Mission Local, a news lab for everyone

  In the fall of 2008, Berkeley J-school students and faculty created a number of hyperlocal sites including Mission Local.  The idea was to cover local, city, state and national issues from the vantage point of one community, to train graduate students across platforms, to experiment with how the news is covered and to engage the communities. Since launching in October 2008, Mission Local has become a news lab for the Mission District, San Francisco’s oldest neighborhood and a mixture of immigrants, techies, artists and everyone else.  The local project has meant creating Mission Tour, a local history app for the iPhone, a Zine, My Mission, and Mission Possible, a series of maps.  Yes, we’re a UC Berkeley project, but our doors are open to all and we’ve had everyone from middle school student to app developers come through and add to the mix. Interested? Come and visit us at 400 Treat Avenue or e-mail us at  

India Reporting Project

India is the world’s largest democracy and one changing at an unprecedented pace.  The country's  vast expanse and complex society offers our students some of their most demanding reporting.  To assist them, the Chatterjee Charitable Foundation funds an Indian journalist to give students a crash course in India, preparing them for a 10-day reporting trip.  Their pieces have appeared in the Washington Post, Newsday, the Atlantic, Frontline and numerous other media.  Click here to view the reporting and to read more about the project.  Photo: Portrait of an orphaned girl.  Mimi Chakarova, Kashmir, June 2003

Central America Reporting Project

(Site under development.) For more than a decade, the small countries of El Salvador, Nicaragua and Guatemala were Ground Zero for the Cold War and the Reagan Administration spent billions of dollars to prevent a second Cuba.  More than 300,000 died in those wars.  Officially, the U.S. backed governments or insurgents won, but what became of the new democracies?  The Central American Reporting Project attempts to answer that question.   Photo:  Gang Member, San Salvador, 2005. Mimi Chakarova

Art History

*/ Looking Closely: What a 14th-Century Ivory has been Waiting to Tell Us,    Gothic Ivories: Content and Context, July 2014, London, a conference organized by the British Museum and the Courtauld Gothic Ivories Project   This project would not have been completed without the guidance of Dr. Mellie Neydenova-Slade and Dr. John Lowden     grandissonivory1.jpg