Giving Compass' Take:

• The Knight Foundation is investing $50 million on research to understand how technology and the digital age are impacting the future of democracy. 

• Are there other funders in the space investing in digital tech for democracy? What are the potential threats to democracy? 

• Read about how civil society is the immune system for democracy. 

There’s no question that technology has, in many ways, made life more convenient. It’s easier to find information than at any time in history. We can access basic services, connect to friends and family, and make our voices heard with the swipe of a finger.

Yet, left unchecked and unquestioned, the digital technology revolution could threaten the future of our democracy.

Solutions are needed, but they must be driven and supported by new ideas, new evidence and new knowledge. This is why Knight is announcing nearly $50 million to help support an emerging field of research around how society is informed in the digital age.

This investment is intended to support the development of knowledge about how digital technology has transformed the conditions of an informed society, and to provide recommendations for improving our ability to produce, distribute and consume reliable, trustworthy information. It includes two distinct approaches.

The first is the creation and acceleration of significant centers of study, each anchored by leading minds already at the forefront of these issues.

The second is the dedication of $11 million for future investments that support policy and legal research addressing major, ongoing debates about the rules that should govern social media and technology companies.

What is clear through the activity supported by these investments is that a burgeoning new field is already taking shape to meet the demands of the digital age. These centers bring together a variety of disciplines to tackle perennial questions in ways that are more responsive to the digital present.

Read the full article about investment in democracy in the digital age by Sam Gill at Medium.