Insights, tools and research to advance journalism

Reports

API’s invests significant time, thought and resources in producing research that we believe is definitive and useful. We address the most-pressing issues facing news organizations — understanding audiences, creating business models, and internal transformation — in a way that helps the leaders and the strivers in those organizations form plans and take action.

This page collects all of API’s in-depth research of several forms — white papers that share insights from in-person events, strategy studies that help publishers form their own plans, and survey research analysis that helps publishers serve the needs of modern news audiences.

‘My’ media versus ‘the’ media: Trust in news depends on which news media you mean

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research For years, studies have shown Americans’ trust in the news media is steadily declining. In recent months, the rise of so-called fake news and the rhetoric of President Donald […]

How news partnerships work: Commercial and nonprofit newsrooms can work together to benefit and change journalism

What is a successful partnership? In the last decade, nonprofit news organizations have emerged with a model that depends on creative partnerships. At the same time, most commercial newsrooms have seen deep cuts to staffing and resources, leaving them in search of ways to sustain the quality and depth of their journalism. These forces are […]

Paying for news: Why people subscribe and what it says about the future of journalism

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research Introduction The future of journalism will increasingly depend on consumers paying for the news directly, as content distributors like Facebook and Google take up the lion’s share of digital […]

The future of digital advertising: Designs for mobile screens may be more effective

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research Overview As the news industry searches for new revenue models to finance journalism online, a new research study suggests that some sorts of digital advertising are demonstrably more effective […]

General election news coverage: What engages audiences down the ballot

  Summary As Election Day approaches, more people seek news and information about politics. To understand the habits of news audiences in the run-up to the election, we analyzed what was being covered in reporting about down-ballot, non-presidential races for U.S. Congress, governor, and local offices in the lead-up to the 2016 general election. The […]

The Future of Fact-Checking: Moving ahead in political accountability journalism

Overview These should be heady days for fact-checkers. In an industry that has not otherwise been enjoying robust growth, the number of media outlets focused on fact-checking and political accountability reporting has grown rapidly. Bolstered by new partnerships and technology, demonstrably more fact-checking took place during the 2016 election than in previous elections. Media organizations […]

‘Who shared it?’: How Americans decide what news to trust on social media

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research Introduction When Americans encounter news on social media, how much they trust the content is determined less by who creates the news than by who shares it, according to […]

Break Form: Making stories with and for the people

Introduction and Actions: Localore: Finding America Editor’s Note: This report captures the impact and lessons from Localore: Finding America — an independent public media initiative comprising 15 teams embedded for nine months at forward-moving public radio and television stations across the U.S. to invent new storytelling models with citizens. The report was produced by the […]

7 characteristics of effective accountability journalists

No matter what topics they cover, many journalists hold people and institutions responsible for their words and actions. This “accountability journalism,” whether it is political fact-checking, investigations or other forms of reporting, must still engage readers and impact audiences to be effective. All journalism, in the end, should strive to make the significant interesting. Through […]

Distributed content: The best ways to build sustainable platform strategies

The potential audience for news has never been larger, yet reaching that audience directly has never been more of a challenge for publishers. Thanks to the explosion of social media and smartphones, people are consuming content constantly, but they are far less likely to discover or consume that content on publisher websites. Websites will, of […]

Need to Know newsletter

The smart way to start your day

Each morning we scour the web for fresh useful insights in our Need to Know newsletter. Sign up below.

Featured topics

Go deeper on…

Dive deep on everything we produce about these key topics.

Strategy Studies

The best practices for innovation within news organizations

This Strategy Study presents examples and insights about journalism innovation, offering actionable advice and methods to move your journalism and business forward.