Regions: Asia and the Pacific

In 2004, the National University of Laos launched a Bachelor's degree course in Mass Media. Although this was undoubtedly a positive development, the quality of the teaching was hindered by the fact that staff tended to be from a background in Lao Language Literature, with very limited knowledge in the field of journalism. The university has therefore made capacity building of its staff a priority in an effort to raise the standard of education being delivered. This project will build on the work which has already been initiated in this field with UNESCO's support, in order to offer...

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-...

The incidence of natural disasters in Bangladesh has risen in recent years, a trend which many attribute to climate change. With this rise we have also seen a change in attitudes relating to disaster management, with the focus turning increasingly towards risk management as opposed to response and relief. Many believe that the media should also adapt its focus to reflect this change by reporting not only during the post-disaster phase, but also before a disaster occurs, in an effort to educate the public about the risks and hazards and to influence policy changes. This project will deliver...

Access to knowledge and information is of paramount importance in improving the lives of poor and marginalized communities. In Bangladesh, the three primary sources of broadcast media (namely government-owned public service media, private media, and international media) do not effectively cater to the needs and expectations of these marginalized communities since their information sources tend to be centralized and aimed at profit-making. Community radio however, has the proven potential to remedy this situation by giving marginalized rural communities a voice and the opportunity to take...

Many Cambodian newspapers and private radio and TV stations depend on support from political parties. Although press freedom is not guaranteed, the government has declared support for press freedom, publicly praising the benefits to society of an unfettered media. There are no restrictions on satellite dish ownership and foreign radio broadcasts can be received easily from neighboring countries. The purpose of the project is to develop reporting skills in the provincial media in the Kingdom of Cambodia, which has been neglected by the tertiary education sector and other training...

The Press clubs located in the Federally Administrated Tribal Areas (FATA) are under-resourced and underdeveloped. There are seven independent press clubs in the FATA, with the membership of 250+ journalists working with the print and electronic media. In their current form, the press clubs primarily provide a 'journalistic identity' through membership to their members and a platform for the exchange of information. They do not provide a means of broad professional development. Nor is there any formal mechanism for the members of the clubs from different areas to share experiences with...

As the free flow of information and ideas is at the heart of democracy and the cornerstone in human rights, the up-dating of the publication of Freedom of Information: A Comparative Legal Survey in 2008, and its translation into Chinese in 2009 are of great symbolic importance. The dialogue on freedom of information between China and the rest of the world is just beginning and the Chongqing University of China calls on UNESCO to seize an opportunity to capitalize on this unique occasion. This project intends to use the launch of the Chinese translation of the Freedom of Information...

In Lao PDR, mass media has been gradually evolving. An increasing variety of types of media are being used, including newspapers, radio and television. There are both private- and government- owned media. Freedom of expression is guaranteed by the recently endorsed media law. In order to produce quality media, the skills of media professionals need to be developed. In 2004, a Mass Media Bachelor Course was initiated at the Department of Lao Language and Mass Media, Faculty of Letter, National University of Laos. Since its establishment, the Department has been playing a crucial role in...

Television Niue and its private sector counterpart, Kilocutz Productions, are seeking to develop their staff skills to a higher level, in the three separate areas of lighting, sound, and editing. This training will also partly cater for new intakes identified for 2010 onwards. There is a currently a specific lack of development within both organisations beyond basic news and community events coverage. This shortfall currently prevents further development of both parties in other areas of TV production limiting development at a national level. The assistance sought is mid-level rather than...

Bangladesh experiences an urban bias with regard to distribution of economic and social goods, and media is no exception. Only 16 percent of the rural population has access to newspapers, and local newspapers are published in urban areas and therefore do not focus on rural problems. However, the main part of the rural population in Bangladesh is facing some of the largest development problems so far due to climate changes. It is essential to involve these peoples in the country's process towards a more democratic and developed society. Furthermore, although Article 39 of Bangladesh...

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