Next year promises to be an exciting one for Internews’ Earth Journalism Network, and perhaps our busiest one ever as we begin several intriguing new initiatives. Among them are clean energy workshops for journalists in select Indian states; a Fellowship program to the United Nations Oceans Conference in Portugal; and new media development activities in the Pacific region.
These projects come in addition to ongoing programs supporting environmental journalism throughout the Asia-Pacific region, reporting on resilience in Bangladesh and eastern India, wildlife and conservation journalism in East Africa, investigative reporting on wildlife trafficking, and our continuing partnership with UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism.
The largest new project, launched with generous support from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, will focus on improving coverage of clean energy issues in three key Indian states: Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Activities will include journalism training workshops in each state, augmented by the awarding of story grants to individual journalists.
In the Pacific region, additional support from the Swedish International Development Agency, which funds our current Asia-Pacific project, will enable EJN to develop and deliver environmental reporting training to professional journalists and journalism students. This funding will also allow us to host a climate change media workshop at next year’s Pacific Media Summit, provide story grants specifically to support reporting by Pacific-based journalists and form a dedicated editorial team to strengthen the content of our InfoPacific website.
Also, as part of our ongoing Ocean Media Initiative, EJN will carry out a Fellowship program supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation to bring at least 10 journalists to the UN Oceans Conference that will take place in Lisbon in June 2020 and focus on Sustainable Development Goal No.14 (SDG14 – Life Below Water). This Fellowship will be in addition to journalism Fellowship programs we’re planning for the UN’s biodiversity summit (UNCBD) to be held in China and the crucial COP26 climate change summit to be held in Glasgow, UK, making 2020 a very busy year indeed.
Meanwhile, EJN is continuing discussions with several other donors on potential new projects – or the extension of existing projects – that we’re hoping will unfold in the coming year. It certainly seems as if the need for improved environmental coverage has never been greater.