Lenfest Institute opens applications for Beyond Print grant program

The Institute will offer grants of up to $25,000 to support strategic experimentation toward a print transition.

October 3, 2023

Two men place post-it notes on big sheets of paper.

The Lenfest Institute for Journalism is today announcing a new grant opportunity for publishers conducting experiments related to print reduction and digital revenue growth, key pillars of the Institute’s mission to develop solutions for the next era of local journalism.  

As part of its Beyond Print program, the Institute will provide a limited number of grants, of up to $25,000 each, to support strategic experimentation that will result in transformative change toward a print transition. Beyond Print was launched in 2022 in partnership with the American Press Institute and has supported publishers with a broad array of learning and strategic planning programs as they transition away from print-centric revenue models to a sustainable digital future.  

To be eligible for this grant opportunity, projects must explicitly address at least one of the following eight elements of a print transition plan:  

  • revenue transition from print to digital 
  • newsroom content, capabilities, and workflows  
  • print and digital product development and user experience  
  • technology system evolution 
  • customer service planning 
  • customer communication planning 
  • manufacturing and distribution planning and contracts  
  • financial modeling 

Grantees will be required to share their results and learnings in a forthcoming Beyond Print Toolkit so that these lessons can be applied by others in the news industry.  

Beyond Print is currently funded by an anchor donation from the Andrew and Julie Klingenstein Family Fund. 

Four historically print publishers participated in an initial Beyond Print program to test new ideas to create and expand sustainable digital models tailored for their organization and audiences. More than 20 other publications joined them in June 2023 for the first-ever Beyond Print convening.  

Organizations who meet the eligibility requirements listed below may apply through the Institute’s Fluxx grantee portalThe deadline to apply is Friday, November 10 at 11:59 p.m. ET

The team from The Lenfest Institute will hold a virtual information session for interested applicants on Wednesday, October 25 at Noon ET / 9 a.m. PT. Anyone is welcome to attend to learn more about the grant process and ask specific questions about proposed projects. The session will be recorded, and pre-registration is required. Register here.  

Grant guidelines

  • U.S.-based local news organizations of all kinds that currently distribute a print product may apply regardless of business model or print frequency. 
  • Projects must explicitly address at least one of the eight elements of a print transition plan with the ultimate goal of reducing print frequency. 
  • Top leadership within the organization must sign off on the proposed project and be fully committed to efforts to reduce print frequency. 
  • Funding amounts will range from $10,000 to $25,000.  
  • The grant term will run from January 2024 through June 2024.  
  • Organizations that already received funding for their Beyond Print work during the initial cohort OR through API’s implementation grant program are not eligible to apply. 
  • Funds may not be used for the continuation of existing projects or programs. 

Applications will be reviewed based on the following criteria:  

  • Alignment with the program’s overall goals and funding priorities 
  • Clear explanation of project plan, goals, and centering of audience/community needs 
  • A spirit of creativity or innovation around reducing print frequency 
  • Likelihood that this project will be transformative and significantly impact the organization’s path to sustainability 
  • The desire or ability for the project to be adapted or replicated by other news organizations. 
  • Reasonable ability to achieve the proposed project (budget, management, leadership buy-in) 

How to apply

To submit an application through Fluxx, please click here and create an account. An administrator will validate your account within 48 hours via email and send you a link to create a password for your grantee account. You can then access the grantee portal, where you will see a list of open application. Click the “Apply Now” button under the grant opportunity labeled “Beyond Print Implementation Grants.” Please reach out to [email protected] with any questions.   

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