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UNESCO-supported media accountability project launched in South-East Europe
UNESCO has launched a two-year project to increase media accountability in South-East European countries. The main objectives of the project are to develop self-regulation tools and mechanisms, and to increase the awareness of self-regulation among media professionals and organizations in the region. The project also aims at speeding up the alignment with established international standards.

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UNESCO-supported media accountability project launched in South-East Europe

13-03-2009 (Tirana)
UNESCO-supported media accountability project launched in South-East Europe
Pictures from the Albanian
Media Institute website
Albanian Media Institute
UNESCO has launched a two-year project to increase media accountability in South-East European countries. The main objectives of the project are to develop self-regulation tools and mechanisms, and to increase the awareness of self-regulation among media professionals and organizations in the region. The project also aims at speeding up the alignment with established international standards.
The kick-off event, organized in collaboration with the Albanian Media Institute, took place from 6 to 7 March 2009 in Tirana, Albania. It gathered 27 participants from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey and Kosovo (under UNSCR1244). Participants included journalists, editors, journalism trainers, representatives of media centres and unions of journalists, media researchers, experts in media ethics and self-regulation, representatives of press councils, media councils, councils of honour and other branch organizations, as well as active readers’ representatives and newsroom ombudspersons.

The meeting aimed at presenting the project to the respective target groups, as well as at discussing possibilities and challenges of implementing newsroom mechanisms of self-regulation in the different countries. The recently published guidebook from the office of the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, mapping media self-regulation patterns, was also distributed at the event.

At the meeting, the current situation regarding media self-regulation in the respective countries was presented. Large differences between the countries were revealed. While in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo and Montenegro there are press councils established and functioning, the situation in Serbia, Albania, Croatia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia is not yet satisfactory. A number of good practices of readers’ representatives were presented by Ian Mayes, former readers’ editor at The Guardian, and by Yavuz Baydar, former readers’ representative at Milliyet Daily and present readers’ representative at Sabah Daily.

In the final recommendations, the participants of the conference agreed to further continue and streamline efforts in the area of self-regulation throughout the region, to which the UNESCO project can contribute. They discussed a concrete action plan for the project implementation. As a recommendation to the upcoming national round tables, it was reiterated that international experience and good-practice sharing would be of significant importance for aligning with international standards in media.

The project, which is supported by the European Commission, is planned for two years. During that period a large number of round tables, seminars and international meetings will take place.

Related themes/countries

  • This item can be found in the following topics:
          · Europe and North America
          · Albania
          · Bosnia and Herzegovina
          · Croatia
          · Freedom of Expression
          · The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
          · Serbia
          · Turkey
          · Montenegro
          · News


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