The Knight News Challenge accelerates media innovation by funding breakthrough ideas in news and information. Winners receive a share of $5 million in funding and support from Knight’s network of influential peers and advisors to help advance their ideas. The first round of 2013, which opens in February, will invite innovators from all disciplines to focus on tools for open government. In 2012, three challenge rounds, each focused on an emerging trend, drew more than 2,500 entries.
Challenge 1 - on NETWORKS: Winners were announced June 18.
Challenge 2 - on DATA: Winners were announced Sept. 20.
Challenge 3 – on MOBILE: Winners were announced Jan. 17.
Anyone, anywhere can apply for the challenge - whether for-profit start-ups or non-profit ventures. For more information on a variety of topics - from guidelines for for-profits, on intellectual property licensing, open source software and more - visit our FAQ.
1. What is your project? [1 sentence]
Project Interfaith - an organization that grows understanding, respect, and relationships among people of all faiths, beliefs, & cultures - will develop a mobile application to serve as an easy-to-use educational index and etiquette guide for the world’s religions complete with a religious terms glossary; pronunciation audio/video files for greetings and terminology; search features that allow the user to find religious and cultural diversity information based on religion, geographical location, or date; calendar of religious and cultural observances; quick facts pages; and cultural customs slideshow to educate professionals about their clients’ religious and cultural diversity and empower them to respectfully interact with people of different religions and cultures.
2. How will your project use mobile tools and approaches? [2 sentences]
Working with the iOS developer Jiffy Software, the mobile application will be branded, programmed and developed for iPhone, iPad and, later, Android devices. Jiffy Software, OBI Creative, Project Interfaith, and cloud source group, utest.com, will work together during the design, coding, testing and launch stages of app development.
3. Who will use it and why? [1 sentence]
While open to all, this application will be particularly useful to on-the-go individuals - such as business professionals, social service providers, educators, or international students - who regularly interact with people of diverse cultures and beliefs and who need information about cultural and religious observances and customs including greetings and socially appropriate interactions.
4. Please list three ways they would learn about your project. [no sentence limit]
Individuals will be made aware of and encouraged to install the Project Interfaith mobile application in the following ways:
-Social media outlets will regularly promote the application to the growing number of Project Interfaith followers, which currently number 2,740 E-newsletter subscribers, 1,400 Twitter followers and 2,100 users who “Like” the organization on Facebook. Project Interfaith also will personally reach out to its international network of businesses, educators, and organizations advancing interreligious and intercultural understanding to make them aware of this resource and to invite them to share the app with their constituents.
-Project Interfaith will advertise the app on its own website and to the growing number of participants who attend its face-to-face programs. The Project Interfaith website attracted over 9,000 visitors in fiscal year 2012 from 100 countries. In-person programs reached 2,379 individuals in fiscal year 2012 and a total of over 23,000 people since the organization’s founding in 2005.
-Project Interfaith will create a Google Ad campaign for the mobile app. Using the Google Adwords keyword tool, Project Interfaith will determine the most highly searched, related terms concerning information on various religions, such as “interfaith”, “religion information”, or specific denominations, and will feature such keywords in the ad’s description and title so that it will be a visible, readily available resource to users in search of such a tool.
Other option: (only need 3)
-Project Interfaith will advertise the application on RavelUnravel.com, the organization’s newest online initiative featuring video interviews of people around the world about their own religious & cultural traditions, which is expanding at a rapid rate and has already attracted over 3,300 viewers from 78 countries since its launch in May 2012.
5. What connections have you made, or will you make, with others [communities, organizations or networks] about your project? [2 sentences]
In June 2012, Project Interfaith met with representatives of OBI Creative, an Omaha-based marketing firm, and Jiffy Software, a mobile software development company that has designed over 2,000 mobile applications for iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch) and Android mobile operating systems, to discuss the content and features of the Project Interfaith mobile application. Project Interfaith continues to identify and seek funding from Technology-oriented foundations and organizations such as the Millard Foundation, Tricycle, Inc. Technology Grant, and the Motorola Mobility Foundation Empowerment Grant.
6. What part of the project have you already built? [1-2 sentences, feel free to include links]
Project Interfaith and OBI Creative have already begun the process of creating the application framework with Jiffy Software. Though multimedia options such as audio and video files and photographs have not yet been created, much of the content for the application is already prepared and featured on ProjectInterfaith.com’s resource pages which provide educational information for 15 world religions including their histories, major figures, basic tenets, holidays, practices, glossary of terms, and more (http://projectinterfaith.org/page/ravelunravel-resources).
7. What does success for your project look like? [1-2 sentences]
User feedback through an optional evaluation included in the app will let Project Interfaith know if the mobile application succeeded in educating people about and empowering them to respectfully interact with different religions and cultures. Success will also be measured by the number of mobile app uploads as each upload will serve as additional revenue for Project Interfaith that in turn will help to increase our program outreach and ability to serve the community as a leader and resource on religious and cultural diversity.
8. What resources do you need to succeed? [1-2 sentences]
Because Project Interfaith is in the early stages of its mobile application development, funding is required in order to design and code not only the basic framework for the program but also additional features that can be created on the front-end and easily activated as additional funding is obtained. OBI Creative’s marketing experience and Jiffy Software’s mobile application development experience will be essential to developing an app that is seen as not only user-friendly and fun to use, but also a credible resource users will continually return to for religious and cultural diversity information.
Please list who is on your team:
Beth Katz – Executive Director
Tom Laird – Director of Development and Communications
PO Box 6037
Omaha, NE 68106
Mary Anne O’Brien – CEO and Founder
Betsy Garbacz Rawson – Marketing and Communication Strategist
Jeff Price – Business Development Coordinator
2920 Farnam Street
Omaha, NE 68131
4720 Kingsway Avenue, 26th Floor
Burnaby, British Columbia V5H 4N2
Expected number of months to complete project: (Jiffy: 7-8 week design)
Estimated Project Cost: $20,000
Name: Tom Laird
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Organization [if applicable]: Project Interfaith
City: Omaha, NE
Country: United States
How did you learn about the contest? FoundationCenter.org’s e-mailing list.