UNESCO field offices: Dhaka

The Government of Bangladesh adopted the Right to Information (RTI) Act in 2009 and makes provisions for ensuring free flow of information and people’s right to information. The freedom of thought, conscience and speech are also recognized in the Constitution as a fundamental right, with the right to information being a distinguishable part of it. Technological advancement in recent years has led to a boom in broadcast media: 20 private TV channels and 8 Radio stations have been established in the past couple of years while traditional forms of journalism remain strong.
 
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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...

Though there are a large number of newspapers, weeklies, television channels and radio stations, access to media is still a privilege enjoyed by upper and middle class people. The indigenous communities in the country's northern part and those living in Chittagong hill tracts are the most marginalized and disadvantageous groups of people. They are hardly represented in the mainstream media. Consequently their issues and concerns remain largely unexpressed. Under this project, skills and capacity of the unprivileged indigenous communities on radio journalism and production will be increased...

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