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Associated Press will try to tackle election conspiracy theories

Major foundations will support research efforts

The Associated Press announced today it will inject additional resources into covering democracy in the U.S. with the goal of helping an increasingly polarized public better understand their government.

With philanthropic support from several organizations, AP aims to improve civic literacy and combat misinformation by bolstering its explanatory journalism and providing information and tools to local newsrooms to aid their coverage. AP will also deepen its reporting on the impact of elections and election-related policy on communities of color.

The effort, supported by Lilly Endowment Inc., Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, is focused on providing solutions-based journalism rather than merely highlighting problems and extreme voices.

Support from Lilly Endowment will enable AP to make clear the workings of U.S. election systems, institutions and processes. This work builds on the extensive explanatory journalism AP provided before, during and after the 2022 midterm elections.

AP will also conduct research into news practices that polarize audiences and identify newsroom solutions to both bridge societal divides and engage weary citizens.

With an eye to the 2024 U.S. presidential election, AP added to its growing democracy team a reporter dedicated to covering the intersection of race and voting, with support from the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation. The beat bolsters efforts to put people whose voting rights and political representation are at risk at the center of coverage. Journalism Funding Partners is the fiscal sponsor of the Logan grant.

Additionally, with support from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, AP will expand coverage of local races in key states and help local newsrooms strengthen their democracy coverage by providing localization guides that offer tools, ideas and information sources for local journalists to cover voter polarization and more in their communities.

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