Thursday, March 31, 2011
As a regional coordinator of the study I commented it on the Norwegian national radio, NRK Kulturnytt, this morning March 31st.
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Friday, March 25, 2011
All the IWMF delegetas rasied their hand in favour for the principles of creating a Declaration of Gender Equity in News Media. The regions are now to decide on what will be their main goals when they go back home. Female editors can change the world and that is what they are doing it right now.
Many delegates at the IWMF Conference on Women Media Leaders are talking about these days as a life changing experience. Others talk about the energy they are getting from their fellow collegues. Cards are exchanged and pictures are taken as the delegates are preparing for the closing session.
This conference really is about pioneering change. Many of the managers, editors and publishers here are the first woman at their position in their company.
Through out the conversations it has also become clear that the daily lives of journalists are so different, depending on where you are in the world. I some countries being a woman is much more challenging than in others.
Achieving gender equality can never be a cause only for women. But it helps if women gets their voices heard - even as Women Leaders. Today we will see if the delegates can reach another level.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Catherine Gicheru, Managing Editor over 150 reporters at The Star, Kenya gives her daily routines:
4.30 am: Wake up. Cook special diabetes breakfast for her mother, cooking breakfast for her sister who has a heart problem and fix lunch to go for the sister.
5.30 am: Wake up the children. Catherine has two children of her own at the age of 24 , & 17 , she also the take caretaker of the three children of a deceased sister in the age 21, 16 and 12.
6.45 am: Arriving at the office
8.30 pm: Leaving the office networking and meeting with contacts
11.00 pm: Arriving at home
Weekend tasks. Shopping food for the week to come. Washing the 15 dogs. Making the kids go to church - even when she is working Sundays. Catherine is on duty every other weekend, then will go to the mosque on Friday instead of the church on Sunday. "It is important that there is something more than me."
Today was the day for the men to step forward and talk about why it is important to close the gender gap and why journalism has an important role to play for democracy. “The only hope for change is through the media.” said philanthropist Howard G. Buffet from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation. He even thought that advocacy journalism could have its place concerning these issues. Editor-in Chief and Co-founder of Bloomberg News, Matt Winkler agreed on that, in terms of journalists duty to cover the great challenges is society. At the same time journalism need more than ever to be accurate, credible and accountable.
Knight Foundation president Alberto Ibargüen talked about objectivity vs transparency and he thought that the latter will be the key for future journalism. He also hoped that technology might solve some of problems with inaccurate facts on the web as well as coming up with business models that will make local journalism more profitable.
All three men were quite optimistic about the future. " I am a believer", said Howard G Buffett who also said that his foundation will do more on these issues, especially on an international level.
Watch and listen to the panel here.
The print version of the Global Report on the Status of Women in News Media already seem to be hard to get. As a regional coordinator in the study I was lucky to get a copy the fist morning. The principal investigator, professor Carolyn M Byerly, only got a copy after insisting on it. Rosemary Okello Orlale, the Executive Director of African Women and Child Feature service and a regional coordinator had the same experience. Now we have been guests at the conferences with no voice. Still very exiting to take part of the conversation among all these great female editors.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
There are two of us here. Rosemary Okello Orale and me, Maria Edstrom, are two out of 17 regional coordinators of the Global report on the Status of Women in the News Media.We are very proud to take part of the conference ad listen to how the final results might create a baseline for discussions.
Countries are more peaceful and prosperous where there is a high level of gender equality. That was something emphazied by Melanne Verveer, Ambassador-at-large for Global Women's Issues at the president Barack Obamas administration. " Investing in women gives extra ordinary pay offs for all society" she said. Verveer pointed out the key role for (female) journalist to tell women's stories such as The city of Joy in Congo where women can regain dignity and possibilities after being raped and then go back to empower their communities.
She saluted IWMF for global report "It mirrors so many other studies." Verveeer also pointed out that no where is the gender gap closed. The full speech can be found here.
But the panel also made visual proof of the distant positions of female editors. From the Peru's Silvia Miró Quesada from El Commercio who preferred to talk about "meritocracy rather than democracy" to German Editor-in-Chief Ines Pohl from Die Tageszeitung, who believed in firm quotas on all levels. " In Die Tageszeitung there has to be a women on the front page every day. " It is possible" says Ines Pohl.
In the picture the morning panel: Jennifer McGuire, Canada CBC Editor-in-Chief, Ines Pohl, Germany, Editor-in-Chief, Die Tageszeitung, Carolyn M Byerly, princial investigator , Katty Kay, BBC World News, Barbara Kaija, Uganda, Editor-in-Chief, the New Vision, Silvia Miró Quesada Peru, Editorial consulting council El Commercio and Kjersti Sortland, Norway, Managing editor, Verdens Gang.
ClearHealthCosts.com is run by former New York Times editor Jeanne Pinder. She is hoping to use a combination of databases, crowd sourcing and journalism to help Americans to get a grip on their health costs. A beta version of her project can be found here.
Latitude is run by former BBC editor and producer Maria Balinska. She aims to find new ways to talk about international issues with an American audience/user. The site will be launched in May. Until then, read more on Latitude News.
NewsShed is a spin off from a local web site The Watershed Post run by Julia Reischel and Lissa Harris. The aim is to increase the amount of web based local journalism. read more on te project NewsShed - Sustainable Local News in Rural "News Deserts"
In a press release the IWMF Advisory Committee Chairman Merrill Brown says “Each of the winners offers an innovative way to deliver the news, and they are truly at the forefront of the digital media frontier.” The IWMF Global Digital News Frontier grants is funded by the Ford Foundation. For more info go to the IWMF website
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
It is an impressing group of editors meeting up at the IWMF conference. 80 delegates from almost 80 countries. I would like to listen to all of their stories, from Belarus, Pakistan and Spain, to Senegal, Malaysia and Argentina. Will all these delegates be able to commit them selves to a common goal? I do hope so.
As the women media leaders from all over the world meets in DC it is also interesting to think of who will be the future leaders. This weekend a group of young women visited Washington as a part of the Young Women Leadership Program . In this television news clip mentor Jennifer Leyton explains their work and some of the girls get to comment on the importance of YWLP. I met with them very breifly on Sunday morning o their way back to Charlottesville. When one of the girls heard that I was going to the IWMF conference on women media leaders she got very exited. "I want to be a journalist!", she said. Maybe she will be a future participant for the goal of more gender equal and diverse journalism. Proud to know you, Jen.
There are 15 delegates from Europe among the 70 Women Media Leaders participating in the IWMF Conference. Two of them are from the Nordic countries; Kjersti Sortland, managing editor of Verdens Gang in Norway and Steinunn Stefánsdóttir, deputy editor of Fréttabladid (sorry for the lack of correct captures). I know that SVT, the Swedish Public Service Television, also got an invitation but they are not here. There are 33 news rooms in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden that have participated in the Global study. (One news room didn't deliver good enough data and so the final report is based on 32 news rooms. )
I was not the only one taking a tourist jog this morning. There was a number of people taking the steps up to greet Abraham Lincoln at the Lincoln Memorial. Then we looked at the sun rising behind Capitol Hill as Washington DC now turns pink due to all the cherry blossoms. I don’t know if it was the beautiful morning or if it is a every day thing in DC, but most of the morning joggers greeted one another where ever they met. Very nice start!
I also had time to pass by associate professor Silvio Waisbord's office at the School of Media and Public Affairs at the George Washington University. He has a great knowledge of the media developments i Latin America and became quite interested in the IWMF conference. GWU is hosting many of the events at this conference.
Now I am soon off to the National Press Club for the opening night reception and to listen to Diane Saywer, ABC news anchor. Exiting!
I met Barbara Kaija in the elevator last night. She is the Editor in Chief of New Vision in Uganda and one of more than 70 women media leaders who meet in Washington DC this week to create a Plan of Action for Change. On a global scale there are still large inequalities when it come to gender, that goes for news rooms too.
Tomorrow we will now a lot more about the situation when the report ”The Global Report on the Status of Women in the News Media” will be unveiled. It is a mapping about 60 countries and 500 newsrooms in areas such as:
Salaries and Positions
Terms and Employment
Recruiting and Hiring
Journalism- Related Gender Policies and Goals.
I have been the regional coordinator for Nordic Europe and so far I have only seen the Nordic results so I am really curious to get the whole picture. The study has been conducted for International Women’s Media Foundation, IWMF who celebrates their 20th anniversary with this conference.
Friday, March 18, 2011
The full program can be found at www. iwmf.org.
Starting up the blog and collecting material for the trip. NIKK magasin on Nordic gender research and the english magazine on Swedish gender research. I also passed the Nordicom office and got some leaflets on their publications.
Hopefully there will be some interest for the Nordic reserach at the conference.