American journalism has had an uneasy history with issues of diversity.
The failure of the news media to adequately cover the lives and issues of people of color has been widely discussed and documented in research studies, books and articles over the past 60 years. This growing body of literature contains a wealth of information about the state of diversity within the news media – information that is of immense value to news leaders who make policy decisions in newsrooms but to whom much of this material was unknown or not easily accessible.
The UNITY/McCormick Foundation Electronic Clearinghouse for News Diversity Research provides more than 400 abstracts that clearly and concisely summarize the available literature on racial and ethnic diversity and journalism. In addition, the database includes research and writings about the role and portrayals of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in journalism.
Here you will find references to everything from the 1947 newsroom diversity report by the Hutchins Commission on Freedom of the Press to a recent book about the growth of the black press in the United States, and much, much more.
The collection references books, articles, scholarly research, professional reviews and journalism organization and foundation reports. It is comprehensive yet narrowly focused on diversity as practiced in newsrooms and as produced by news outlets.
The clearinghouse also was built with the user in mind. The database can be downloaded to your computer, where it can be browsed, sorted, filtered and searched. See How To Use This Site for details on how the database was gathered and how to work with it.
This project is a joint undertaking of UNITY: Journalists of Color, Inc. and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University and was made possible with a generous grant from the McCormick Foundation of Chicago, a national leader in news diversity issues.