FocusWest is committed to covering significant public affairs issues in the intermountain west, and to bringing together local and regional perspectives on those issues. The project aims to deepen and enhance understanding of the issues it covers by melding the talents and resources of Idaho Public Television, KNPB Channel 5 - Reno, and Wyoming Public Television. Each featured production combines the unique strengths of television, print, and new digital media to encourage greater understanding of, and involvement in, regional civic affairs.
Our first production, WESTERN DIVIDE, aired December 13, 2001. This was followed by programs which addressed other western issues such as the control of water (DRAINING THE WEST?), various perspectives on the impact of Latino population growth in our region (LOS AMERICANOS), and even rural broadband initiatives. Let us know what other topics you’d recommend we take on.
The rationale behind our request for Ford Foundation funding for this effort was that new digital media, including Digital Television (DTV), would enable new and more effective ways to address public affairs information needs, particularly in the rural west. Typically there are fewer choices for rural citizens to find public affairs information -- fewer newspapers, less local broadcast news, few regional magazines, and less convenient ties to the Internet. Public television’s DTV services may be the digital media that reaches even the most rural residents, and most of the inter-mountain west. How should we, as local public television public affairs producers use DTV to best serve these viewers?
The FocusWest project is our attempt to experiment with a variety of ways that television, the web, and DVD can work together to offer a richer, more versatile, user-directed public affairs resource. For each topic we cover we hope to try out different capabilities of the emerging digital technologies that triangulate and approximate the future "DTV experience." View an overview of the project. We’d love to hear from you on what seems to work well for you, or what you wish we would have done instead.
For information on how to view the streaming media clips on FocusWest, visit our streaming media Q & A page.
Reno Public Television, KNPB-TV:
Wyoming Public Television:
Idaho Public Television:
Focus West Project Director: Gens Johnson
Frank Roberts, GIS Manager, Coeur d’Alene Tribe
Greg Lakes, Editor
Lily Wai, Project Director
Dr. Georgia Johnson, University of Idaho
Foundation for Water and Energy Education
Enrique Martinez, Producer/host of "Panorama" on KESQ-TV in
Palm Desert, CA.
Andrade's Mexican Restaurant, Boise
Carpenter's Floral, Boise
Parkridge Elementary, Nampa
The Antler Motel, Jackson
The Red Oak Grille, Jackson
Teton County School District No. 1, Jackson
Idaho State Board of Education, KNPB-TV/Reno Public Television, KCWC-TV/Wyoming