4 March 2010
At its 54th annual meeting at UNESCO headquarters on 24 – 26 February, the Bureau of the Organization’s International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) selected 84 development projects put forward by local media in 61 developing and emerging countries. The grants awarded by the eight members of the Committee totalled more than US$2.1 million.The Haitian Journalists Association received a special grant of US$130,000 following the recent earthquake that devastated the country.
The Bureau considered 95 project proposals in all, submitted by community media organizations, journalists associations and journalism schools. The 84 selected projects, 33 of them in Africa, were chosen because of their contribution to three Programme priorities – promoting freedom of expression and media pluralism; developing community media; and training for media professionals.
Projects selected include developing publications in the languages of Burkina Faso and production of programs in indigenous languages in Mexico; training regional journalists in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Cambodia; developing investigative journalism in Colombia and strengthening the role of journalism in the building of trust between Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela; and developing humanitarian news coverage in Palestine.
The IPDC Committee also discussed nominations for the UNESCO-IPDC Prize for Rural Communication. The laureate will be chosen by the Director-General, Irina Bokova, on the basis of the Bureau’s recommendations.
The IPDC Intergovernmental Council will also meet on 24 – 26 March at UNESCO headquarters. This is the Council’s 27th meeting and will discuss two important Programme initiatives – the implementation of media development indicators approved by the 26th session in 2008 and follow-up to the decision on the safety of journalists, also adopted at that session. Finally, the UNESCO-IPDC Prize for Rural Communication will be awarded during the Council session.
The IPDC Council meets every two years and comprises representatives of 39 member states elected by the UNESCO General Conference.