Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy


The Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy is a group of 17 media, policy and community leaders. Its purpose is to assess the information needs of communities, and recommend measures to help Americans better meet those needs.

The Knight Commission sees new thinking about news and information as a necessary step to sustaining democracy in the digital age. It thus follows in the footsteps of the 1940s Hutchins Commission and the Kerner and Carnegie Commissions of the 1960s.

But in the digital age the stakes are even higher. Technological, economic and behavioral changes are dramatically altering how Americans communicate. Communications systems no longer run along the lines of local communities, and the gap in access to digital tools and skills is wide and troubling.

The Commission seeks to start a national discussion – leading to real action. Its aims are to maximize the availability and flow of credible local information; to enhance access and capacity to use the new tools of knowledge and exchange; and to encourage people to engage with information and each other within their geographic communities.

Website of the Knight Commission here.
Full PDF of report: Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy


I found this report when I was browsing for free content for my Kindle. If you have a Kindle or the Kindle software and want to use that to read the report you can get the Kindle edition here for free.

The report is also available as a free download at the Knight Commission website. Whatever format you choose I recommend you look at this report.

I have flipped through this one already. It doesn't have much connection to the realm of LIS even though they had an actual MLS librarian on their panel. While the recommendations are neat, I've pretty said much similar things in recent months on LISTen. ________________________ Stephen Michael Kellat, MSLS PGP KeyID: DC5A625B

I am doing more than flipping through it. I am reading it and it is a conceptual piece but something with the title it has is going to be a conceptual piece.

The overall tone of the document induces the reader to think how they could become more involved in the democratic process and what they could do to spread useful democratic information.

Libraries are mentioned in the piece and maybe libraries should play a bigger role but it is up to them to create that larger role.