CommonWealth Beacon is the trusted source for in-depth news, analysis, and original reporting on policy, politics, and civic life in Massachusetts.

We are nonprofit, non-partisan, and make our work available for free to all, with no paywall.


CommonWealth Beacon’s mission is to contribute to a more inclusive and vibrant civic culture that makes our government more responsive and effective by providing rigorous coverage of important issues affecting life in Massachusetts.


CommonWealth Beacon is published by the Massachusetts Institute for a New Commonwealth, or MassINC, a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting economic inclusion and civic vitality through the provision of unbiased research and journalism and respectful civic dialogue. MassINC conducts policy related research, convenes conversations, conducts public opinion surveys through a for-profit polling subsidiary, and publishes CommonWealth Beacon

MassINC was founded in 1996 by a group of civic leaders seeking to provide the public and policy makers with the research, evidence and journalism they need to make informed decisions about public policy. Tripp Jones served as the first CEO of MassINC and Publisher of CommonWealth, which started as a quarterly public policy-focused print magazine. Bruce Mohl has served as editor since 2008 and in 2018, CommonWealth transitioned to an online-only publication, with a daily e-newsletter.

In 2021, we hired Charlie Kravetz as a consultant to work with our staff and board to build a vision, strategy and funding base for a larger, more sustainable and more impactful civic news organization. These efforts culminated in 2023 when CommonWealth magazine transitioned to CommonWealth Beacon with the goal of expanding our coverage of state and local government, public policy, and politics in Massachusetts.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion 

CommonWealth Beacon embraces a commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging practices that enable us to produce journalism that reflects a full and accurate representation of voices and perspectives. Our commitment extends to how we operate as an organization and to the news we publish. We are committed to creating and sustaining a workplace culture that is welcoming to all and enables each staff person to flourish. We believe this approach produces more comprehensive, accurate and relevant journalism that serves the public. 

Our approach is rooted in several key practices: 

  • Build an inclusive team: We seek to build a team that reflects the full diversity of our state. This includes recruiting staff members, free lancers, op-ed contributors, Board members, and members for our Editorial Advisory Committee from diverse backgrounds who are reflective of the communities we serve. 
  • Foster a positive workplace culture: We are intentional about building a workplace culture with open dialogue and where everyone feels comfortable expressing their ideas. We seek to create an environment where everyone feels welcomed and seen and where staff members can grow professionally and personally.  
  • Produce journalism that is sensitive and respectful: We work to ensure that our stories demonstrate sensitivity and respect, avoiding stereotypes and bias. We recognize the history and legacy of racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination and the continued disparities in our society. We strive to put our stories in context. We seek out diverse voices from all impacted communities and across the ideological spectrum.   
  • Elevate diverse voices: On our opinion page, we work hard to ensure a full diversity of voices are represented from different communities and points of view.  We provide a platform for new leaders and voices to participate in our civic conversations and seek to create a forum for respectful dialogue and disagreement.  
  • Engage in continual learning and improvement: We acknowledge that our DEI journey is ongoing and incomplete, and we remain committed to a culture of learning, transparency, trust, and respect along the way. We offer DEI training and workshops to our staff and encourage regular informal discussions within the newsroom about how to advance our practice and make continuous improvement. We also work hard to learn from our mistakes through honest self-reflection and conversation. 

Awards & Honors

New England Better News Competition 

New England Newspaper & Press Association

1st Place


Michael Jonas

Fitchburg pinning revival hopes on arts and culture 

1st Place


Shira Schoenberg 

For pediatric mental health patients, days stuck in the ER 

1st Place


Shira Schoenberg 

2017 birth control provision fell through the cracks 

1st Place


Bruce Mohl 

Somerset struggles amid slow rollout of offshore wind 

2nd Place

Local Community Profile

Shira Schoenberg

Sen. John Velis faces alcoholism one day at a time 

3rd Place

Local Election Coverage

Bruce Mohl

The bureaucrat vs. the GOP star