Knight International Journalism Fellowships Tackle Climate Change, Digital Media and Other Key Topics

The latest class of Fellows will spearhead high-impact projects in

Egypt, Guinea, India, Indonesia, Jordan/Lebanon, Russia and Uganda.

Oct 22, 2007, 01:00 ET from International Center for Journalists

    WASHINGTON, Oct. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The International Center
 for Journalists (ICFJ) announced on Oct. 22 the latest class of seven
 Knight International Journalism Fellows. In keeping with the program's
 commitment to selecting the best international journalists, the group
 includes the first Egyptian, Indonesian and African Fellows, as well as
 Fellows from Britain and the United States. They will address key societal
 issues through hands-on media projects in eight countries.
     (Logo: )
     The Fellows will spend a year working with local-partner organizations
 to transform media in their host countries and their regions. In India, a
 Knight Fellow will partner with the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel
 on Climate Change, the environmental group that shared the 2007 Nobel Peace
 Prize with former Vice President Al Gore.
     As a result of new Fellowship requirements, each Fellow is conversant
 in the language of the host country and has at least 10 years of experience
 in journalism or media management. Fellows now focus on working with local
 journalists to improve specific areas of coverage, including the
 environment, digital media and politics.
     The latest Knight International Journalism projects:
     In Egypt, a unique, online media mentoring space -- a Virtual Newsroom
 -- will provide a wide-reaching digital outlet for Arabic-speaking
 journalists contending with growing restrictions. Leading the project,
 hosted by the American University in Cairo: Roderick Craig, a veteran
 British journalist who has written for top newspapers including the Times,
 Daily Telegraph, Guardian and Financial Times. Craig also was managing
 editor and deputy publisher of the Middle East Times in Cairo.
     In Guinea, political coverage by independent radio will give citizens
 unprecedented opportunities to evaluate candidates and issues with new
 tools, including voter guides. The aim is to help Guineans hold free and
 fair elections in a country plagued by violence. Leader of the project,
 hosted by the OGUIDEM Media Organization: Vianney Missumbi, a citizen of
 the Democratic Republic of Congo and the first African Fellow. He has
 worked for more than 15 years in Africa as a radio reporter and producer
 and media-development expert.
     In India, environmental journalists will form associations and gain
 sophisticated skills and new reporting tools, including online resources,
 to help their country find a model for sustainable development. Project
 leader, with the Tata Energy Research Institute, headed by the director of
 the 2007 Nobel Laureate group: Arul Louis, the news editor for borough
 publications at The New York Daily News, who has worked for newspapers in
 the United States and India for more than two decades.
     In Indonesia, journalists will produce quality coverage of key
 environmental issues to help people across the archipelago achieve economic
 growth without depleting their nation's natural resources and beauty. The
 association of environmental journalists will be energized with new
 resources and members. Leading the project, hosted by Indopersda Primo
 (Persda) media group: Harry Surjadi, an Indonesian journalist who is
 founder and executive director of the Society of Indonesian Environmental
 Journalists. Surjadi has been working for 20 years as a reporter and editor
 covering agriculture, technology and the environment.
     In Jordan and Lebanon, television journalists will produce, for the
 first time, solution-oriented television programming on social issues ---
 from health care to refugee problems --- never before addressed on a
 regional basis. Leading the project, hosted by the Lebanese Broadcasting
 Corporation in Beirut in collaboration with Jordanian television: Mariam
 Sami, the first Egyptian Fellow, who oversaw production and story
 assignment for a weekly Al-Jazeera English program and worked for nearly a
 decade as a Middle East correspondent for The Associated Press.
     In Russia, journalists will provide in-depth coverage of critical
 community issues to help citizens hold local officials accountable during
 and after Russia's parliamentary and presidential elections. Leading the
 project, hosted by weekly newspaper chain Moi Rayon: Eric Schwartz, who for
 more than a decade reported and edited for local, regional and national
 U.S. newspapers, and then worked as a journalist and consultant in Russia
 and taught U.S. and world politics at Binghamton University.
     In Uganda, a new corps of health journalists will stress coverage of
 disease prevention and healthy living --- and will scrutinize governmental
 budgets for corruption and inefficiency. Project leader: Christopher Conte,
 a reporter and news editor at The Wall Street Journal for 15 years. Conte
 writes for Governing magazine and has conducted research and written
 reports and articles on health issues for the Robert Wood Johnson
 Foundation, and the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice.
     The Fellows will spend a week in Washington, D.C., undergoing training
 courses that will prepare them for their year-long assignments. In
 addition, the group will be honored at a reception on Tuesday, October 23,
 at the DACOR Bacon House.
     "This class puts into practice ICFJ's belief that quality journalism
 improves the human condition," ICFJ President Joyce Barnathan said. "Their
 work will leave a lasting beneficial impact on their host societies."
     Those interested in proposing projects or partnerships or applying to
 be Fellows can submit applications on the newly redesigned Knight
 International Journalism Web site:
     The Knight International Journalism Fellowships program, funded by the
 John S. and James L. Knight Foundation since 1994, has trained more than
 30,000 journalists, media managers and journalism students in 80 countries.
     The International Center for Journalists, a non-profit, professional
 organization, promotes quality journalism worldwide in the belief that
 independent, vigorous media are crucial in improving the human condition.
     Aiming to raise the standards of journalism, ICFJ offers hands-on
 training workshops, seminars, fellowships and international exchanges to
 journalists and media managers around the globe. For more information,
     The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation promotes journalism
 excellence worldwide and invests in the vitality of the U.S. communities
 where the Knight brothers owned newspapers. Since 1950 the foundation has
 granted nearly $300 million to advance journalism quality and the freedom
 of expression. For more, visit
     Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s),
 click appropriate link.
     Elisa Tinsley |
     Joyce Barnathan |

SOURCE International Center for Journalists