3. A Narrative - so that it can be related to and put into context; a narrative is needed to relate a concept to the surroundings and lives of people, to cultures, or to other concepts
Innovation is "the process of creating and introducing new customer value to the market" (as defined by C. Carlson and W. Wilmot). This makes it always into interaction between many people, requiring new language.
  1. Innovation is the creation and introduction of new customer value to the market
  2. In order to introduce something, it needs to be communicated
  3. Communication requires shared language
  4. New concepts need new names, definitions and narratives to be a part of the language
  5. The new names and definitions need to be called to peoples attention so that the new things can be discussed and introduced in our language.
  6. People's attention will influenced by attention workers - professionals who generate and broker peoples attention, such as journalism, PR, marketing or lobbying - who have a stake in innovation. They typically take part in the innovation value chain by acting either in the interest of the sources of new language (PR, Marketing, Lobbying) or in the interest of the audience for new language (journalism). The attention workers of different sorts interact with each other, forming an ecosystem which will be facilitating the formation and introduction of new shared language. It may be referred to as the innovation communication system.

As I said above, innovation is not about science OR technology OR business OR politics, etc. - it is about the connection between them! All involved professional fields have their own language. The concept of 'attention workers' and the 'innovation communication system' introduces incentives and mechanisms for creating shared language between different sectors and professions who come in touch with each other through innovation.

I believe our ability to generate new shared language is one of the bottlenecks for innovation. It is especially challenging to 'bridge verticals'. People in different professions can be talking about the same things without understanding each other, because they have different language for it. Sometimes different specialists don't have words for what other specialists are doing: Most politicians don't understand radioengineering and most radioengineers don't understand political science. Bridging them is an opportunity for attention workers, the key professional group from the societal point of view are the journalists - the attention workers who act in the interest of the readership (PR are attention workers who act in the interest of the sources - they are both needed in the bigger game).

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Intrapreneur's Dilemma

I was the other day at the World Economic Forum Media and Entertainment industry network meeting in New York. It was a really valuable meeting with lots of very enlightening discussions on the future of the media industry in these innovative times.

Here is a thought that is relevant for the present challenge of the media industry. It is generally valid, not only for the media industry, and applies to all people and traditional organisations who are seeking to innovate. Let's call it 'The Intrepreneur's Dilemma'. An 'intrapreneur' is an entrepreneur within an organization. Here goes:

When someone tries to innovate within a traditional organization,
few will understand what he/she is doing,
but everybody will understand who is a trouble-maker.

After the innovation has been embraced by the organization,
few will remember who started it,
but everybody will remember who was a trouble-maker.

This is the dilemma encountered by many intrapreneurs -
they risk punishment for success.

Organizations that want to be innovative need to find solutions to the intrapreneur's dilemma and its consequences, if they don't wish to set negative examples that will scare off people from intrapreneurship. Here is an example: as long as a new project is of little impact and not well understood, the intrapreneur will be fighting for its continuation while others may ignore its existence or perhaps wonder why it should be allowed to steal attention from the more important core activities. Once a project has impact and receives recognition, incumbents within the organization will want to influence or control it. People may reason that 'a project as important as this one should not be run by a trouble-maker'. This situation requires a constructive interaction between a skilled intrapreneur and an enlightened organizational leadership. A good innovation system within the organization may help provide solutions, but I don't think it can replace individual savvy and diplomatic skills.

If anybody who reads this has a good story to illustrate the 'intrapreneur's dilemma', or knows of descriptions of similar phenomena under different names, send me an email or leave comments and links here below.

Friday, September 05, 2008

The World Economic Forum Innovation 100 Summit

I had the pleasure of being one of the hundred at the The World Economic Forum "Innovation 100 Summit" on Sep 3-4. The WEF is a leader in spotting global economic trends, and publishes yearly the Competitiveness Index at the meeting in Davos. They are now looking at innovation, the Innovation 100 is the start of a major effort to penetrate the topic thoroughly. The WEF is interested in the role of journalism in the innovation economy, which was a reason for them to invite me.

Here is a picture of "the Innovation 100":
Here is the World Economic Forum description of the event:
While most agree that culture and people are the most important drivers of innovation, business leaders are finding it hard to understand how to respond with new management and operational models. The World Economic Forum is partnering with Harvard Business Review, McKinsey & Co, SAS, and Thomson Financial to synthesise the most relevant data available globally to create the most complete factual basis for discussions on technology innovation. This meeting - aimed at the top 100 thought leaders - is one part of many dialogues occuring, to help set the tone of the global discussion on innovation. The objective was to explore this topic from a global, regional and corporate level, with two clear areas of focus: Culture of Innovation and Location of Innovation.
- Innovation 100 - Photos

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Finnish Innovation Journalism Research Gets 900.000 Euro

Injo as a theme for academic research has taken a big step.

Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation (Tekes) has awarded a big research grant (almost 900 000 euro) to a Finnish research consortium in order to execute research on global innovation journalism 2008–2010. The research consortium will cooperate with my innovation journalism program at Stanford.

The Finnish consortium consist Department of Mass Communication/University of Tampere, Department of Communication/University of Jyväskylä, and Futures Research Centre/Turku School of Economics. All aforementioned institutions have already done research on innovation journalism for several years, but mainly in national, Finnish context.

The main aim of the new research project (acronym as Ginjo) is to enlarge and deeper the knowledge of global innovation journalism, and also develop new working methods and tools for news media. Case studies will concentrate on topics such as “green tech” and eldercare

All together different Finnish funders, Tekes, Helsingin Sanomat Foundation, and Sitra, have already agreed to invest 1,6 million euro for innovation journalism research and education until year 2012.

According to Tekes it invested 329 million euro in R&D projects and innovation activities by companies, universities, institutes of higher education and research institutes during January–June 2008.

For more information, please contact Dr. Turo Uskali.


Department of Mass Communication/University of Tampere

Department of Communication/University of Jyväskylä

Futures Research Center/Turku School of Economics

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Injo Program Presented at IAMCR Conference

The first five years of the Innovation Journalism Program were summarized at the IAMCR conference in Stockholm "Media and Global Divides". IAMCR is the worldwide professional organisation in the field of media and communication research. The conference this year hosted 950 researchers from 85 countries.

The Injo paper was written by Turo Uskali, running the Finnish innovation journalism research program, Jan Sandred, who runs the Swedish innovation journalism program, and me (David Nordfors, running the Innovation journalism program at Stanford).

The paper summarizes trends among the 410 stories in US news outlets written by the 38 Injo Fellows between 2004-2008. 

The conference draft (the paper is being finalized at this time) sketches some recommendations to innovation journalists:
  • Be innovative.
  • Enjoy mixing business, politics, technology, science and culture.
  • Try to “shop”, and use “enough” time for your work.
  • Use wide variety of sources, not only the easiest (PR) ones.
  • Try to include futures perspectives into the stories by predicting possible scenarios instead of having only one possible. (This could for example prevent different, too enthusiastic new tech or other innovation related “bubble” manias.)
  • Remember that publishing a story in online environment is just only the beginning of the process. Therefore one should create interactive tools, e-mail feedback, and online discussion forums in order to get readers involved in reporting, feedback, and discussions.

IJ-5 Final Conference Documentation

Here is the final website of IJ-5, the Fifth Conference on Innovation Journalism, which took place at Stanford on May 21-23 this year.

All conference documents are available through one portal (here):
  • the program
  • the presentations including summaries, articles and slide presentations
  • speaker bios
  • list of conference participants
The conference website was made entirely with Google Docs and Blogger, which turned out to be very efficient for working interactively in a group in building the conference.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Injo Discussed in EU parliament

The innovation journalism program is presently working on broadening public understanding of how independent journalism covering innovation can be as important for democracy as traditional political journalism, while at the same time offering a promising new market for the news industry. It is a boot-strapping operation that requires contacts with all types of stakeholders in the innovation economy.

Knowledge4Innovation, headed by Roland Strauss, organized an event in the EU parliament on April 8, bringing together stakeholders in the EU innovation economy including parliamentarians and top level decision makers from the EU commission, such as Angelika Niebler, EU parliament chairwoman of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy; Janez Potocnik, EU Commissioner for Science and Research, and Odile Quintin, Director General, DG Education and Culture.

I was selected by K4I to read the declaration of the event, and to speak about how independent innovation journalism is the key for bringing together the innovation economy with democratic society, a point that was well understood by many of the politicians in the audience. Potocnik has previously spoken about this.

The program of the event is here, and the list of participants is here. A substantial part of the Brussels innovation policy power players were present. The organisers had not counted with the enormous interest, and were forced to turn down people, as the event could not host more than 150 participants. This is an indication of how 'innovation' is rapidly claiming an increasing mindspace in Brussels.

The K4I news release for the event is here.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Yearly Finnish InJo Award to Tarja Halla

Finjo - the Finnish Society for Innovation Journalism - hands out a yearly award for best Innovation Journalism story.

The second Finnish Award of Innovation Journalism was given to Tarja Halla, a reporter for the daily newspaper Maaseudun Tulevaisuus. The story Huomisen lihaa kasvatetaan laboratorioissa (Tomorrow´s meat grows in laboratories) is about the future of the meat production.

Well-known Finnish politician and writer Osmo Soininvaara chose the winner this time. Soininvaara has served as Minister of Health on Social Services (2000-2002), and has a licentiate degree in statistics. In his remarks, he said that “the story started right from the core of the whole issue”, and “the language was clear, statistical figures informative, and general view inspiring”.

All together 50 journalistic stories competed for the award, which is called Innovaatiokide 2008 (Innovation Crystal 2008), and is was accompanied by a cheque of euros 3000. The sponsor of the prize was Finnish high-tech company Vaisala.

Award winning ceremony took place during the Media Fair in Helsinki April 11th.

Maaseudun Tulevaisuus:
Helsinki Media Conference:

Saturday, April 05, 2008

InnovationBeat Newsroom

InnovationBeat - the training newsroom for the Innovation Journalism Fellowship Program at Stanford - has been completed for this round. Big thanks to the readers and the newsroom: the Injo Fellows 2008 and the coaches, G. Pascal Zachary and John Markoff!

The fellows published in all 53 stories, and there were a large number of lunch speakers, of which some where portrayed in InnovationBeat, among them Vint Cerf and Doug Engelbart.

I also want to thank Curtis Carlson and SRI International for providing us with a venue. The SRI support has been most important for the program.

Strategic Innovators: InJo as Driver for Economic Growth

The Indian publication "Strategic Innovators" invited me to write an essay on Innovation Journalism as a Driver for Economic Growth.

The published article is available here (Strategic Innovators Vol.1 Issue 3, Feb-Apr 2008; "Innovation Journalism as a Driver for Economic Growth", D.Nordfors p.14-19.)

"Strategic Innovators" is published by The IIPM Think Tank, an independent, India-centric research body, is inspired by Dr. M.K. Chaudhuri's vision of India as an economic powerhouse in the 21st century. The IIPM Think Tank is committed to enhance public awareness of policy issues an economics and management and to engineer solutions that will fulfill the 'Great India Dream'. By publishing the finding of its research, and though the active participation of its senior researchers in the media and policy, it aims to bring new knowledge to the attention of policy makers.