Wednesday, March 04, 2009

IPDC bureau votes $2m for media projects

The Bureau of the International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC), concluded its 53rd annual meeting by voting a total of $1,95 million US dollars to support 63 new media development projects in developing countries.

This, IPDC said, would facilitate evaluations of the media sector of selected pilot countries using the Media Development Indicators.

The meeting which held at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, from 23 to 25 February 2009, was attended by over 25 countries.

A press statement from UNESCO office in Paris, stated that in the selection process, the bureau was guided by the programme’s three main priorities: promoting freedom of expression and media pluralism; developing community media; and professional capacity building.

While contributing to these priorities, the projects approval took on various shapes and forms from a project aimed at transforming Afghanistan’s top printed newspaper into a national newspaper to support for a safety training course for media professionals in the Gaza Strip; from a community radio capacity-building project in the Comoé National Park in Côte d’Ivoire to support for the publication of a bilingual monthly newspaper in favour of the Kichwa Indians community in Ecuador.

Also, the Bureau decided to allocate funds for carrying out assessments of the media landscape in selected pilot countries using the Media Development Indicators endorsed by the Intergovernmental Council of the IPDC last year.

Presided by Mr Walter Fust, the Bureau has a high degree of representativeness and legitimacy due to its geographical composition.

Media experts and observers also attended the meeting. The next meeting of the Bureau is expected to take place from 24 to 26 February 2010, while the next Council session is scheduled for 24-26 March 2010.

IPDC’s mission is to support the development of print and electronic media in developing countries by mobilizing funds, through voluntary contributions to the Special Account. The beneficiaries are key local actors seeking to expand opportunities for free and pluralistic media in their countries.

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