The National Press Club Journalism Institute, the National Press Foundation, and the RAND corporation are offering journalists a new way to prepare for the unexpected in Election 2020 news: Gaming your coverage plan.
Registration is open for this free program, which will be held on Friday, Sept. 25 from 5-7 p.m. ET.
RAND gamemaster David A. Shlapak will present players with scenarios based on current and likely events, and each team will make coverage decisions, not knowing what the next roll of the dice will bring.
The game will surface journalists’ assumptions and test decisions as reporters and editors balance competing goals, commit limited resources, and assess tradeoffs. The game’s timeline will begin in September, continue through Election Day, and end on Inauguration Day.
Political journalists will play in teams, and observers will go behind the scenes to eavesdrop on the decision-making by competing groups. The program will conclude with a debrief that ties the game outcomes to coverage decisions you’re about to make.
David A. Shlapak is a senior defense researcher at the RAND Corporation. From 2014 to 2018, Shlapak was a founding co-director of the RAND Center for Gaming, one of six Methods Centers under the Pardee RAND Graduate School. He is a former acting director of the Strategy and Doctrine Program in Project AIR FORCE.
The RAND Corporation is a research organization that develops solutions to public policy challenges to help make communities throughout the world safer and more secure, healthier and more prosperous.
The National Press Foundation is a 501(c)(3) whose primary mission is educating journalists on the complex issues of the day and training them on the latest digital tools. The foundation recognizes and encourages excellence in journalism through its awards and programs.
The National Press Club Journalism Institute promotes an engaged global citizenry through an independent and free press, and equips journalists with skills and standards to inform the public in ways that inspire civic engagement. As the non-profit of the National Press Club, the Institute serves as a beacon for journalism in the public interest. About NPCJI’s programs: The National Press Club Journalism Institute has added weekly programming, a daily newsletter, a daily writing group, and other support for journalists since March, and has waived fees for everything due to the COVID-19 pandemic at a savings of more than $52,000 to participants like you. If you value what you’ve been learning from the Institute during this time, please consider a donation of $5, $10, or whatever you can contribute. This program is one of an ongoing series of free conversations.