National Public Radio has received grant commitments totaling $17 million over two years in support of its efforts to expand news coverage and build a platform that enhances the digital listening experience.
The grants include $9.9 million to NPR and six member stations to develop a local-national listening platform and deliver content tailored to listeners based on their location and content preferences. According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation has committed $5.4 million to the effort, including $2 million to NPR and $3.4 million in matching grants to member stations KPCC Southern California Public Radio, KQED Public Radio San Francisco, Minnesota Public Radio (MPR), WBUR Boston, WHYY Philadelphia, and WNYC New York; while the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $1.5 million. Three NPR trustees and their spouses — Paul and Heather Haaga, William and Lia Poorvu, and Howard and Fredericka Stevenson — will each give $1 million in support of the effort.
In addition, grants from the Bill and Melinda Gates ($1.8 million) and Wallace ($1.5 million) foundations, Gates Foundation ($3 million), and Ford Foundation ($750,000) will enable NPR to expand its coverage of education, global health and development, and race, ethnicity, and culture. NPR is responding to the increased demand from audiences for flexibility in consuming content seamlessly across various digital platforms," said Michael Maness, Knight's vice president for journalism and media innovation. "The platform will allow listeners to engage in new ways with NPR and its member station partners, making the quality journalism that is so important in a democracy more accessible, especially for a new generation."