IPDC project priority: Promoting Freedom of Expression and Media Pluralism

Southeast Asia is represented by a diverse range of countries in terms of politics, economy and culture, and a clear divergence in terms of respect and appreciation for fundamental human rights. The aforementioned diversity is also reflected in the media situation of the individual countries of the region, as found by respected international press freedom monitors. The 2010 press freedom index by Reporters Without Borders placed most of the countries in the region at the bottom quarter of the 178 countries assessed, while Freedom House concluded in its Freedom of the Press 2011 survey that...

In the 2011 Assessment of Media Development in Timor-Leste which is based on the UNESCO Media Development Indicators (MDI), media self-regulation is one of the prominent elements lacking in the current Timor-Leste media landscape. A healthy voluntary self-regulatory system within the media landscape is one of the cornerstones of freedom of expression, press freedom, and democratic governance. It is also the best means of guaranteeing high ethical and professional standards in journalism. Currently, there is no outlet to handle media complaints or to provide redress against unprofessional...

The merits of Public Service Broadcasting institutions are widely and vigorously debated but guidance and knowledge is needed for broadcasters on how they should respond to creating Public Service Broadcasting for public interest with the convergence of new technologies. In this era it is important that broadcasters understand how PSB can be defined and redefined to perform its functions effectively. In May 2012 broadcasters from across South-Asia will gather in Bangkok, Thailand, for the Asian Media Summit. This provides an excellent opportunity to partner with AIBD, the host organization...

The Caribbean region is exposed to a wide range of natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes, earthquakes and volcanoes. It has been described as the second most hazard-prone region in the world. Various factors render Caribbean populations extremely vulnerable to disasters. These factors include socioeconomic issues such as high population density and high levels of poverty.
 
The Commonwealth Broadcasting Association (CBA) is the largest global association of public service broadcasters and the Caribbean Broadcasting Union is the regional broadcasters’ union. The provision...

Despite the progress in the regulatory framework for freedom of information, Uruguay still has room for improvement as far as the treatment of the self-regulatory and ethical aspects of journalism and media activity is concerned. The objective of this project is to create a space for debate and reflection on the need for an ethical reference framework to be adopted by journalists and the media, as well as on the institutions' need to deal in a transparent way with complaints that may come from media users. As noted by UNESCO in the course of the discussion on 'Journalism Ethics and Self-...

Drug trafficking has become one of the main causes of problems relating to security, violence, corruption and weakening of democracy in the countries of Latin America. Fear of reporting on the topic continues to spread among journalists however, with increasingly fewer reporters venturing to cover drug trafficking and organized crime issues because they fear for their lives.
 
This project therefore is aimed at providing journalists who cover drug trafficking and organized crime, working along Colombia’s border zones, with training on self-protection mechanisms, complemented by...

Access to information is of paramount importance in enabling economic, political and social development of Central Asian countries in their fight against corruption. In recent years, developments have been made in this area, with the passing of laws on Access to Information in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan occurring in 2006 and 2008 respectively, and discussions for a law on Access to Public Information in Kazakhstan being initiated in 2010. In spite of this progress however, Central Asian mass media continue to encounter problems in accessing information, with the 'Adil Soz' Foundation...

In spite of India's strong constitution and judicial rulings in favour of press freedom, journalists in insurgency-affected parts of the country are often intimidated into silence by the special measures put in place by local administrations in these areas. They are frequently deterred from reporting on common issues of governance and unsure of the permissible limits of free reporting thus resulting in an inability to reflect a wide range of opinions and perceptions in their work. This project aims to address the situation by providing training workshops to 60 journalists from insurgency-...

Although major advances have been made in increasing media diversity and pluralism in Eastern Africa, some countries in the region continue to be subject to repressive media laws and policies curtailing media freedom. Such laws and policies create a restrictive environment for media practitioners, and impinge media development in the long term. Therefore a progressive campaign for just and democratic media laws is necessary if Eastern Africa is to make a successful transition to democracy. This project will assist in developing a network of media practitioners campaigning for media law...

Despite large numbers of women occupying positions in the Colombian media today, the gender divide is ever-present with female media professionals regularly subject to discrimination. At fault is a lack of interest concerning gender issues combined with a lack of organized training. For these reasons, the Colombian Federation of Journalists created FECOLPER Women's Network, an internet network created specifically for the exchange of information about gender and freedom of the press. This project aims to strengthen the institutional capacity of FECOLPER by applying UNESCO's Guidelines on...

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