Trust, Polarization and The Media In The Post-Truth Era
A Conversation with Eric Schurenberg, founder of the Alliance for Trust in Media.
About the Event
In today’s polarized, contradictory and fragmented information environment, it can be hard to know what to believe. Public figures promote radically different narratives about events, each amplified by media that the public regards as less and less trustworthy. The truth is out there, but in today’s chaotic media ecosystem, where do you find it?
Join us for a conversation with Eric Schurenberg, the founder of the Alliance for Trust in Media and the former CEO of Inc. and Fast Company. We will explore how changes in technology and in media business models have changed how you receive your news and what individuals can do to seek out the truth.
The event is part of a series that previews a forthcoming (Summer 2024) course at the Graham School on Media, Trust, and the 2024 Elections.
Founder, Alliance for Trust in Media
Eric Schurenberg is a long-time business journalist and media executive, now the founder of the Alliance for Trust in Media, a non-profit organization devoted to building a relationship of trust and recognition between journalists and their audiences. The Alliance partners with newsrooms around the country to research strategies that help professional journalists build trust with audiences and shares the results at live events and on the Alliance website. The Alliance also teaches media literacy skills at companies whose leaders understand that learning what to believe in today’s information environment is as much an element of workforce well-being as retirement planning or health and wellness. The Alliance is also home to In Reality, the unique podcast about truth, disinformation and the media.
Before starting the Alliance, Eric held several leadership roles in journalism, most recently as the CEO of Mansueto Ventures, the home of the iconic business media brands Inc. and Fast Company. During his four-year tenure as CEO, the publications expanded beyond print and digital into live and digital events, video, podcasts, data, and new recognition programs. Each year of his tenure the company recorded its best annual financial performance to date, culminating in the first year of profitability in the company's 16-year history, in 2021.
For the six years prior, Eric was the president and/or editor-in-chief of Inc. While he was in that role, the magazine was twice a National Magazine Award finalist for general excellence, winning once. Before joining Inc, Eric was the founding editor of CBS MoneyWatch.com and editor-in-chief of BNET.com for CBS Interactive; the sites together won more than a dozen awards for design and journalism during my time there.
Before CBS, Eric was the managing editor of Money Magazine (equivalent to editor-in-chief), where he won the Time Inc. Luce award for service journalism in each of the four years Money was eligible. Other roles inside and out of journalism include deputy editor at Business 2.0, assistant managing editor at Fortune, and vice-president at Goldman Sachs. As a writer, he is the winner of a Loeb Award and a National Magazine Award.
Today, in addition to his role at the Alliance for Trust in Media, Eric is on the board of the book publisher Amplify Publishing Group, where he is also editor-in-chief. He is a strategic adviser to the Leadership and Society Initiative at the University of Chicago and a senior fellow for small business advancement at the US Chamber of Commerce. He enjoys public speaking and has recently held stage at the University of Chicago, Web Summit, Beyond Labels, Collision, and the Dublin Tech Summit, among others. On broadcast platforms, Eric was a regular commentator on Nightly Business Report on PBS and Marketplace Radio on NPR and on CBS MoneyWatch. Eric had his own radio show, You and Your Money, on Westwood One. He has also been a frequent guest on CNBC, CNN, The Today Show and The Early Show.
Before becoming a journalist, Eric spent six years as an actor, playing roles in soap operas and in regional theaters like the Pittsburgh Public Theater, Milwaukee’s Theater East and Philadelphia’s Annenberg Center. For reasons even Eric doesn’t quite understand, he was repeatedly cast in the role of a Cockney juvenile delinquent, a peculiar bit of type-casting (he’s from Ohio). Eric mentions it because, well, how many other media executives can make the same claim?
Outside of work, Eric is a private pilot and an enthusiastic club tennis player, who not so long ago helped carry his club’s tennis team to the regional championships for northern California.