Applications open in March for $20K grants to upgrade CMS, boost sustainability

Grants of up to $20,000 to support newsroom technology improvements soon will be made available by the Knight Foundation, for the second year in a row.

Applications open March 1 and will be accepted through March 31; the application will be posted on, and we’ll be sure to update here when available. You can also sign up to receive email updates about the process. To be eligible, a newsroom must be in the United States and either a:

  • nonprofit
  • newsroom led by or serving people of color
  • newsroom working to inform historically underserved audiences.

The one-time grants to 26 successful applicants will let them cover the expenses of adopting and managing a tech solution to improve sustainability.

Knight is working with the News Revenue Hub and News Catalyst to help prospective grantees familiarize themselves with the grant requirements and application process. Two webinars are set for this week, Wednesday and Thursday, and they will be recorded for those who can’t make it live.

From the Knight announcement:

Having a well-functioning content management system (CMS) is a fundamental building block for any publisher’s long-term strategy for growth and development. A good CMS isn’t just a publishing tool for your website. It should also allow you to manage and distribute content to other digital platforms such as e-newsletters, Alexas or smart watches, and capture detailed analytics to help publishers make business decisions.

Of the 24 grant recipients in last year’s first round, 13 chose the Newspack platform by WordPress, and another eight are implementing a custom WordPress installation. The others were one each on Drupal, Expression Engine and Joomla.