The Journalism and Media Lab (JAMLAB) is a project of Wits Journalism and the Joburg Centre for Software Engineering in partnership with Ryerson University, Toronto and Journalists for Human Rights. The project aims to support more and better innovation in journalism and media in Africa.
But innovation is difficult, risky and often ends in failure. Journalism and media faces many challenges on the continent and in SA in particular. There is really little alternative but to innovate. And this is the gap where JAMLAB can play a role — providing innovators with information, inspiration and networks to support more, and more successful, innovation.
There are two ways the project is aiming to contribute:
- The first way is through the online magazine and other digital platforms which will showcase innovations and innovators, share experiences of using new technologies and tools and provide access to research . The goal is not only to publish stories, but to hopefully contribute to growing a network of innovators and to help build a ‘community of practice’ of media makers that can support each other by sharing advice and experience.
- The second way is through an ‘accelerator’ programme. JAMLAB established a six month accelerator programme at the new Tshimologong Digital Innovation Zone in Braamfontein. The six teams on the programme attend a ‘lean start up’ course, receive coaching and mentoring from some of the best innovators on the continent; as well as receive access to investors and funders.