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A New Deal For Journalism

June 16, 2021

This report has been produced by the Working Group on the Sustainability of Journalism of the Forum on Information and Democracy, in response to a worsening international crisis facing the economic viability of independent professional journalism everywhere. The report calls for immediate and sustained action from, and collaboration between, governments and other influential actors to improve the policy, funding, and enabling environment for independent professional journalism – a New Deal for Journalism amounting to up to 0.1% of GDP annually in direct and  indirect  funding worldwide. The measures we outline in this report are evidence-based and can already point to broad support in many countries around the world. The gravity of the crisis facing journalism is severe, but, if policymakers and decision-makers can find the political will and imagination to take these choices now, and to build on them over the next decade, we believe this has the potential to be an inflection point for the sustainability of journalism, and for the health of open societies everywhere.

How to Fund Investigative Journalism

September 9, 2019

This report is designed to give funders a succinct and accessible introduction to the practice of funding investigative journalism around the world, via major contemporary debates, trends and challenges in the field. It is part of a series from DW Akademie looking at practices, challenges and futures of investigative journalism around the world. The paper is intended as a stepping stone, or a springboard, for those who know little about investigative journalism, but who would like to know more. It is not a defense, a mapping or a history of the field, either globally or regionally; nor is it a description of or guide to  how to conduct investigations or an examination of investigative techniques. These are widely available in other areas and (to some extent) in other languages already.Rooted in 17 in-depth expert interviews and wide-ranging desk research, this report sets out big-picture challenges and opportunities facing the investigative journalism field both in general, and in specific regions of the world. It provides donors with an overview of the main ways this often precarious field is financed in newsrooms and units large and small. Finally it provides high-level practical advice – from experienced donors and the investigative journalism field – to help new, prospective or curious donors to the field to find out how to get started, and what is important to do, and not to do.

FundAction Assessment

November 18, 2018

This is a brief, internal assessment - cleared for publication - of the European participatory grantmaking fund FundAction, which was jointly established in 2017 by four European philanthropic foundations, and which involved at the time of publication 100 activists from across Europe.

An Introduction to Funding Journalism and Media

September 1, 2018

Donors working around the world are concerned about the threat posed by closing space, including intensified threats against freedom of expression and information, and media freedom. This compounds the crisis that the field of journalism – a critical pillar of open, democratic societies – is already facing worldwide. At the same time, the technical and financial barriers to entry into the journalism field have never been lower, and the opportunities to innovate and have impact with journalism have in many ways never been greater. Against this backdrop, the journalism field is increasingly turning to philanthropy for support, including to human rights, social change and transparency donors. This book aims to help funders boost their understanding of the key issues, debates and approaches in funding journalism and media.

Cameras Everywhere: Current Challenges and Opportunities at the Intersection of Human Rights, Video and Technology

September 1, 2011

From the Arab Spring, with its use of social media, cell phones and the internet, to the release of confidential documents by Wikileaks, new technologies and new approaches are challenging long-held assumptions about how human rights documentation and advocacy functions, and who does it. Video has emerged as a key means through which human rights abuses can be exposed, while also contributing more broadly to ensuring that transparency, accountability and good governance are upheld. But while video and other communications technologies present new opportunities for freedom of expression and information, they also present challenges and expose vulnerabilities. In the video age, more people, intentionally or inadvertently, have become human rights advocates than ever before. Those seeking to create lasting impact will need to develop new skills and systems for creating and handling human rights video, online and off. But their access, privacy and safety is dependent on a wider range of people too, from governments and international organizations, to companies such as Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft, Twitter and Nokia. Access to information, technology, skills and networks shapes who can participate – and survive - in this emerging ecosystem of free expression. WITNESS' Cameras Everywhere aims to ensure that the thousands of people using video for human rights can do so as effectively, safely and ethically as possible. This report is based on discussions with over 40 senior experts and practitioners in technology and human rights. It presents a roadmap to emerging trends in policy and practice at the intersection of human rights, technology, social media, and business. Cameras Everywhere goes on to make specific recommendations on how important players in the new human rights landscape can take specific, manageable steps to strengthen the practical and policy environments for human rights video, and other information and communication technologies (ICTs) used for human rights.