Regions: Latin America and the Caribbean

In recent years, Brazil has made major steps in promoting freedom of information in an effort to eliminate corruption. This was illustrated by the creation of a freedom of information law and also by the approval of a transparency law last year, which requires the publishing of all financial operations on a municipal, state and federal level. Encouraging civil society participation on the surveillance of public expenditures is crucial in avoiding corruption, and the press has the potential to occupy a major role in this endeavour, but only when journalists are capable of correctly...

Of the forty-four education institutions in Bolivia teaching communication-related subjects, not one offers journalism studies at either graduate or postgraduate level. As a result, practicing journalists who have attended Bolivian universities tend to lack knowledge and specialist training, thus impeding the quality of journalism delivered. In response to this issue, the Bolivian Association of Schools of Social Communication (ABOCCS) will adapt and transform its existing Master's Programme in Communication into a Master's in Journalistic Communication, based on UNESCO's model Journalism...

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...

Despite the large numbers of media houses and people employed in Grenada's media relative to the country's size, the absence of a tertiary-level media training institution means that many of its journalists are unqualified. This, combined with the low salaries offered to journalists, presents cause for major concern amongst members of the Media Association of Grenada (MWAG), as the profession offers unappealing prospects to school and college graduates. MWAG is responding to this concern by providing training in print and broadcast journalism to media practitioners in Grenada, with a view...

Due to its potential to offer integrated reporting formats, Latin American news readers are increasingly turning towards the internet as the news outlet of choice. This has led to the emergence of new actors within the field of journalism, with rapid growth particularly in community news websites, citizen journalism and blogging. This project focuses on the teaching of basic multimedia reporting skills (photo and audio for the web) and storytelling, to journalists from Mexico and Central America, and to citizens with an interest in developing multimedia news content aimed at covering their...

Violence against women in Mexico is widespread and often goes unpunished. In recent years there have been several cases of threats and attacks on media workers who have dared to report on such matters, making it highly challenging for communication media to exercise their fundamental right to freedom of expression. Community radios have the proven potential to give a voice to vulnerable and marginalized groups such as women and indigenous people, however at present, the majority of community radio staff in Mexico lack professional journalist training and expertise in human rights. This...

The media plays a key role in any successfully functioning democracy by providing a platform for democratic discourse. Recently however, the Commonwealth Broadcasting Association (CBA) has become concerned that media outlets in the Caribbean are facing increased pressure from government and judiciary sources to alter the content being broadcast, thus presenting a threat to democracy. This project aims to address this issue by providing training to journalists and producers, and to broaden the coverage of election issues throughout the Caribbean in order to better equip the media in...

In Venezuela's political context, the defense of free, independent, plural and transparent media is of paramount importance. Recent studies into electoral coverage have revealed however, that journalism tends to be 'single-source' and lacking plurality, and thus far very little effort has been made to encourage citizen participation in the media. This project will contribute to the media's capacity to promote and strengthen democracy in Venezuela by emphasizing the importance of plural information sources, citizen participation, and transparency in editorial policy leading to increased...

Radio XHFCE 105.5 FM La Voz de los Campesinos, former Radio Huayacocotla, is one of the few community radio broadcasts with legal permission that has survived the political and social struggle. Radio has been a communication link among the communities in this region, their cultural manifestation and their day-to-day life, their social issues as well as their projects and achievements. Communications in these areas are relatively restrained. This makes radio transmissions crucial for communication in the region. However, the radio for these communities represents more than a service for...

Although it looks like a pluralistic media landscape, there is a high concentration of both audiences and advertising revenue amongst nine media conglomerates (one TV network, two newspapers and six radio groups). In recent years the number of small, local and alternative media outlets has grown considerably both in the capital and especially in the countryside. Although many of the journalists working in small and local media lack formal training, they play an important role in their communities and in society at large. Many journalists would like to receive training to upgrade their...

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