Pula Talks Generative Journalism on Radio Show

Pula Talks Generative Journalism on Radio Show

Dr. Katherine Loflin in conversation with Peter Pula

The relationship between generative journalism and the revitalization of our communities was the spotlight of conversation when Axiom News founder and CEO Peter Pula spoke with Dr. Katherine Loflin on March 22 as a guest on her radio show Place Matters.

Katherine is an expert on the subject of placemaking, helping cities discover what it is a about a community that makes people want to live there, while highlighting the economic benefits of creating places residents are attached to. 

With a background in journalism, she understands clearly the influence of media on the connections people have to their communities, and is all-too aware of the fact that most media is focused on deficits with the odd “fluff” story tossed into the mix to offer some semblance of balance.

The foundation of her approach to placemaking is entirely strengths-based, and for this reason she was instantly drawn to Axiom News when she came across the organization during a sustainable communities conference in Ottawa in early February.

So how does a strengths-based approach to journalism catalyze change in our communities and organizations, and how does this approach differ from traditional media that tends to focus on the idea that “if it bleeds, it leads?”

When Katherine poses these questions, Peter explains that fluff journalism is, for the most part, a distraction while negative, deficit-based news can at its worst be a destructive force.

“Neither of them produces anything new,” he explains, “so we favour this idea of Generative Journalism because what we’re looking for is to spark something new.”

Finding a good story is finding where the energy is, and Peter points out that arousing an emotional reaction in consumers of media through negative stories may be easy, but there is no benefit to be found in it; there is little available to inspire constructive transformation.

“Generative Journalism from a strengths-based perspective feeds a different kind of energy and inspires a different emotional reaction that’s quite contagious and helps engage entire systems,” he explains.

“We all have to be placemakers, and I think that’s one of the core elements of Generative Journalism; we assume that each person is the person to make the community into what they want to make it into,” Peter says.

“It’s really hard to do that if you’re going to be critical skeptical and de-generative, whereas is you’re looking for gifts and possibilities and you’re working into those things then you’re going to be more successful in bringing those gifts and possibilities into reality.”

Click here to hear the full conversation between Katherine Loflin and Peter Pula.

Writer Bio

Kristian Partington's picture
Kristian Partington

Kristian says he's been a storyteller all his life, and from an early age he thrived in the creative process of putting pen to paper. With Axiom News, he says he finds as much power in the conversations he has with sources for stories as he finds in the stories themselves.

"It's the questions we ask that catalyze great conversations, and more often than not I come away from the conversation somewhat improved. I like to think the person on the other end feels the same way. From that point on, the stories sort of write themselves."

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