Last week, writers from all over Norway gathered in Oslo. They share being persecuted in their own countries, and have found a safe place in one of Norway’s cities of refuge, through ICORN. Some of them are journalists, too, and JMIC had a small workshop with ten writers-journalists discussing experiences, job opportunities and journalism in Norway.
The Conference “Safety of journalists covering conflict & sensitive issues” opened 2. November with participants from 32 countries. Initially, the Secretary of state Tone Skogen from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that journalists were key agents of democracy and freedom and praised the partnership with HiOA. Furthermore, she emphasized the need to combat systemic impunity when it comes to assaults against journalists. She was joined by representatives from UNESCO (Rachel Pollack), Free Expression Foundation (Knut Olav Åmås), the Norwegian Union of Journalists (Eva Stabell) and Benedicte Giæver from NORCAP.
The conference is organized by the research group MEKK and will have participants from 30 countries from all continents. Several plenaries on a wide range of issues, as well as appr 40 paper presentations will take place. In addition there will be a book launch (“Shared Horizons. Negotiating Journalism, Core Values and Cultural Diversities”) and a film screening (“Velvet Revolution”, on women journalists at risk). More news from the conference will follow.
Below: The conference Committee: Welcome!
The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has given JMIC a grant that will enable us to continue the activities with partners in the Global South planned for the next two years.
JMIC´s aim is to build institutions for democracy and freedom of expression: ”Support of good practices in journalist education, independent media in vulnerable countries, protection of journalists working in conflict zones and journalists’ access to information. ”
In the coming year, several activities are planned. A workshop on extremism and social media is planned this autumn in Tunisia – as well as a regional security course next year. A regional security course is also planned in Uganda.
In cooperation with the Article 19 offices in North Africa, Eastern Africa and South Asia regional workshops on access to information are planned in Tunisia, Kenya and Nepal. We will also strengthen the cooperation with UNESCO.
The Rig on press freedom will be introduced in Palestine, a conference on gender and media is scheduled in South Asia, and cooperation will continue in Iran and Afghanistan. Besides, a regional cooperation project on visual journalism in China will continue. Development of teaching material is an ongoing activity, and a web portal will be prioritized.
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Two of Norway’s leading experts on journalist security, Trond Idås and Marte Høiby, gave an introductory course in Kristiansand, Norway, 6 February. The course was aimed at journalists and programme staff members working in countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Topics on the agenda were how to handle stressful situations and how to operate in conflict zones, and the course was well received among the 10 participants.
The course was a collaborative effort between JMIC and Strømme Foundation.
If you are interested in organizing a similar course, please contact us and we will taylor it to your needs.
On September 5th, Erik A. Eileng, Helge Rønning and Kristin Skare Orgeret travel to Kathmandu to participate at the official opening of the Nepal Africa Film Festival, arranged by the Norhed partner CJMC - College of Journalism and Mass Communication. The Norhed network, consisting of the journalism schools in Juba (South Sudan), Kampala (Uganda), Kathmandu (Nepal) and HIOA will also organize a research seminar on journalism, conflict and security for researchers and PhD students in Kathmandu. Furthermore the network’s annual meeting will be held, with representatives from NORAD as well as from the Norwegian Embassy in Nepal.