Library Special Collections Participates in Knight Foundation News Challenge

This summer, the Knight Foundation posted an open call for ideas and asked, “How might we leverage libraries as a platform to build more knowledgeable communities?” PSU Library Special Collections joined more than 600 other people and organizations to propose possible solutions.

“Let Knowledge Serve the City: Using Special Collections to Build a Holistic Cycle of Community Inspiration, Creation, and Dissemination” calls for 3 year-long collaborative resident innovators, application open to all, to focus on our unique historical collections as inspiration to build new digital resources, initiate and lead public dialogue, and develop innovative models for engagement, learning, and community documentation.

The proposal says in part:

We believe that the records of our shared history are not part of the past but are vital and living resources that can actively contribute to a thriving and forward-thinking community. Unfortunately, historical collections can inadvertently become hidden or forgotten from lack of funding and limited accessibility; significant community records can be neglected or lost as over-burdened archivists struggle to find, preserve, and make visible all that they should. This project seeks to address this problem by cultivating a broader pool of stakeholders and agents for gathering, preserving and sharing our history and by creating new connections and new models that reach more people and demonstrate the relevance of these unique materials to all arenas of inquiry, creativity and action.

The News Challenge is now in the feedback phase, and the public is invited to review and comment on proposals. The winners, to be announced January 30, 2015, will win a share of $2.5 million.