"Philanthropy increasingly provides important support for nonprofit journalism. Funders have varying reasons for supporting journalism and media. Some support journalism as a field unto itself, and a public good. Others see journalism and media as integral to their focus on democracy and civic engagement and participation. And still others may be primarily motivated by the content itself – the reporting, the storytelling – as a way to raise awareness of particular issues and topics.The following principles were developed by and for funders and are offered as a guide to both help funders and grantees arrive a clear understanding of their respective roles; and to protect the independence, integrity and impact of this work."
Media development seeks to support and promote a pluralistic, editorially independent and financially sustainable media sector. An independent media sector buttresses key governance goals such as voice, accountability, and transparency -- not through dissemination of messages about these issues, but through its very existence.This handbook is the result of a multi-year effort, the first stage of which 'Public Sentinel: News Media and Governance Reform'. That book explored key issues surrounding the media and governance, including: the ideal role of the media system in strengthening democratic governance, the conditions under which media systems fulfill their objectives, and the policy interventions most effective at helping the news media live up to its democratic potential.The second stage of this effort, presented here, is meant to bridge the gap between theory and practice. A survey reveals that very few governance advisors understand the concept of media development and how such programs could play a key role in advancing good governance.Ultimately, this handbook is designed for those who may be interested in media development programs, but are unclear about the whys, hows, and whens. It will introduce the fundamentals of media development, provide ways to conceptualize and analyze the sector, and help guide programming based on political economy analysis as well as individual country context. It also includes ideas on monitoring and evaluation of media development programs, plus links to further resources.
The Media Development Indicators were developed through a broad international consultation launched by the IPDC Intergovernmental Council at its 25th session in 2006. A detailed mapping of the main existing initiatives to define indicators of media development was carried out, in order to analyze their respective methodologies as well as their value and relevance to the priorities of the IPDC.On the basis of this mapping, a set of indicators aimed at covering all aspects of media development was elaborated and finalized after a two-year consultation process. The indicators were endorsed by the Council at its subsequent session in 2008 as an “important diagnostic tool for all stakeholders to assess media development in a given country and to thereby determine the areas in which assistance is most needed”. The Council adopted a Decision inviting the IPDC Bureau and other stakeholders working in the area of media development to take the Media Development Indicators into account when determining, in tandem with national authorities, communication development strategies within the overall context of national development.Since 2008, the MDIs have been widely acknowledged by major actors in the media development field, including UNDP, the World Bank, the Council of Europe (see Resolution 1636(link is external), 2008), the International Federation of Journalists, International Media Support, the Media Foundation for West Africa and the Doha Centre for Media Freedom.
In developing guidelines for media development interventions it is important to understand how the media supports democracy, human rights and sustainable development. Without a diverse and plural media environment that provides widespread access to information and debate, democratic politics cannot flourish and government cannot be held to account for its actions by the wider population. By acting as a platform for exchanging information the media plays an important role in ensuring the transparency of a society. And of course media helps ensure accountability of public administration by highlighting the actions of public officials and correcting the natural asymmetries of information between governed and governing. In this way media devel- opment programmes can support development objectives. For some years there have been concerns that aid programmes will only be effective and serve the interests of the poor if they are fully transparent and accounta- ble – an independent pluralistic media can help ensure this.Media environments capable of supporting democracy can be thought of as the corner sections of a triangle.
- the legal and regulatory environment;
- professional capacity (both managerial, technical and journalistic);
- a sound and sustainable base.
This report provides an examination of the current state of the field of media impact assessment, which Media Impact Funders (MIF) has been tracking for seven years. It also draws on insights from a few leading experts engaged in media impact assessment.
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.
Five Things You Need to Know
- 1.The work foundations care about is at risk
- 2.Journalism must forge new connections
- 3.Sustainable business models are crucial
- 4.Trust in journalism is under threat
- 5.Editorial independence and transparency matterFive Ways to Get Started
- 1.Identify grantmaking and investment strategies
- 2.Support innovations in reporting
- 3.Reinforce partnerships that expand the business models and engagement
- 4.Invest in community data
- 5.Learn more about media grantmaking
This booklet is a starter guide for foundations interested in exploring how to make impactful journalism and community-information grants. It shares the experiences of dozens of foundations that have recently funded news and information projects. It also introduces the work of peer foundations that support journalism. (Hummanitarian Journalism)
Despite stating that this ‘is not designed to be a comprehensive manual setting out best practices on grant making in the media space’, this report offers an extremely clear and practical overview of the ways in which foundations can support journalism responsibly. It includes sections on the rationale for funding journalism, advice from experienced donors and specific areas of opportunity and threat. (Hummanitarian Journalism)
This guide shows only a small sampling of how funders and publishers are working together to financially sustain the fourth estate, they hope that it nonetheless serves as a starting point for your own work by providing solid examples of groundbreaking funding efforts—ones that are both pioneering and effective. If you’re a grantee, you may also want to use this document to think about how your work might appeal to potential funders.
In 2017, API produced two sets of broad guidelines of best practices, one for funders and another for nonprofit newsrooms, based on consultations with funders, nonprofit media executives and researchers. The focus of these often-cited guidelines is primarily on establishing best practices for ensuring editorial independence. (Hummanitarian Journalism)
The new world of donor funding of media content addresses a serious need for in-depth coverage of subjects that affect society. At a time when media faces financial pressures in many parts of the world, donors have stepped in to create a public good, and grantees are grateful. However, as mentioned, we found that grantees and donors alike feel it may be time to come up with some codes of conduct aimed at promoting transparency and safeguarding newsroom independence.