Knight News Challenge

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.

National Council on Aging

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1. What is your project? [1 sentence]

Create a mobile version of a weekly action plan activity, which is the foundation of our well-tested and highly successful chronic disease (like diabetes, heart-disease, arthritis) self-management programs.

2. How will your project use mobile tools and approaches? [2 sentences]

By creating an easy to use and just-in-time mobile application for those suffering from chronic disease, we hope to help improve the lives of the seven out of every 10 people who die from these diseases.  

3. Who will use it and why? [1 sentence]

Half of all adults live with one or more chronic disease, this successful and tested tool will help them identify small, measurable steps to improving their life.

4. Please list three ways they would learn about your project.

1) Any of our online and in-person chronic disease self-management workshop participants will be encouraged to download the application to continue developing action plans past the duration of their six-week workshop.

2) Our self-management marketing and recruitment website ( will highlight the action plan application.

3) Through the aging services network, traditional and social media campaigns, and through the rest of the NCOA web and email properties (315,000 visits monthly and 130,000 emails weekly)

5. What connections have you made, or will you make, with others [communities, organizations or networks] about your project? [2 sentences]

As a non-profit organization, we work with a number of foundations, government agencies, health plans and other for-profit health care organizations, as well as a number and variety of community-based partners to disseminate all of our programs and services, including, but not limited to our suite of online chronic disease self-management programs.  We leverage our partnerships to create the greatest social impact.

6. What part of the project have you already built? [1-2 sentences, feel free to include links]

The weekly action plan is already a password protected, web-based tool embedded in the online version of the chronic disease self-management program. Our promotion website is located at

7. What does success for your project look like? [1-2 sentences]

In less than 3 years our organization has enrolled over 100,000 participants in chronic disease self-management programs.  These workshops are a six-week commitment and therefore we are confident that a downloadable application will aid in participants’ continued success as well as reach hundreds of thousands of new individuals affected by a chronic disease.

8. What resources do you need to succeed? [1-2 sentences]

We require funding to hire mobile developers to build out the app for iPad, iPhone and Android in addition to ongoing support funds for application upgrades and maintenance costs. We also would look to the Knight Foundation for guidance in promotion within their network.

Additional details:
Please list who is on your team: Staff of the National Council on Aging (
Expected number of months to complete project: 8- 10
Estimated Project Cost: unknown as developer has not be identified
Name: Tracy Compton and Julie Kosteas
Twitter: @NCOAging
Email address:;
Organization [if applicable]: National Council on Aging
City: Washington, DC
Country: USA
How did you learn about the contest? Online listserv targeting women in computing, DC Web Women