Jarvis gets McArthur Grant; this is good

My old friend and mentor Jeff Jarvis has received a MacArthur Foundation grant at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism to start the News Innovation Project, a program that will focus on exploring how citizen journalism fits into our digital world.
Jeff says that the first work will be to hold a meeting this fall to gather practitioners and best practices in networked journalism — cooperative, pro-am efforts to gather and share news–and that a web site and more info sharing will follow.
In the past 18 months, as I’ve worked at Yahoo Personals, I’ve moved farther away from citizen journalism in my daily life, but user generated content, news and information sharing tools have always been a huge part of my focus and interest. I remain particularly interested in how all these resources can fit together–along with calendars, listings, feeds, badges, widgets and so on, at the local level where–as Jeff and I learned way back in the day at New Jersey Online–user-generated content around local events and resources is one of the hardest things to commoditize.
This is a very polite way of saying that while I may not have any business reasons to attend–or be invited to–Jeff’s meeting in NY this fall, I sure as hell would love to have an excuse to be there because the learnings from those sessions should carry back into everything people are doing on the Net.