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MDI is registered as a charity in the UK

Charity Name: Media Diversity

Registered No. 1110263

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Tobacco Girls’ article wins award


MDI Trainee makes Front Page of Moroccan Le Soir


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Examples of MDI's work
Poland’s Turn to the Far-Right: Where are the Media? PDF Print

Published: 6 February 2018

Country: Poland

By Angelo Boccato

Poland_Nationalists_MarchThe Polish ultra-right protestors made global headlines last November when they marched through Warshaw calling for “White Europe”, “Pure Poland” and “Refugess, get out!”. Not long afterwards, the rulling Law and Justice party proposed a controversal Holocaust law that forbids “Polish death camps” or suggesting “publicly and against the facts” that the Polish nation or state was complicit in Nazi Germany’s crimes.

With 60,000 people chanting antisemitic, Islamophobic, anti-gay and anti-migrant slogans, Poland is one of the European countries turning towards right-wing populism and normalising discriminatory discourse in the public sphere. The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) is exploring the role of the media ahead of the panel “Fascism is back. Is journalism part of the problem or of a solution?” at the International Journalism Festival in Perugia on 13 April 2018.

Get The Trolls Out! Workshop for Media Monitors PDF Print

Dates: 10 - 12 January 2018

Country: United Kingdom, London

By Eline Jeanne

GTTO_Workshop_1The media monitors within the Get the Trolls Out! (GTTO) project officially began to work observing the media landscape in several European countries. Their goal is the same as GTTO’s – to spot and counter any discrimination, religious hate speech and incidents against Muslims, Jewish and Christian communities in Europe.

Gathering participants from 6 European countries, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) hosted a workshop for the GTTO media monitors on 10 – 12 January in London. The lead trainer Dr Verica Rupar from the Auckland University of Technology says that running a workshop ahead of the monitoring is crucial for the success of the project mainly because “it is a chance to do pilot monitoring getting consistency of coding”.

The Role of the Media in the Rise of Austrian Far-Right PDF Print

Published: 11 January 2018

Country: Austria

Austria_Elections_2017Asel is the first baby to be born in 2018 in the Austrian capital Vienna. Instead of good wishes, Asel and her Muslim parents were subjects to hundreds of Islamophobic comments online. Hate speech appearing in comment sections of some media and in social media posts was so extreme that the Austrian president had to intervene reminding those who left racist messages that “all men are born free and equal in dignity and rights”.

The New Year’s Day outpour of hatred was a reminder that Austria has turned right becoming, as the Guardian described it, “the only western European country with a far-right presence in government.” Many would claim that the Austrian media, mostly tabloids, played an important role in the country’s move to the right. Also, Austrian populists and their supporters take to social media in order to communicate ideology online. For instance, Heinz-Christian Strache, the leader of far-right party FPÖ, is followed by almost 750,000 people on Facebook equivalent to 15% of Austrians who voted in the last elections.

Is the Media Response to Sexual Assaults Colour-Blind? PDF Print

Published: 22 December 2017

Country: United States

by Angelo Boccato

Burke_Me_TooThe “Me Too” movement has led to a change in the media approach towards sexual harassment allegations against men in position of power, but it has also exposed the lack, or a different standard of representation of black women who have denounced sexual harassment.

While the #MeToo hashtag was launched on Twitter in October 2017 by actress Alyssa Milano in the wake of sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein, the actual movement was founded back in 2006 by a black activist Tarana Burke. Although Burke was included in the story Person of the Year: “The Silence Breakers” by the TIME, she was omitted from the magazine’s cover.

MDI Contributes to the Journal for Applied Journalism PDF Print

Published: 23 November 2017

Region: Worldwide

Screen_Shot_2017-11-23_at_07.44.24“I’ve never interviewed ordinary people. We use them only in vox pops.” This is what an experienced Moroccan radio journalist declared during a Media Diversity Institute training programme a few years ago. The statement which reflects the unfortunate tendency in many countries MDI have worked in -  journalists speaking mainly to government officials and report mostly official news - is a title of an article in the October issue of the Journal for Applied Journalism and Media Studies (AJMS), entirely devoted to the issue of inclusive journalism.

MDI in Armenia: Real Women to Represent Real Women PDF Print

Dates: 2 – 3 October 2017

Country: Armenia, Yerevan

Yerevan_event_Oct_2017Judged by the conclusion of the Yerevan Civil Society Forum devoted to the EU-Armenia cooperation, majority of Armenians would be ready and willing to join the EU, but only under a condition that Armenian customs and traditions including unequal treatment of women, are kept.

This impression was particularly strong during a debate at the panel on Diversity and Gender where worsening gender inequality in the country raised a few doubts about Armenia’s readiness to promote the EU values. According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index, over the last 5 years, Armenia dropped from 84th to 102nd place out of 144 countries surveyed in total.

Meet the New Generation of Diversity and the Media MA Students PDF Print

Date: 21 September 2017

Country: UK, London

MA_Diversity_Students_2017On the first day that the students of MA Diversity and the Media 2017/18 gathered in Harrow Campus in London, their classroom was filled with excitement, but also nervousness.  Introducing this innovative MA programme, developed and designed by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) and the University of Westminster, the course leader Dr Roza Tsagarousianou asked some important questions. “What is the power of the media? But also who has the power in the media?”

The new students of MA Diversity and the Media come from all over the world. With their diverse background in education, origins, and motives, they are all committed to diversity. “I have chosen to study at this course because I want to explore what diversity means and signifies. I also intend to write stories about people who are or who feel different,” said one of the students.

EU Journalists Report on Migration during Workshop in London PDF Print

Dates: 4 – 8 September 2017

Country: UK, London

MAH_Workshop_Sep_2017The most recent journalistic breakthrough story about the culture of abuse and neglect in an immigration detention centre near London happened in the same week in which the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) gathered 15 European journalists at the workshop organised as part of the  Media against Hate project. After the BBC programme Panorama revealed evidence of a serious verbal and racial abuse of detainees, MDI workshop participants followed the story and reported on it back to the newsrooms in their countries. Some told the story of an asylum seeker from Nigeria who was detained in the notorious Brook House featured on BBC Panorama. Another participant produced an article on a Zimbabwean asylum seeker who has been waiting 6 years for a decision of the British immigration authorities.

During the 5-day workshop in London, participants also produced stories, audio and video pieces on topics related to Brexit and its impact on EU migrants. Zoltan, for instance, told the story of Hungarian doctors whose status is unknown after Britain departs from the EU. Johanna reported on a complicated nature of family reunion cases amongst refugees coming from different countries, while Beatriz wrote about ‘stateless people’ who do not have passports or nationality of any country. Journalist Filipe from Portugal produced a radio piece about the refugees turning entrepreneurs in a new country and under new circumstances.

Reporting on Migration & Refugees Workshop for EU Journalists Starts in London PDF Print

Date:4 – 8 September 2017

Country: UK, London

Screen_Shot_2017-09-04_at_08.55.10The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) is holding a workshop for journalists from EU countries who are keen to improve their skills related to reporting on migrants, refugees and other vulnerable groups.

The event will be held in London between 4 – 8 September 2017. The workshop, organised as part of the Media Against Hate project, aims to explore best practices on covering sensitive issues concerning migrants, refugees and other vulnerable groups, in the context of Brexit and the growth of xenophobic attitudes across Europe.

Dune Voices Success at the Migration Media Award Ceremony PDF Print

Date: 14 June 2017

Country: Malta

Migration_Media_Award_Logo_2017Three Dune Voices journalists received the Migration Media Award at the recent ceremony held in Malta. Three awards for fact-based and impartial reporting on the complexity of the issue of migration that went to the journalists working with Dune Voices represent an official recognition of the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) work and its multimedia platform team.

One of the newly EU-established Migration Media awards went to Bennour Hussein, a Libyan journalist trained by MDI and Dune Voices together with 70 other reporters from Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria. Hussein was awarded for a story about migrants and refugees in a camp in the Libyan town Gharyan published on the Dune Voices website. Chahreddine Berriah, one of the most productive Dune Voices reporters from Algeria, has been awarded for an article published in El Watan. Chahreddine wrote about the fate of Sub-Saharan migrants between Algeria and Morocco.


MDI at Facebook OCCI against Extremism Launch PDF Print

Date: 23 June 2017

Country: UK

Facebook_LogoAfter Germany and France, Facebook launched its Online Civil Courage Initiative (OCCI) in the UK aiming to help charities and NGOs identify and eliminate hate speech. The Media Diversity Institute (MDI), which have implemented several projects on countering hate speech, participated at the official Facebook event on 23 June in London.

MDI Executive Director Milica Pesic was amongst the representatives of British civil society, media and academia at the Facebook event, while Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer of Facebook, revealed the details of the Online Civil Courage Initiative.

MDI Publishes Media Relations Handbook for CSOs in Arabic PDF Print

Published: 30 June 2017

Country: Algeria, Worldwide

algeria_manual_top_smallerThe Media Diversity Institute (MDI) has published an online media relations guide for civil society organisations entitled “Reach! Engage! Change!”. The first published version is in Arabic. The handbook was distributed to CSO activists in Algeria as part of the project “My Voice Counts: a Campaign to Promote the Rights of Women, Youth and Children in Algeria” funded by the European Commission.

The author of the handbook which deals with media communications in the digital age is Danica Dasha Ilic, a freelance journalist and media trainer. Nawel Hafid Guellal, founder & executive director of the Algerian NGO, Human Development Network (HDN), states in the handbook preface to the Algerian edition: “This handbook has been designed for the noble purpose of helping to rebuild trust and dialogue between civil society and the media in Algeria. It contains practical steps and affordable tools that would help any organization to get in touch with journalists and other media actors and build sustainable professional relationships. Additionally, the handbook draws on the expertise of the Media Diversity Institute in the field of organizational communication with the media in the region.”

The BBC Published a Dune Voices Story from Mali PDF Print

Published: 19 May 2017

Country: Mali, Bamako

Bamako_Photo_1“Motorcycles never die in Bamako. That is the first thing that strikes you when you drive on the streets of Bamako. There are motorcycles everywhere, often with women drivers dressed in colourful clothes,” says Khalil Sow, a Dune Voices journalist based in Mali’s capital city. His story produced for Dune Voices about an artist using motorcycle parts for art installations was picked up and published by the BBC Arabic.

The Media Diversity Institute designed and set up Dune Voices, a multimedia platform for stories featuring marginalised communities in the Sahara region in 2014. Potential of the stories coming from Dune Voices journalists was soon recognised by many regional and international media, including the BBC, that republished and rebroadcast them.

MDI Joins UNESCO in Marking World Press Freedom Day 2017 PDF Print

Date: 3 May 2017

Country: Indonesia, Jakarta

Screen_Shot_2017-05-07_at_11.14.37The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) participated at the official celebration of the World Press Freedom Day (WPFD) in Jakarta organised by UNESCO, the Government of Indonesia, and the Press Council of Indonesia. On 3 May, MDI Executive Director Milica Pesic was one of the speakers at the panel “Fostering inclusiveness and gender equality through media innovation”.

“It is extremely important to ‎continue discussing the significance of inclusion as one of the basic democratic principles. The UNESCO celebration of the World Press Day in Jakarta was very much about inclusive societies that are under threat. If citizens are being excluded on basis of their class, ethnicity, religion, gender and if they don’t feel being a part of the society, that would make some people look for extremism as an option. Therefore, the media that provide space for inclusion of all voices can significantly contribute to the prevention of extremism,” said Pesic at the panel on inclusiveness and gender equality.

MDI in Perugia: China Between Traditional and Digital Media PDF Print

Date: 5 April 2017

Country: Italy, Perugia

by Giulia Dessi *

MDI_in_Perugia_2At the International Journalism Festival in Perugia 2017, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) hosted the panel “China: Between Traditional and Digital Media”.

Like in many other countries, in the past ten years, the diffusion of the internet has posed new challenges to traditional media in China, changing the way media are consumed, owned, managed, and produced. Yet, China – with more than 1000 daily newspapers, 2000 TV channels, and 9000 magazines – presents a unique case: with the world’s largest online population, China is also the largest media market in the world, but one where outlets operate under tight control from the Communist Party.

Moderated by MDI Executive Director Milica Pesic, the panel explored the impact of technology on Chinese media from different perspectives: from the way effective political supervision – and censorship – works on social networks in the country, to the specific case of the state news agency Xinhua which highlights strong ideological continuities with the past.

MDI in Perugia: "China's Censors as Techy as Media Users" PDF Print

Date: 5 April 2017

Country: Italy, Perugia

MDI_in_Perugia_1At the ongoing International Journalism Festival in Perugia 2017, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) hosted a panel “China: Between Traditional and Digital Media”. The panel moderated by MDI Executive Director Milica Pesic attracted attention of the Festival’s participants since the panellists explored the impact of technology on the Chinese media outlets, their social media presence and the way traditional media operate in a digital age.

The Dean of the School of Communication and Design at Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou, Zhang Zhi’an, said that the print in China is on a rapid decline, but that the traditional media are still the main channels of information. Professor Zhang said  that popular messaging applications such as WeChat and QQ have 700 million and 900 million active users.

“Media Tools against Hate Speech” Workshop for EU NGOs PDF Print

Dates: 22 – 26 May 2017

Location: London, UK

MAH_Image_2The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) is inviting applications for a workshop it is organising for civil society organisations involved in countering hate speech and promoting rights of minority groups who are discriminated and targets of hate speech.

The event will be held in London between 22 – 26 May 2017. CSO activists from EU countries interested in participating at the workshop should contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for further information on how to apply. The deadline for submitting applications is 2 May. All costs of participation will be covered by the organisers.

The workshop organised within the Media against Hate project aims to explore different media tools that can be used in countering hate speech. The trainers will particularly focus on digital media tools and platforms that can be used to support the work of those trying to counter hate speech. The workshop will be highly practical in nature and one of the objectives will be for all trainees to produce at least one media campaign product during the event.

MDI Western Balkans at the National Consultation on MIL PDF Print

Date: 9 March 2017

Country: Serbia

MIL_Serbia_National_Consultation_March_2017The Media Diversity Institute Western Balkans participated at the Consultation on National Media and Information (MIL) Policies and Strategies in Serbia.

The conference, held on 9 March in Belgrade, gathered multiple stakeholders to discuss Media and Information Literacy (MIL) in Serbia, to initiate the process of creating specific policy recommendations on integrating MIL in the formal, non-formal and informal education system and look for innovative and sustainable approaches to MIL.

"Make Your CSO Visible" Digital Workshop in Macedonia PDF Print

Dates: 21 – 23 February 2017

Country: Macedonia, Skopje

MAMIL_Digital_Training_3Civil society activists from eight organisations in Macedonia participated at the workshop on digital communications. They have been debating how to raise awareness on media literacy and their CSOs objectives and goals and whether their digital presence could be the answer.

During the training on 21 – 23 February in Skopje, organised by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) within the project Media Literacy in the Age of News Overabundance: Macedonian Coalition of Media and Information Literacy (MAMIL) led by the School of Journalism and PR (SJPR), activists from eight CSOs learned how to draft digital media strategy, how to wisely and responsible use social media networks and how to produce videos for the purposes of their campaigns.

London Kids Discuss Media Bias in British and US Press PDF Print

Date: 26 January 2017

Country: UK, London

US_Embassy_Kids_3The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) participated in the Youth Conference #MediaMinded held in the US Embassy in London. An MDI representative facilitated one of the workshops with A-level students from eight London secondary schools, who discussed media literacy, media bias and other challenges in the media environment. The MDI session focused on news reporting of migration and minorities in the US and the UK, while  three other sessions held in the US Embassy on 26 January 2017 analysed media coverage of climate change, (mis)information about relations between Russia and Ukraine, youth, unemployment and other issues.

MDI Reporting Diversity Courses at SYSU in China PDF Print

Published: 15 December 2016

Country: China

SYSU_Models_Milica_with_StudentsAt the prominent Sun Yat-Sen University (SYSU) in the capital of the most economically prosperous Chinese province, Guangdong, the first ever series of Reporting Diversity modules has finished. The Reporting Diversity modules are a result of the cooperation between the SYSU’s Journalism School and the Media Diversity Institute (MDI).

More than 150 Communication and Journalism students attended each module taught by five jointly selected lecturers by SYSU and MDI. From next year, students at SYSU will have an opportunity to attend the full semester course on Reporting Diversity.

Unique MA Diversity and the Media Combines Theory and Practice PDF Print

Published: 9 November 2016

Country: UK

by Roxane Biedermann

Ma_students_2The number of students attending the MA in Diversity and the Media in 2016/17 at the Westminster University has tripled.  Twenty four students attend the course, designed and set up in partnership with the Media Diversity Institute (MDI). From year to year, this unique MA course is changing, mostly following new trends in journalism, communication and the media. Also, this year there are new lecturers such as a filmmaker Rani Khanna teaching “Reporting Diversity: Gender, Sexuality, Age, Disability” module.

Professor Roza Tsagarousianou, who is in charge of the course, says there are numerous reasons why students express big interest in diversity in the media and related issues. “They know why they came”, says Tsagarousianou.

MDI Launches the Guide on Countering Hate Speech Online PDF Print

Date: 22 July 2016

Region: Europe

Stopping_HateThe Media Diversity Institute (MDI) within its project Get the Trolls Out published the guide “Stopping Hate: How to Counter Hate Speech on Twitter?” The guide contains useful tips and advice for both civil society organisations and individuals and it was produced and promoted with collaboration with Twitter.

The Guide is available in 4 languages (English, French, Hungarian, and Greek).

MDI partnered with UNESCO to Mark World Press Freedom Day PDF Print

Dates: 2 - 4 May 2016

Country: Finland, Helsinki

World_Press_Freedom_Day_UNESCOThe Media Diversity Institute (MDI) joined over 50 civil society and media organisations to mark the World Press Freedom Day (WPFD) this year in Helsinki. At the event organised by UNESCO, there were more than 1100 participants who celebrated the fundamental principle of press freedom reminding the world that in dozens of countries media still face censorship, fines and closure while journalists are harassed, attacked, detained and even murdered.  According to UNESCO, 825 journalists are known to have lost their lives doing their job over the past decades. Only less than 6 percent of these killings have been resolved.

MDI Brings Leading Chinese Professors to the UK PDF Print

Published: 14 April 2016

Country: China/UK

China_Professors_Frontline_ClubGender is a ‘safe topic’ in China that can be discussed in the media, academia and elsewhere. But gender is still mostly understood as a women’s issue. Two leading professors from the prominent Sun Yat-Sen University (SYSU) based in the capital of the most economically prosperous Chinese province, Guangdong, are challenging that very concept of gender, especially in journalism and media reporting. The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) invited Dr Haiyan Wang and  Dr Zhijin Zhong to visit the UK and various universities that have modules on gender and media. They also talked to professors from MA Diversity and the Media, an innovative postgraduate course developed and designed through partnership between MDI and the University of Westminster.

MDI’s guests from China also visited Kings College, City University, Goldsmiths, LSE and Cardiff University. They learnt that the average ratio of female to male students attending journalism courses in the UK is 60:40, but also that when it comes to Gender and Media Courses this ratio dramatically changes, as hardly any men join in. For instance, out of 50 Gender and the Media students at Cardiff University, only 6 are men.

MDI at the World Journalism Education Congress PDF Print

Dates: 14-16 July 2016

Country: New Zealand

WJEC_2016_openingThe fourth World Journalism Education Congress (WJEC) gathered leading journalism educators from around the world in Auckland, New Zealand, from 14 to 16 July 2016. Hosted by Auckland University of Technology (AUT), the WJEC saw more than 200 delegates from around the world presenting and sharing their knowledge and experience in teaching young journalists. WJEC partners and sponsors included the Media Diversity Institute (MDI). Our Executive Director Milica Pesic provided expert’s background information to the Congress’ Inclusive Journalism syndicate offering recommendations to journalism educators on how to best prepare their students for future coverage.

"The media outlines the pros and cons but there is no 50 shades of grey, which is what every society is made up of,” said Pesic sharing with other participants MDI's grassroots approach to inclusive journalism.

Women Seldom a Topic in Political Shows in Morocco, MDI Study Shows PDF Print

Date: 8 March 2016

Country: Morocco

Morocco_8_March_Study_Event_UK_Ambassador_and_Mounia_BelafiaGathering more than 200 media decision makers, journalists, editors, directors of public media services, diplomats and international experts, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) has presented results of “The Image of Women in the Moroccan Media in the Run-up to and During Local and Regional Elections 2015” study. In her opening speech at the event held on the International Women’s Day in Rabat, the UK Ambassador to Morocco Karen Betts said she is pleased that through British funding MDI has been able to help empower Moroccan and Mauritanian women. “The project has made an important contribution to raising the profile of women who ran in recent local, regional and provincial elections in Morocco,” said Ambassador Betts. She has mentioned other MDI achievements on social cohesion and diversity in the region such as the Dune Voices website.

Presenting results of monitoring done by MDI and its partners ISIC Alumni and AEF (Association of Women Start), Dr. Abdelouahhab Errami said that most of Moroccan media considered women to be voters rather than actors in political processes such were elections 2015. “Our Study shows that women’s issues are only tackled during specialized programs for women, cooking or talk shows. In political shows on TV and radio, women would only appear as guests and rarely women’s issues would be a topic of a serious debate,” said Dr. Errami.


MDI Joins the No Hate Speech Movement PDF Print

Published: 29 February 2016

Region: Europe

nohate2The Media Diversity Institute has joined the No Hate Speech Movement, the Council of Europe campaign against expressions of hate speech online in all forms, especially against young people.

Together with the No Hate Speech Movement, the MDI will raise awareness about hate speech online, promote media literacy and mobilise, train and network online youth activists for human rights.

The MDI project ‘Get the Trolls Out’ has linked up with the No Hate Speech Movement campaign to denounce antisemitic hate speech, a focus area of the campaign in the coming years. This project, run by the Media Diversity Institute in partnership with four other organisations in Europe,  counters antisemitic speech by exposing misinformation and promoting accurate, balanced and inclusive messages about Jews.

MDI to Combat Antisemitism and Islamophobia in Brussels PDF Print

Date: 25 February 2016

Region: Europe

MDI_Antisemitisam_Islamophobia_European_ParliamentIn the past few years antisemitic incidents have risen in Europe, culminating in fatal terrorist attacks against Jewish citizens. Parallel to this, anti-Muslim hatred in the form of serious verbal and physical violence against Muslims has also increased.

The media have often fuelled this type of discrimination against the two communities by promoting prejudices and spreading misleading information. If websites and social media are the main platforms to share content on Jewish conspiracy theories, Holocaust denial, and Jew’s demonization, it is not rare to encounter forms of islamophobia on mainstream media and tabloids.

Debating Diversity With Postgraduate Students in Agadir PDF Print

Dates: 8 – 10 February 2016

Country: Morocco

Students_AgadirWho is the most stereotyped in the Moroccan media – HIV positive people, Jews, prostitutes or Sub-Saharan migrants? Students of MA Media and Diversity at the University of Ibn Zohr in Agadir didn’t have an easy task. Through practical journalistic exercises at the 3-day workshop with the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), they debated stereotypes and generalisations, misrepresentations of women and other marginalized groups, lack of female editors and editors-in-chief in Morocco, ethics, objectivity and inclusion, as well as the way Muslims are perceived by some Western media.

Dune Voices Journalist Wins a Prestigous Anna Lindh Award PDF Print

Published: 24 February 2016

Countries: Libya, Algeria, Morocco, Mali, Mauritania

Maimouna_SaleckMaimouna Saleck had been fascinated by journalists since her childhood because they give a voice to people to explain their problems in hope that someone may listen and help. But due to lack of opportunities and journalism schools in her native Mauritania, Maimouna’s passion for knowledge led her only to becoming a librarian, until she got a chance to be trained as a journalist by Dune Voices in 2015. Such was her commitment to her new career, that within a year she had won the prestigious Anna Lindh Mediterranean Journalist Award 2016, for her story on the infiltration of Islamic extremists in traditional religious schools ‘mahadhras’ in Mauritania.


MDI Western Balkans Publishes Report on Corruption at Universities PDF Print

Published: 18 January 2016

Country: Serbia

Moze_li_bez_partijeHow do you get a job at the University of Belgrade? Do you need personal and professional connections, or do you have to be a member of a political party? Some of the answers are offered in a report on corruption in higher education in Serbia published by the Media Diversity Institute Western Balkans and its partners. The report produced after 6 months of research focused on university professors and experts’ perception on the level of corruption at the University of Belgrade.

The report and a debate that has followed are part of the project ”Towards more transparent higher education” aiming to examine the role of Serbian political parties in employment of lecturers and their assistants at universities in Serbia.

MA Diversity and the Media for Tomorrow’s Inclusive Journalists PDF Print

Published: 1 February 2016

Country: United Kingdom, Worldwide

MA_Diversity_Students_2015They come from different backgrounds – different countries, religions, ethnic group, and cultures. Some are experienced journalists eager to foster their reporting skills, while others are BA graduates who want to begin a career in journalism. The students who enrol to the MA Diversity and the Media at Westminster University designed and set up in partnership with the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), all want something different than what other masters’ in Journalism or Media Studies usually offer. Not simply a combination of practice and theory, but a critical understanding of the social and media structures and journalistic practices impacting upon the social construction, representation and understanding of social diversity. Plus a first-hand experience in the practice of inclusive journalism.

MDI in Mauritania: Strenghtening Civil Society PDF Print

Dates: 7 – 9 December 2016

Country: Mauritania

Screen_Shot_2016-01-15_at_18.20.06Fahmy Mint El Alem is a student at the University of Nouakchott, Mauritania. Even though she says she is occupied with her studies, she dedicates her time to two civil society oraganisations in the West African country. One of organisations Fahmy is active in, is fighting for the rights of prisoners. The other CSO is campaigning for better conditions for women and girls living with cancer.

"People we are working with have reduced visibility and live in very specific circumstances. That is one of the reasons why I wanted to learn how to get attention of the media and make them write about problems of prisoners and seriously ill women,” says Mint after attending the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) workshop in Nouakchott, on 7 – 9 December 2015.

MDI Trainee Broke a Story on Salt Fraud PDF Print

Published: 16 december 2015

Country: Egypt

Hanaa_EgyptHanaa Abu El-Ezz is 28-year old journalist from Egypt who broke a story on salt fraud and its bad impact on people’s health. Hanaa, who was a trainee of the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), proved that salt distributed in villages around Alexandria contains impurities, dust and heavy metals. It has been distributed to people who were not aware of the risk.

Hanaa wrote this story as a result of a joint NGO-Media cooperation project organised by MDI.  Not only that her story got a great publicity, but Hanaa has won an award of excellence in health issue from Alexandria's Press Syndicate.

“I was surprised that my superiors admired my report about salt fraud to the extent that they dedicated two thirds of the page for it. Many people commented on online version of my article while my friends and family asked me how I could differentiate the hygienic salt from the bad one. No one knew about this matter at all. Even my mother had bought different types of salts to make me choose the safe one,” says Hanaa.

Paris Attacks: What the Media Could Have Done Differently PDF Print

Published: 24 November 2015

Region: Worldwide

Le_ParisienDouble standards, anti-Muslim rhetoric, generalisations and spreading fear from their front pages – this is what some of the leading news organisations, as well as tabloids, have been criticised for since the tragic events on 9/11 in the US. Covering the Paris attacks, some journalists have failed to practice ethical reporting, did not fact-check and did not quote only reliable sources thus spreading xenophobia, hatred and discrimination.

Reporting on the Paris attacks should have been different than the forms of journalism we saw in the coverage of the Iraq war, the Ukraine and the refugee crisis. Most of the editors and reporters could have avoided repeating a monolithic approach to the Muslim population, as CNN did assigning collective responsibility to a Muslim civil right activist in Paris.

Don’t Sensationalise Antisemitism – MDI Writes to the Evening Standard PDF Print

Country: UK

Published: 24 November 2015

Evening_Standard_MDI_ComplainThe Evening Standard, free press newspaper distributed in the London area, in two occasions has been quick in labelling as antisemitic an act of vandalism that appears not to be such and has used inaccurate information about the vandalised statue.

The MDI executive director has written to the managing editor of the Evening Standard to ask the paper to keep reporting antisemitic attacks, but not to use sensationalistic headlines and inaccurate information that would mislead its readers.

The Evening Standard has not replied yet to our complaint.


Moroccan Media and Civil Society Leaders on MDI Tour to Switzerland PDF Print

Dates:  1 – 7 November 2015

Country: Switzerland

Swiss_Tour_RTSThe concept of federalism preserving local characteristics and celebrating every kind of diversity works well in Switzerland. As Dr Nicolas Scmitt from Institute de Federalisme said, “Switzerland is a paradigm of diversity with 26 cantons and 4 official languages.” Therefore 17 leaders of Moroccan media and civil society, partners of the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), wanted to know how multiregional, multilingual and multicultural nature of the Swiss society and media can be compared if not adapted to North-African circumstances.

Moroccan leading media and civil society representatives coming from the national radio SNRT, Atlantic radio, Al Maghribia TV channel, 2M and Medi1, as well as from regulatory body HACA, national news agency MAP and organisations such as Damir, Karama and official governmental body for Human Rights, visited Switzerland on 1 – 7 November 2015. They talked to the representatives of the Swiss public radio and TV, private and regional media, Parliament, Institute for Federalism and leading journalism schools and universities. Supported by the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation, MDI organised an exchange of ideas and experience between its Moroccan partners and their Swiss hosts.

MDI at the World Journalism Educators Congress PDF Print

Dates: 14 – 16 July 2016

Deadline for Abstracts: 1 December 2015

Region: Worldwide

WJEC_New_ZealandThe biggest world gathering of journalism educators will be held at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) in New Zealand on 14 – 16 July 2016. With the support of journalism education organizations worldwide, the 4th Congress is designed to provide a discussion forum on common issues and interests and a foundation for supporting the continuing development of journalism and journalism education around the globe.

The WJEC is inviting academic paper abstracts related to the wider issue of journalism education for presentation as refereed research papers at the conference.   To submit a paper abstract, go to or contact the Steering Committee Chair, Verica Rupar on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

The deadline for submitting abstracts is 1 December. The organiser offers the UNESCO NZ travel grants for participants from the least developed countries and it might be possibilities for other travel grants.

MDI at the Hong Kong MIL Conference PDF Print

Date: 4 - 6 November 2015

Region: Worldwide (Hong Kong)

Media_LiteracyAfter decades of development, research and practice of media literacy education, experts are still struggling to define what Media and Information Literacy (MIL) really is. According to the 2-day debate at the Hong Kong Conference, jointly organised by the School of Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University and Institute of Communication Studies, Communication University of China – it seems that the field of MIL is located at the crossroad of many academic disciplines and it possesses a multidisciplinary characteristic. The participants agreed that for both, research and practice, media literacy is not restricted to be carried out in a single discipline.

Dune Voices – A Platform for Stories about People and their Communities PDF Print

Dates: 28 September – 20 October 2015

Country: Mauritania

Mauritanian_FishermenMauritania is one of the richest fishing grounds in the world. Its 754 kilometre long Atlantic seaboard is the subject of fishing agreements between Mauritania and different countries, including the EU.  The Financial Times reported that Brussels has “one of the most important fisheries agreement, both in terms of volume and product diversity” with Mauritania. However, there are not many media reports about “les pecheurs du Mauritanie (Mauritanian fishermen).  They are ordinary people who struggle to survive, not only at the ocean when they go fishing, but also in their everyday lives since most of them don’t have any social security, insurance for their boats or state pensions.  Article on Mauritanian fishermen is just one of several stories produced for the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) multimedia platform Dune Voices, during the second round of journalism training for Dune Voices reporters.

Arab Media Coverage of the Refugee Crisis PDF Print

Published: 9 October 2015

Region: Worldwide

RefugeesAs millions of Syrians refugees began to embark on the dangerous journey to Europe or died along the way, their stories have been dominating Arab newspapers, popular TV shows and social media platforms. Media coverage varied across outlets and great volume included condemnation of alleged Arab indifference, calls for internal reforms and criticism of the West.

Some media in the Arab countries expressed an outrage towards Gulf leaders, accusing them of being the ‘elephants in the room’ when it comes to their lack of support and responsibility for fleeing Syrian refugees. The Gulf Times, an English daily in Qatar, compared welcoming signs greeting refugees in Austria and Germany with the silence of the Gulf. Muhammad Hussein, a columnist for the Egyptian daily Al-Ahram, wrote that the viral photo of Aylan Kurdi encapsulates all the disasters that afflict the Arab world.

The Photo that Spurred Media Activism PDF Print

Published: 9 September 2015

Region: Worldwide

Aylan_Kurdi_PhotoDespite not being the first of this kind, the photo of lifeless washed up body of Aylan Kurdi, a Syrian boy in a Turkish beach, with his face down and his sneakers still on, got the world’s attention.

It caused even more talk and discussions about current refugees’ crisis, but also about the human catastrophe unfolding in the Mediterranean for years. The publication of this photo posed also one of the most difficult ethical dilemmas for editors around the world – whether to publish distressing images of children, or not.

MDI at the Newsweek Press Freedom Conference PDF Print

Date: 3 September 2015

Country: Serbia

Newsweek_Conference_2“Everybody is talking about the laws [on media freedom] but these laws need to be implemented,” said Dunja Mijatovic, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, addressing  a  conference in Belgrade organised by Newsweek Serbia. As a guest at the panel moderated by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), Mijatovic warned that there is a need to “speak loud and clear about the problems with media freedom”.

More than 20 speakers from around the world as well as some 200 attendees from Serbia itself agreed that the “situation in journalism in the Western Balkans is worrying”. The main problems include governmental and financial pressures, as well as lack of trust in journalism and journalists. Mijatovic added that the situation in the Balkans is worse because of many unresolved murders and physical attacks against journalists. Equally critical about the situation in journalism in the Balkans was Aidan White, Director of the Ethical Journalism Network.

Media in Sri Lanka: from Division to Inclusion? PDF Print

Published: 3 August 2015

Country: Sri Lanka

Sri_LankaAhead of August 17 Parliamentary elections, all Sri Lankans are talking about is whether the former president, Mahinda Rajapaksa would win enough votes to get back in power, this time as Prime Minister. Add to it a laconic statement, ‘yes, it is better since Rajapaksa lost the January presidential elections, but, not that much better’ and this is, more or less, where any similarity between the Sinhalese majority (mainly Buddhist) and Tamils, the largest minority (mainly Hindu), stops.

Thirty years of bloody civil war ended in 2009, only for Rajapaksa to use all his power – which was enormous – to silence any criticism of his regime, turn Sri Lanka into one of the world’s most dangerous countries for any journalists who dare to question his deeds, and make post-war media continue their patriotic discourse.  Hate speech continued to be used by both politicians and the media  when referring to the ‘other side’.  The island remained heavily divided and according to many analysts and experts, Rajapaksa used his popularity to further alienate the Tamils. 

Get the trolls out! MDI to counter antisemitism in Europe PDF Print

Published: 15 July 2015

Region: Europe

Photo_credit_Andy_Cross_on_FlickrThe recently launched MDI project “Get the trolls out!” will counter incidents of antisemitic speech with arts, satire, and fact-based messages all across Europe.

Antisemitism in Europe is on the rise. In 2014 there was a dramatic increase in insults and physical attacks on Jewish people and institutions, with number doubling in several countries, a just released report by ECRI revealed.  Antagonism against the Jewish community escalated in coincidence with the flare up of the conflict in the Middle East last summer. But antisemitism does not always take the obvious forms of violence. A poll by YouGov earlier this year showed that almost half of British population holds antisemitic view.

Sensationalism and Stereotypes in Reporting on Domestic Violence PDF Print

Published: 1 July 2015

Country: Serbia

By Ivana Jelaca

Serbia_Domestic_ViolenceIn the first five months of this year, 26 women have been killed in Serbia. They have been killed by their close relatives, mostly by their (ex) partners. The escalation of violence towards women comparing to the last year, is a plea for reaction and a change. But the way that Serbian media report on gender based violence is predominantly sensationalist, reflecting wide use of gender stereotypes.

In addition, there is a tendency to neglect the media ethical codex by exposing names and other explicit details from people’s private lives, mostly irrelevant to the story. Some Serbian media outlets label victims as ‘prostitutes’ or ‘lovers’. They also try to relativize crimes and side with abusers through victim-blaming. Victims are presented to have provoked the crimes committed against them, thereby deserving to be abused.  Most of the media coverage also perpetuates the dominant stereotype of women’s subordinate position. On the other hand, attributes such as ‘rapist’, ‘monster’ and ‘killer’ are often used before attackers are proven to be guilty at the court.

CIMA and MDI: Strengthening Freedom of Expression in a Multicultural World PDF Print

Date: 9 June 2015

Region: Worldwide

panelFreedom of expression and its challenges in a multicultural world were the main topic of the event organised by the Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA) and the Media Diversity Institute (MDI). During an engaging discussion in Washington, panellists and the audience debated what are practical ways for strengthening freedom of expression, as well as what kind of social responsibility the media and journalists have when they report on events such as the attack on French magazine Charlie Hebdo?

MDI Executive Director Milica Pesic joined by dr Verica Rupar from Auckland University and Courtney Radsch from the Committee to Protect Journalists, also talked about the need to have inclusive journalism and reporting diversity included in curriculum of journalism schools? Panel held in Washington on 9 June was moderated by the BBC News journalist and presenter Razia Iqbal.

New UK Government to Vet Broadcast Media for Extremist Content PDF Print

Published: 27 May 2015

Country: UK

TV_Test_cardBritish government made it clear in what direction wants to take the country by proposing a set of legislation including the counter-terrorism bill targeting electronic media. Ofcom as the UK regulatory body would be given new powers to take actions against channels which broadcast extremist content, although it is unclear whether they will be able to intervene before or after transmission.

The Guardian wrote in its editorial that “pre-programme vetting is such a terrible idea that it is hard to know where to begin”. Mike Jempson of MediaWise told MDI that one of his concerns is matter of definition. “Who is to determine what is regarded as extremism?”

Caitlyn Jenner, a Hero of Transgender Community? PDF Print

Published: 20 May 2015*

Country: US

* At the time of the publishing of this article, Jenner still wanted to be reffered to as Bruce.

Bruce_JennerMedia in the US have been flooded with thousands of articles on Bruce Jenner’s transition. He wants to be reffered to as 'he' for now. The media spectacle reached its peak with Jenner’s two-hour interview which attracted over 17 million viewers and numerous social media posts expressing admiration for his ‘brave and heroic’ public stance. The Huffington Post described his coming out as ‘a breakthrough in our culture’.

But how Jenner’s coming out will affect trans* communities, especially the way media portray them? Will his public exposure in the setting of celebrity reality shows’ help the cause of transgender people without slipping into a danger of being commercialised and capitalised on?

How the Media Make Us Feel Good about Migrants PDF Print

Published: 12 May 2015

Region: Europe

By Adil Yilmaz

Migrants_BoatEuropean media outlets portrayed the death of hundreds of migrants in April as a great shock to Europe, as if the European Union were not aware of the issues concerning the highly dangerous journey undertaken by hundreds of refugees every day.

Mainstream media covered the story very much like a devastating natural disaster by describing the incident as a ‘tragedy’ and a ‘refugee drama’, a choice of language that reflects the supposed helplessness of benevolent Europe concerning the circumstances under which migrants are forced to travel to find refuge in ‘fortress Europe’.

Reporting from the Sahara on Dune Voices Website PDF Print

Published: 12 May 2015

Region: Morocco, Mauritania, Algeria, Mali, Libya

Dune_Voices_MauritaniaCan you imagine what a life might look alike in today’s Libya? Or how disabled women from Timbuktu manage to live with stigma following them on every step? Do the Jews in south-east Morocco feel they belong to the wider community or whether there is way to end slavery in some parts of Mauritania?

The answers to these questions and much more can be found on Dune Voices, a multimedia platform for unheard voices and communities in Mali, Mauritania, Algeria, Morocco and Libya. Articles and features produced and published on Dune Voices specialise in covering the topics of marginalised groups and minorities, vulnerable and forgotten by the mainstream media. They have been already republished on several other media outlets since the platform created by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) in 2014 has become a source of an accurate, independent and diverse reporting.


Seen by the King, but Invisible for the Media PDF Print

Published: 11 May 2015

Country: Morocco

Ouarzazate_2Once upon a time, there was a king. On a hot, sunny day he was walking on the streets of Ouarzazate, a southern Moroccan city nicknamed ‘the door of the desert’. The king spotted Hussein who was on his crutches. For Hussein, being disabled all his life meant a difficult life and an invisible one. So the king decided to give him a present: A car. He couldn’t drive, but at least he could rent it out as a taxi. Hussein was tricked into murky business with some taxi drivers, yet his story remained unheard, as disabled people in Morocco are mostly ignored by national mainstream media.

The story about Hussein and his royal car is not a tale, but a true story told by one of the civil society activists and citizen journalist in Ouarzazate, trained by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI). During the last visit to Morocco at the end of April 2015, the MDI team provided on-site consultancy and training for 15 activists and inspiring journalists. The focus was on a better usage of online platforms and social media in order to make people like Hussein heard in public.

Katie Hopkins: What is Still to Debate? PDF Print

Date: 24 April 2015

Country: UK

migrants_medLast Friday, The Sun newspaper published a controversial opinion piece by Katie Hopkins - a once reality-show participant who found her way as a pundit on celebrity issues and debates on immigration on some of the national TV and newspapers in the UK.

After the umpteenth tragic shipwreck of migrants in the Mediterranean, Hopkins, who is one of The Sun's columnists, wrote not only an anti-migrant piece completely lacking empathy, but she also spread racism, hatred, and even suggested to employ violent solutions against immigrants.

A Grand Finale: MDI Ends 3-year Programme in Egypt PDF Print

Date: 31 March 2015

Country: Egypt

Egypt_March_2015“The balance is simple: 200 journalists, 160 students, 30 editors, 20 journalism professors and more than 400,000 ‘consumers’ of the content produced over the last 3 years. Challenging but inspiring work!” This is how Doaa Kassem, the Media Diversity Institute’s (MDI) Egypt project manager, describes the hard labour she and her team invested in the successful implementation of MDI’s third multi-annual programme in the country which has been through many political, social and cultural changes during this period.

Doaa continued: “And we wanted to end it with a big bang – we organized an discussion to give an opportunity to the editors of the key Egyptian media to come with recommendations which would help all journalists deal with the challenges of reporting on terrorism.

"Media in the Balkans Worse than after the Wars" PDF Print

Date: 11 March 2015

Region: Western Balkans

Columbia_University_March_2015At the symposium dedicated to the state of the media in the Western Balkans held at Columbia University, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) chaired a panel. The symposium gathered journalists and media experts who were discussing the changes in the media since the end of the Yugoslav wars. Censorship and self-censorship in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Macedonia have already raised red flags among media monitors, investigative journalists, and foreign and local observers.

Therefore it was not surprising when the key note speaker at Columbia University, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Dunja Mijatovic declared that ‘freedom of the media in the Balkans is worse than after the wars in the ‘90s’.

From Doubt to Dialogue: MDI launches “Media & Security in Tunisia” Study PDF Print

Date: 14 March 2015

Country: Tunisia

Tunisia_Rafik_ChelliIn the beginning there was doubt. Now there is a dialogue’. This statement by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) Executive Director epitomises the work done in less than a year with more than 130 people - journalists, editors, security officials and security experts. They were interviewed to assess media practices in Tunisia related to reporting on security issues, conflict, and extremism.

The results were presented in the "Media & Security in Tunisia" Study which was launched at the conference held on 14 March in the Tunisian capital.

Algerian Media to Sign the Diversity Charter PDF Print

Date: 7 March 2015

Country: Algeria

Algeria_Roundtable_March_2015If you were born to unknown parents or you are a single mother, if you are immigrant or disabled or a member of an ethnic minority, there are big chances that media would not know how to report on the issues concerning you. Or they would not report on them at all. One  of the ways to improve media situation and to achieve a better representation of marginalised groups and cultural minorities is to sign the Diversity Charter. The Charter was created by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) as a guidance on ethical principles for reporting on marginalised communities.

The Diversity Charter, as well as inclusiveness of the Algerian media, were  the discussed at the MDI roundtable held in Algiers on 7 March.

Five Media Mistakes over Charlie Hebdo PDF Print

Published: 14 January 2015

Region: Worldwide

by Dasha Ilic

Germany_Protest_-_Charlie_HebdoThe satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo has featured the prophet Muhammad on its front cover once again. The Prophet is crying, just as did the cartoonist who made the cover. The headline says "All is forgiven".

As it has been only a week since the attack and the killings in Paris, some could question the magazine’s decision to put the Prophet on its cover again. But no one can deny the right to free speech in a secular state, as no one can avoid responsibility for the spoken and written word. Therefore, there are things that the world media could do and could have done differently in the coverage of the Charlie Hebdo killings and the events that have followed.

United in Diversity: Many Reasons, One Goal PDF Print

Dates: 5 – 11 December 2014

Country: Mauritania

Mauritania_training_Dec_2014School teacher, fishing captain, blogger, star TV anchor… People with very different professions and from different parts of Mauritania gathered in the capital Nouakchott where the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) organised a multimedia reporting workshop on 5 – 11 December. Although diverse in their professions, age, regional and cultural characteristics, the participants had a common goal – to improve reporting on their communities in Mauritania.

I want to change the way they look at us,’ said Mohammed Ag. ‘At least, if they could understand we need to be heard,’ said Haroune.  ‘They’ are the central authorities, most of the times opposed to the local communities. In order to give a voice to the voiceless in the Sahara, MDI specifically designed a multimedia course reaching out to both unskilled citizen reporters and experienced journalists.


Dune Voices: MDI launches Sahara multimedia platform PDF Print

Date: 13 December 2014

Countries: Mali, Mauritania, Algeria, Morocco and Libya

Algeria_UN_VoicesAfter months of preparation, when the platform’s team was put together, the editorial lines agreed, the name voted on and the initial host countries selected, the new web platform, Dune Voices, was launched in Casablanca on December 13.  The platform, envisaged as a bridge between social and traditional media, the first of its kind in North Africa, will be furnished with video, audio and online stories produced by MDI-trained citizen journalists who live in the Sahara desert.

‘In this way the authentic and autochthon voices from real people and the real Sahara will see the light of the day, something which does not happen often, neither in the countries which share the Sahara, nor outside of them’, said Dominique Thierry, MDI Programme Director and Head of



Unwanted & Discriminated by the Media: Refugees & Migrants in the Magreb PDF Print

Date: 29 November 2014

Country: Algeria

Algeria_Conference‘Welcome, Ebola and AIDS’ and ‘Africans create their Republic’ – these are just some of the headlines in the Algerian media about refugees and migrants. Discriminatory language and hate speech appear to be the norm in media coverage of these issues across the Magreb region.

Also, migrants and refugees coming from Sub-Saharan Africa are treated worse than those coming from the MENA region, explained Dr Nabila Bouchaala, speaking at a roundtable debate on ‘Media Coverage of Refugees in the Magreb’ organized by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) and its partner, Réseau Algérien pour la Défense des Droits des Enfants (NADA), on 29th of November in Algiers.

From Polarisation to Pluralisation - Celebration of Diversity at the University of Lebanon PDF Print

Date: 5 December 2014

Country: Lebanon, Beirut

Beirut_Conference‘We have all the reasons to celebrate diversity. Historically, Lebanon has been the place where dozens of cultures, religions, ethnic groups and languages have met, mixed and influenced each other’ – said Dr Adnan Sayyed Hussein, President of the University of Lebanon, opening a conference held in Beirut on 5th of December.

The event marked the end of a two-year project called “Towards an Inclusive and Responsible Media in Lebanon”, run by the Media Diversity Institute and its Lebanese partner the Maharat Foundation, an organisation working on building a more democratic society through freedom of expression.

MDI US Head of Operations at Columbia University PDF Print

Published: 29 November 2014

Countries: US, Serbia, Montenegro

Milka_Tadic_and_Marija_Sajkas_in_front_of_the_Columbia_University“The fall is coming, so the good housewives would do better if they return to the kitchen” – this comment was made by a Serbian politician Branko Ruzic talking about his female political opponent. Public remarks like this one were recently discussed at Columbia University in New York City, where MDI’s Director of Development and Operations Marija Sajkas was a guest speaker together with Milka Tadic Mijovic, U.S. correspondent of Montenegrin independent weekly “Monitor”.

MDI to partner with Chinese University PDF Print

Date: 30 September 2014

Country: China, Guangzhou

Screen_Shot_2014-10-06_at_16.12.19Sun Yat-Sen University based in the capital of the most economically prosperous Chinese province, Guangdong, and the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) are to develop a joint Inclusive Journalism and Social Harmony Programme aimed at encouraging a culture and forum among the region’s media actors, journalism educators and civil society organizations, that will build awareness and capacity for greater social and cultural inclusion through responsible reporting on the region’s diversity.

The partnership agreement was made during a two day visit by a MDI representative to the flourishing university, known for owning the world's fastest supercomputer Tianhe-2, worth almost half a million US dollars, as well as having the largest affiliated hospital system in China. Its School of Communication and Design is also the first university in China to establish a Civil Communication Research Center.

MDI joins UNESCO Media Literacy Global Alliance PDF Print

Date: 27 - 28 September 2014

Country:  China

Screen_Shot_2014-10-06_at_08.09.54"The world would be lost without information and intercultural dialogue would be impossible without the sharing of that information. This is where the importance of the media comes in". These were the introductory words of Dr Liu Binjie, the Dean of the Journalism School at Tsinghua University. The Beijing-based university was this year’s host of the UNESCO and UN Alliance of Civilisation’s  Media and Information Literacy (MIL) and Intercultural Dialogue Conference.

On 27 and 28  September, more than 200 Chinese and international participants exchanged experience in teaching and promoting critical thinking related to the media, and presented their research on either use of media or media content and discussed ways forward.

MDI hosts debate on Media & Security in Tunisia PDF Print

Published: 24 September 2014

Country: Tunisia

Screen_Shot_2014-10-06_at_08.12.03Top security spokespersons from the UK, USA and Tunisia shared 24 September their experience with the leading Tunisian media actors and media regulators in a one-day roundtable debate which attracted substantial media coverage.

How to report on security issues, conflict and extremism was the topic of the second in a series of MDI’s broader multi-stakeholder debates that are part of the project ‘Responsible and Free Reporting on Security Issues in Tunisia’. The event was organised in partnership with the National Union of Journalists of Tunisia, whose president Néji Bghouri welcomed the guests by calling for the introduction of a code of ethics to guide reporters in covering such issues. ‘We are very proud that the Revolution brought us Freedom of Expression. But, with the freedom comes responsibility’, said Bghouri. ‘For the time being we ask journalists to at least be cautious when approaching covering security issues; which terminology, which sources to use, how to check them. But, a more systematic approach is needed’.

MDI on London Live TV Asking for More Ethnic Diversity in the Media PDF Print

Published: 19 August 2014

Country: UK


A day after BSkyB pledged that by the end of next year, at least 20% of the stars and writers of its UK-originated TV shows will come from a black, Asian or other minority ethnic background; a Media Diversity Institute (MDI) representative appeared on London Live TV asking for a clearer strategy to implement these plans.

“We always hear that BBC, BSkyB and others are trying to have more diverse programmes, more representatives from Black, Asian and other ethnic minorities. But we at MDI wonder how they are actually going to do that? If it is so simple to employ more people with different backgrounds, then why haven’t they done it so far?” said Dasha Ilic from MDI.

Multi-stakeholder Dialogue on Security and Media in Tunisia PDF Print

Date: 25 June 2014

Country: Tunisia

Tunisia_-_Security_and_MediaBalancing fundamental human rights such as Freedom of Expression and Access to Information with responsibility and sensitivity in reporting on security issues presents a challenge for reporters in any society, let alone in a post-authoritarian, post-revolutionary, transitional Tunisia. This was one of the main points made at a roundtable entitled “Media Coverage of Security Issues during the Election Period”, organised in Tunis on 25 June.  The participants at the event included media and security experts, media and security service professionals, journalism educators, civil society representatives, as well as international experts.

The purpose of the discussion organised by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) was to create a confidential space for open and constructive dialogue between the key actors, so they have the opportunity to understand the perspectives and needs of the other parties, in particular ahead of the autumn elections in Tunisia.

Sexual Violence against Women in Algeria PDF Print

Date: 10 June 2014

Country: Algeria


The law allows rapists to walk free if they marry their victim – if she is under 18 years old. This is the case in Algeria and Tunisia. According to statistics in Algeria, more than 1,000 sexual assaults on women are recorded per year. Experts believe that these figures do not reflect the reality as many victims are too afraid or ashamed to report the crime to the police.

A conference on sexual violence against women in Algeria, which was held on 10th June 2014, was organised and executed by the Media Diversity Institute, in cooperation with “Femme en Communication” and “Reseau Wassila”. These organisations fight for greater gender equality in the country. Throughout the conference, many social taboos were challenged and a sincere discussion on this important issue took place.

Ehna Keda Webzine: Online Voice for Marginalized Groups in Egypt PDF Print

Published: 5 June 2014

Country: Egypt

egypt2According to some sources, the first steps towards online journalism have been made a decade ago. Still the journalists themselves as well as media experts and academics discuss the future of journalism and whether the web portals can replace the newspapers.

But the Egyptian TV channel for Education, Nile Television, has gone a step further inviting the editors of the webzine supported by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) to tell the story about the marginalized groups and how inclusive web can be.

Egyptian Journalists Awarded by MDI PDF Print

Published: 14 May 2014

Country: Egypt

MDI_Awards_JournalismEvery country is full of stories untold, problems unreported and people who have never been given the chance to have their voices heard.

Twelve young journalists in Egypt searched and discovered such stories and succeeded in bringing to the surface some of the biggest problems that Egyptian people have to deal with and the media continue to ignore.  And they have been awarded for that, after participating in the Media Diversity Institute’s Journalism Contest.

Why the BBC Should Not Tolerate Jeremy Clarkson PDF Print

milica_BBC_WHYSDebating whether BBC should sack one of its top TV presenters Jeremy Clarkson over his racist remarks, MDI Executive Director Milica Pesic said: “It is not about Clarkson, it is about BBC. I don’t know what Clarkson thinks, but I know what he said. He is the public figure and what he says off the record matters just as what he is saying on air”.

Pesic appeared on BBC World Have Your Say programme on Friday highlighting that ‘the BBC should have zero tolerance towards racist or discriminatory language or behaviour'.

Countering xenophobia with creativity: #OEOE PDF Print

Published: 10 April 2014

Countries: Greece, Hungary, Italy

puppetsGiant puppets, satirical cartoons, radio shows, and positive stories are the tools that the Media Diversity Institute’s project “Our Elections, Our Europe” (OEOE) is using to counter racism in the run up of the European parliament elections in Hungary, Greece and Italy.

Started in February, OEOE has spotted several incidents of xenophobic discourse by politicians. Whether it is the Northern League’s rhetoric against refugees who “live in luxurious hotel while Italians starve”, or the Jobbik party’s refusal to dismiss the words “criminal Gypsies”, or the Golden Dawn’s  Nazi salutes and symbols, the far-right party are alarmingly on the rise in Europe. Many fear that the next European parliament will have a majority of Eurosceptic extreme-right MEPs.

"Press Council is Not a Court" PDF Print

Date: 28 February 2014

Country: Morocco, Rabat

Morocco_Roundtable_February_2014As part of the efforts to discuss and explore the role of the National Press Council in Morocco, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) in collaboration with The National Syndicate of the Moroccan Press, organized a roundtable on 28 February 2014 in Rabat. Media experts and stakeholders, as well as journalists and editors, debated the violation of the journalistic ethics and to what extent it affects the freedom of expression.

Some of the questions raised at MDI roundtable in Rabat were the responsibility of media, how that responsibility is shared with the civil society and what is the best way for the Moroccan National Press Council to implement and regulate the code of ethics.

High Heels or Military Boots PDF Print

Date: 16 March 2013

Country: Egypt

enas_newInas Kamal Al-Deen Ramadan, a journalist at “Roz al Yousef” magazine recently awarded by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), was interviewed by the national TV in Egypt.

Appearing on the prime-time TV programe "On the name of Egypt", Inas discussed her award winning article about the willingness of some Egyptian girls to be enrolled at military academies in fields of infantry, air force and special forces just like men, and not only in the medical services and the media. Her article “Let high heels go to hell, long live the military boots” was published in “Roz al Yousef” magazine in December 2013 and won MDI award for the ‘Best Article on Women in Society’.

Migrants and Minorities - Anti-heroes of Russian Press PDF Print

Published: 27 February 2012

Country: Russia

russian_newspapers_smallMedia coverage of migrants, ethnic minorities and other vulnerable groups in Russia is mainly hostile and discriminatory. Sensational headlines like “‘Uzbeks raped a female pensioner” or “Illegal Tajik migrant killed his partner” are the most frequent way to manifest a xenophobic message.

'Anti-heroes’ of the Russian press are the Chechens, people from Caucasus and Muslims, while the LGBT community and its issues are covered in an unfriendly way. One of the trends in print and electronic media in Russia is “softer” hate speech, but these “soft forms” are effectively conveying discriminatory messages. These are the findings of the study conducted by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) in four Russian regions in second half of 2013.

MDI Report on Russian Media

Story Written at MDI Workshop Attracts the Attention of Algerian Officials PDF Print

Dates: 24 – 28 November 2013

Country: Algeria

algeria_november_2An article produced at a Media Diversity Institute journalism workshop in Algeria in November 2013 attracted the attention and positive reaction of the Ministry of Culture in Algeria.

One of the MDI trainees produced a story about the war orphans of the Algerian War of Independence who were raised by the state as the ballet dancers, but later, as they claimed, lost status and state benefits such as pensions.

Finalisation of a Project “Let the Roma Youth Be Heard” PDF Print

Published: 5 July 2013

Region: Europe

ostrava romani 1Let the Roma Youth Be Heard”, a project run by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) through 2012 and first half of 2013, has come to an end.

In the final stage of the project and in the partnership with Open Society Foundation (OSF), several articles and videos have been produced. They focused on the Roma communities living in Kosovo, Croatia and Czech Republic.

During the whole project, MDI provided a series of media training courses on storytelling, social media networking, shooting, editing and uploading for the young Roma, Gypsies and Travellers residing in the UK.

MDI Provides Inclusive Journalism Training in St Petersburg PDF Print

Dates: 28-29 May 2013

Country: Russia

st peters smilesThe Media Diversity Institute provided the training curriculum and the trainer for a workshop on responsible journalism on 28 and 29 May 2013 in Saint Petersburg.

The two-day workshop, “Responsible Journalisms:  Setting the Standards for Reporting on Social Diversity,” was organised by the Norwegian Union of Journalists and the Russian Union of Journalists.

The purpose of the workshops was to encourage journalists to see their societies as diverse, multicultural, pluralistic rather than homogeneous monocultures.

“Clean Living” Nominated for Samir Kassir Award PDF Print

Published: 6 June 2013

Region: Middle East

clean living filmThe short film "Clean Living”, supported by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), was nominated for the prestigious Samir Kassir Award. Ahmed Ateyya, the co-founder of Wojood Media Production which produced “Clean Living”, said that “it is an honour and a great achievement to be finalist in one of the most competitive journalism in the Middle East”.

He expressed his gratitude to the MDI team for supporting quality journalist, especially to the MDI trainer and journalist Richard Cookson.

How to Become an Influential TV Show in Egypt PDF Print

Published: 25 April 2013

Country: Egypt

awel el khayt 3The third episode of “Awel el Khayt”, TV programme produced by Belail Media Production and broadcast on ONTV in Egypt, is on air on Friday 3 May. This influential and ground-breaking TV programme is supported by the Media Diversity Institute.

In the combination of investigative journalism forms and a talk show, “Awel el Khayt” sheds a light on the negligence and corruption in the most important social and economic issues and political problems facing the community and affects the daily life of the Egyptian citizens. "Awel el Kheet” also addresses the problems of the marginalized groups and minorities in Egyptian society.

Debate on Media Role in Egypt’s Transition to Democracy PDF Print

Date: 15 April 2013

Country: Egypt

al ahzar uni 1The Media Diversity Institute, in partnership with the highly respected Al Azhar University in Cairo, organized a media forum under the title “Media and Parliament: Tools of Modern Democracy” on 15 April 2013 in Cairo.

The debate held at Al Azhar University was attended by an audience of around 150, including media professionals, students, researchers, journalism professors, NGO representatives, politicians and diplomats based in Cairo.

MDI and its Moroccan Partner Talk with the BBC PDF Print

Dates: 12-17 March 2013

Region: UK/Morocco

moroccans in the studioEight representatives from Morocco’s leading commercial radio station, Chada FM, participated in a study tour to London, between 12 and 17 March 2013, organised by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI).

As part of the visit, the Chada FM director, Rachid Hayeg, MDI Executive Director's, Milica Pesic and MDI Project Manager's in Morocco, Intissar Rachdi, were participants in the BBC World Service programme - Weekend.

MDI Supports Programme on Leading Egyptian TV PDF Print

Date: 2 March 2013

Region: Egypt

egypt tv showThe first episode of “Awel el Khait”, TV programme which is a combination of investigative journalism forms and a talk show, was aired on 2 March 2013 on Egyptian ONTV. “Awel el Khait” (“The beginning of a String”) will be on programme every first Saturday of every month from 7pm.

The first episode explored why the Egyptian government is not self-sufficient in a production of wheat.

Exclusive story produced at MDI training course PDF Print

Dates: 15-19 February 2013

Region: Egypt

egypt february exclusive 2The Egyptian politicians’ press conference was over but one dogged reporter was not finished. Mostafa Mahmoud El-Sherbieny, from Al Sabah newspaper, made his way over to one of the politicians, took him aside for a private chat and asked him some more questions.

The result was an exclusive story for his newspaper about a former presidential candidate threatening to leave the National Salvation Front, the opposition coalition.

A Hundred Articles, Several Videos and a Short Film in "Let the Roma Youth Be Heard" PDF Print

Published: 13 February 2013

Country: UK

roma project 1Media Diversity Institute is pleased to publicise the results of one year-long project “Let the Roma Youth Be Heard”. During 2012 MDI provided a series of media training courses on storytelling, social media networking, shooting, editing and uploading for the young Roma, Gypsies and Travellers residing in the UK.

As a result of that, 18 participants of the MDI project have produced stories and videos; they have learnt how to write a good article and how to make a short film. But maybe more importantly they have learnt how to enter into media and how to have their voices heard and their stories published and known.

Report on media coverage of diversity during Egypt’s Constitutional Referendum PDF Print

Published: 12 February 2013

Region: Egypt

egypt third study rashaThe Media Diversity Institute (MDI) launched its third study on how inclusive and diverse Egyptian media content is, this time focusing on the period immediately preceding, and during, the country’s Constitutional Referendum (November & December 2012).

The report monitored the private, independent and state-owned media. The MDI team, led by Dr Rasha Abdulla from the American University in Cairo, has concluded that diversity issues are still largely being ignored in the Egyptian media.

This is alarming, especially knowing that the figures in the previous two reports didn’t demonstrate a good representation of the diversity within Egyptian society. The third report on diversity coverage in the Egyptian media shows that even the very weak representation of minority groups that did exist is getting slimmer.

The Only Way is Ethics, say Moroccan Journalists PDF Print

Published: 1 February 2013

Country: Morocco, Oujda

oujda 2How can a 15-mile journey take 30 hours and involve taxis, trains and a flight? Why would someone end up in prison for two months for visiting his daughter? Why would a woman have to get in touch with smugglers if she wanted to go to her mother’s funeral?

These were some of the questions answered in an article about families divided by the Moroccan-Algerian border. The article was written during the workshop organised by Media Diversity Institute in Oujda at the end of January.

MDI Training on Parliamentary Reporting in Egypt PDF Print

Dates: 16-20 December 2012

Country: Egypt, Cairo

cairo_parliament_reporting_1Media Diversity Institute has organised a workshop for Egyptian journalists on how to report on Parliament and the issues debated in Parliament. The participants in MDI workshop were 14 journalists from Egypt who also had an opportunity to compare and exchange the experience in political reporting in the UK and Egypt. One of the objectives of the workshop held in Cairo in December 2012 was to understand the importance of inclusive political debates.

The trainers, Mike Jempson and Ramy Mohsen, have organised sessions on a new way of Parliament reporting, writing skills,  profiling politicians and political parties, as well as covering elections and compering the experience of political reporting in the UK with the situation in Egypt.

A short film by Let the Roma Youth be Heard trainees PDF Print

Dates: 15-16 December 2012

Country: UK, London

roma_trainingMedia Diversity Institute training - "Let the Roma Youth Be Heard" - has been finalised in December 2012. As a result of three-part MDI media training for young Roma, Gypsies and Travellers residing in the UK, a short film has been produced as well as many clips and written stories.

MDI's media training aimed to breathe life into the phrase “in order to challenge the media, you have to become the media” by quickly giving its participants the skills to tell their community’s stories.

MDI Media Relations and Advocacy Workshops PDF Print

Date: 1-3 December and 4-6 December 2012

Country: Egypt, Cairo and Menia

By Nick Carter

egypt_village_from_flickrThere's a village in rural Egypt where the children have to walk at least 3km to get to school. It’s been built in the wrong place. The children want to be educated and they make the trek every day. Its tiring for them - and the shortest route involves crossing agricultural land which upsets the farmer and there's a chance they might disturb the odd snake.

The first year the school opened the exam results were poor - tiredness was one of the factors affecting the children's performance.

Villagers have tried asking the authorities for a bus to make the journey easier, but to no avail.

Egyptian journalism students to produce a website PDF Print

Date:  26-30 November 2012

Country: Egypt

By Milica Pesic

Webzine_2With the support of the Media Diversity Institute, Egyptian journalism students will produce a website covering political issues. The website is named "Ahna Keda" – The Way We Are – ( and it expresses the need for citizens to be heard and seen by the media regardless of their political, social and cultural background.

Fifteen journalism students from six Egyptian universities will be responsible for writing articles for the website, as well as for editing of the content and management of all aspects of the site.

MDI Training: European Twinning and Integration PDF Print

Date: 24 November 2012

Country: UK, Bristol

twinning_eu_picMedia Diversity Institute (MDI) has held a training called “European Twinning and Integration - Sharing Experience and Exploring Funding".

The aim of one day technical training funded by the European Union and supported by Bristol International Twinning Association (BITA) was to promote the potential of town twinning as a means of encouraging understanding between different groups and cultures as well as to promote peace and development through European towns and cities working together and supporting each other.

At the openning of the event in Bristol, sir Graham Watson, member of European Parliament for the South West of England and Gibraltar, thanked MDI as "the people who build a sense of the community across the continent".

"Let the Roma Youth be Heard" Media Training PDF Print

DATE: 8 - 9 September 20


romap2During the media training "Let the Roma Youth Be Heard" organised by the Media Diversity Institute, 16 young Roma, Gypsies and Travellers residing in the UK, have produced stories and videos available on YouTube channel.

“When you become famous reporters, please don’t forget that you made your first journalistic steps with Media Diversity Institute”, wrote Milica Pesic, MDI’s Executive Director, in her message to the trainees.

MDI training yields a professional success story: Safaa Saleh PDF Print

salmasmallPublished: 10 June 2012

Country: Egypt

An MDI trainee, Safaa Saleh, has turned out to be a successful professional feature stories journalist writing for one of the private mainstream newspapers in Egypt, Al Massry Al Yom. Safaa received training from MDI in 2010.

MDI Trainee makes Front Page of Moroccan Le Soir PDF Print

LeSoirSNIPPublished: 26 June 2012

Region: Morocco

A feature article about the growing number of racist attacks on sub-Saharan Africans in Rabat and Casablanca, produced during a Media Diversity Institute training course, was published on the front page of Moroccan national paper ‘Le Soir’.

Migrants & Journalists Team Up on TV & Radio Production Course in Greece PDF Print

studio_smallEvent Dates: 14 - 23 May 2012

Region: Thessaloniki, Greece

Eight stories about the experience of migrants in Greece were broadcast on TV100, a TV channel serving northern Greece, following a TV & radio production training course on migration and diversity, organised jointly by the Media Diversity Institute and Symβiosis, in partnership with TV100, between 14 – 23 May 2012.

During the 10 day training course, 8 migrants were taught how to produce TV & radio news programmes, and were mentored by TV100 journalists. This learning by doing training for migrants and journalists gave the participants the opportunity to exchange experiences, work together and get to understand diversity through practicing it.

Egyptian journalists face tough choices during MDI training PDF Print

egyptjunepicEvent dates: 3 – 9 June 2012

By Richard Cookson

You are lost at sea. It’s cold and dark, and huge waves are washing over the side of your life-raft. There are 15 other people in the little boat but it’s only designed for 10 and sinking fast. It’s a terrible situation, but to save yourselves you are going to have to decide which five people to throw overboard...

From Corruption to Racism - Moroccan Journalists Tackle Tricky Issues During MDI Training PDF Print


Dates: 28 May – 1 June 2012

Region: Casablanca, Morocco

By Richard Cookson

Imagine that you are a photographer on a small local newspaper. The country’s biggest manufacturer of football kit is based in your home-town and is your paper’s largest advertiser. One day, the head of the football company calls you and asks you not to take any more photographs that show equipment made by his rivals. If you do as he says, he promises you a week-long luxury holiday; if you refuse, he will withdraw all of his advertising, which will spell the end of the paper. What do you do?

Study on media coverage of ethnicity & religion in Europe PDF Print

ejistudycoverpicPosted: 31 May 2012

Region: European Union

What are the key ingredients of good examples of media coverage of ethnicity and religion? Journalism practices that are based on in-depth reporting, providing background information, explaining legal contexts, considering the impact, giving a voice to the voiceless, showing respect, raising awareness about diversity, avoiding stereotypes, taking a stand on discrimination, moving beyond the event and minimizing harm.

This is one of the main findings of the study “Getting the facts right: reporting ethnicity and religion” conducted by the Media Diversity Institute in partnership with the International Federation of Journalists and ARTICLE 19.

MDI provides onsite consultancy in media relations for European NGOs combating discrimination PDF Print


Dates: April-May 2012

Region: EU

The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) provided onsite consultancy in media relations for four European NGOs during April and May 2012. Led by experienced consultants and BBC journalists Tim Grout-Smith and Lily Poberezhska, the aim of the onsite consultancies was to provide tailored advice to the NGOs on how to use the media more effectively to assist them in combating discrimination.

MDI trains Moroccan NGO activists how to improve media coverage of social issues PDF Print


Event date: 18 – 20 May 2012

Country: Morocco

By Lesley Abdela

The Media Diversity Institute (MDI) organised a three day workshop in Marrakech, Morocco, between 18 – 20 May 2012, aimed at NGO activists willing to learn more about how to gather media attention as related to the particular social issues they work with. The course was led by Lesley Abdela, an international media relations expert and journalist, and Safi Naciri, Editor-in-Chief at Moroccan SNRT National Radio.

Celebrating World Press Freedom Day in Morocco PDF Print


Event date: 3 May 2012

Country: Morocco

‘Media between freedom and responsibility’ was the subject of a round table debate organized by the Media Diversity Institute in Rabat, Morocco, in collaboration with the Moroccan Centre for Research & Studies in the field of Human Rights and the Media, on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day 2012. 

MDI Responsible Journalism Course in Tangier PDF Print

tangier2Dates: 20-24 March 2012

Region: Tangier, Morocco

18 regional print and web journalists gathered in Tangier, Morocco, between 20-24 March 2012, for a five day Responsible Journalism course, organised by the Media Diversity Institute. They were five days of intense and animated discussions on the rules, dangers, risks, pitfalls, and duties and responsibilities of the profession.

MDI Provides Media Relations Training For Moroccan NGOs Representing Minority Groups PDF Print

tangierngo2Dates: 16-18 March 2012

Region: Tangier, Morocco

How to organise a press conference? How to write a press release? How to answer journalists' questions on radio? Or television? How to launch an effective media campaign? The 16 representatives of Moroccan civil society organisations who took part in a Media Relations workshop in Tangier, between 16-18 March 2012, organised by the Media Diversity Institute, now have the answers.

MA in Diversity and the Media: MDI in Partnership with Westminster University PDF Print

uowandmdiCourse starts: September 2013

Region: UK & Worldwide

The application process for the Masters course in ‘Diversity and the Media’ 2013-2014 is now open.

To apply for this highly innovative new course, follow the link for the Postgraduate Students at University of Westminster.

The highly innovative course developed by the Media Diversity Institute and the University of Westminster will give students an opportunity to analyse the role of the media in social construction and get a critical understanding of journalistic practices that impact upon these processes.



MDI workshop in Casablanca for Radio Journalists PDF Print

mworkshop1Published: 4 January 2012

Region: Morocco, MENA

With the Arab Spring in the background, new constitutional arrangements to be implemented and the back stage negotiations to form a new government led by an Islamist prime minister for the first time ever, the political environment could not have been any better to motivate and inspire the 13 young radio journalists who participated in a 5 day Responsible Journalism training course in Casablanca from 17-21 December 2012, organised by the Media Diversity Institute.

Media Relations Training for NGOs Combating Discrimination PDF Print


Event date: 27 & 28 October 2011

Region: EU

The Media Diversity Institute provided media relations training for 16 Non-Governmental Organisations from across the European Union, on 27 & 28 October 2011, in London. The training was intended to help the NGOs learn how to use the media to assist them in their work of combating discrimination.

Experienced trainers and BBC journalists, Tim Grout-Smith and Lily Poberezhska, led the workshop, providing mainly hands-on practical training. Topics covered included: what journalists want, selecting media friendly aspects of NGO work, clarity of language and message creation and presentation. The training was interactive with many group exercises, culminating in individual on-camera interview practise.

Morocco Faces up to Challenge of Creating Inclusive Media PDF Print

picture 1Published: 4 October 2011

Country: Morocco

The spirit of change in Morocco, which recently saw Constitutional change to recognise political, social and cultural diversity as well as media freedom, will only deliver greater democracy if all voices in the country are heard in the debate about the future say media and policy leaders.

A Degree of Diversity in Teaching for MENA Journalism Students PDF Print

tunisworkshopPublished: 30 September 2011

Region: MENA

The movement to bring democracy and change across the Middle East means giving citizens a voice and open discussion of diversity issues through inclusive public debates say leading academics from the region.

A group of journalism and communication researchers and teachers from  seven Middle East and North African countries and South Sudan met to discuss these challenges at a Media Diversity Institute (MDI) workshop in Tunis on 23-25 September.

Giving voice to the dispossessed PDF Print

egyptianwoman2by Abeer El Saady & Mike Jempson

Published: 16 September 2011

Under the guidance of MDI trainers, fifteen young online and print journalists in Egypt are developing new angles on the long awaited elections. Operating under effective martial-law, where even querying the timing of the ballot could land them in a military court, they have set out to discover what the vote might mean to the country’s marginalised groups. Their editors have promised to publish the features they produce.

This is the first group of journalists which will, over the following 2 years, produce some 100 articles voicing the Egyptians who have never had an opportunity to have a say about their common future.  The story production is part of a broader MDI programme funded by SIDA.

MDI Media Relations Workshop for NGOs from New EU States PDF Print

mdiworkshoplondon1Event date: 14 & 15 July 2011

Region: EU

The Media Diversity Institute held a workshop on media relations for 15 Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) from New EU States, on July 14th and 15th, 2011, in London. The training was intended to help the NGO’s learn how to use the media to assist them in their work of combating discrimination.

Cairo violence proves need for MDI course on reporting religion PDF Print

violence in CairoPosted: 10 May 2011

Region: Egypt

Twelve people were reportedly killed and 180 wounded in clashes between Muslims and Christians in Cairo on 7 May 2011. A Coptic church in the Imbaba neighborhood was burned down after rumors, which turned out to be false, that a Christian woman was being held inside the church and prevented from converting to Islam.

It’s this kind of event that eleven young journalists were trained to report on during a five-day course in Cairo, run by the Media Diversity Institute, just a week before the tragic events unfolded.  The training was designed to help the participants develop their skills in reporting on religion. Three days of teaching, debate and discussion in the classroom were designed to help them explore, understand and discuss the issues and possible tensions around reporting the full range of religions and beliefs in Egypt.

South Sudanese journalists trained to give a voice to the voiceless PDF Print

Posted: 3 December 2010/Region: Juba, South Sudan

Sixteen journalists from across South Sudan received training at a workshop organised by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) and its local partner, the Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS), in Juba, South Sudan, between 24 November and 3 December 2010. The ten day Inclusive Journalism training course was lead by Sorious Samura, acclaimed British-Sierra Leonean documentary film maker, and Albino Okeny Olak, an experienced South Sudanese editor and communications specialist for the World Bank.

Debate on media’s role in good governance in a post-referendum South Sudan PDF Print

Posted: 29 November 2010

Region: Juba, South Sudan

The Union of Journalists of South Sudan (UJOSS) in cooperation with the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) organised a roundtable debate entitled ‘Will my voice be heard in the new South Sudan? - The Role of Leaders and the Media in post-referendum South Sudan’, on 26 November 2010, in Juba, South Sudan.

Indonesian Journalism Academics to teach Reporting Diversity Courses PDF Print

Date: November 2010

Country: Indonesia

With support from the Open Society Foundation, the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) organised a Reporting Diversity Curricula Development Workshop for 17 journalism academics from 7 universities across Java, between 10-13 November 2010. UK academics from universities such as Cardiff and Westminster demonstrated theory and practice based modules that they use to teach topics such as ‘Media and Religion’, ‘Media and Gender’, ‘Media and Diaspora’ or ‘Media and Diversity’.

Participants were most interested in the inter-active exercises that were demonstrated, which are still a rarity as a method used by Indonesian academics. “Most of the courses at our journalism and communication departments are still very theory-based, and not very much in tune with time”, said Dr Ade Armando, the workshop moderator, who teaches at Paramadina University. This was also one of the reasons why MDI brought editors from leading Indonesian media outlets to tell the academics what kind of reporters they need in their newsrooms.

Iraqi and Palestinian Refugee Issues addressed at workshop for Syrian Journalists PDF Print

Dates: 25-27 October 2010syria01

Country: Syria

At a three-day workshop, held 25-27 October 2010 in Damascus, some 30 reporters discussed with representatives from the UNHCR the obstacles Iraqi and Palestinian refugees face in their everyday lives in Syria. The purpose of the course was to help journalists develop their professional skills to better represent the issues of refugees in Syria through fair, well-researched and sensitive coverage; and to develop ideas for features that will offer the Syrian public fuller and more accurate information on refugees in their country.

The workshop was organised by the Media Diversity Institute with the support of the UNHCR in Syria. Two prominent trainers, Abdelouahhab Errami, Professor at the prestigious ISIC Moroccan Journalism Institute and Thabet Al Salem, a leading Syrian media consultant and journalist, used inter-active exercises, films and guest speakers in order to convince the trainees that it is important to cover refugees issues sensitively and that their deeply moving stories are very newsworthy.

TV Talk show on Freedom of Expression produced by MDI Azeri trainees PDF Print

Dates: September 2010azeri001

Country: Azerbaijan

Freedom of expression in Azerbaijan was the central theme of a television production training exercise held in Baku, between 15-24 September 2010, and co-organised by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI). The trainees, TV reporters from government-controlled and independent stations across the country, had the task of producing a television talk show including filmed reports related this topic. After two days of training, the group filmed interviews with key witnesses on access to information and the use by journalists of anonymous or unidentified sources, a key area of journalistic ethics. Then panellists came together in a studio at the Azeri Media Centre, with members of the public, to discuss both topics in a recording for television.  The programme was broadcast on Channel-13 TV ( and  Objective TV (

‘Tobacco Girls’ article produced at MDI training wins award PDF Print

Tobacco GirlsPosted: June 17, 2010

Country: Egypt

‘Tobacco girls’ is a shocking article by Safaa Saleh of the harmful working conditions of many Egyptian girls in the Al-Warda tobacco factory, in Egypt. Through this article Safaa Saleh brings us inside the unexplored halls of one of the biggest tobacco production factories, pretending to be one of the new workers herself and documenting the everyday life of many young girls aged from 9 to 22, who are often forced to leave the education system to go to work in such unhealthy environments.

This brave article won the 2010 Samir Kassir Award for Freedom of the Press, in the category “best investigative report”. Safaa Saleh, the article’s author, is an Egyptian journalist currently writing for Al-Ousbouh; she previously worked with Al-Yaoum and the Jeel Al-Ghad, in Egypt.  

The ‘Tobacco Girls’ article was originally produced as part of a training course for journalists organised by the Media Diversity Institute in Egypt, and published in Arabic in the newspaper Al-Ousbouh on the 11 December 2009. The article can be viewed in English by downloading the booklet of all the articles produced at MDI training courses in Egypt - Click here

Media & NGOs meet to improve media coverage of diversity PDF Print

Antonia Meszaros“Funding for media organisations is a problem. It would be useful if NGOs could help media outlets realise what funding is out there that they could go for and come up with ideas that could be applied for jointly, as in a media organisation together with an NGO, as well as to come to us [the media] with specific human stories that we can do, stories that are pretty much already set up, so that the overworked journalist does not actually have to do that much” said Antonia Meszaros, a news anchor on Hungarian TV, as she detailed some of the ways that NGOs representing discriminated groups could help the media to improve coverage of diversity.

This was just one of many insightful presentations at the ‘Media for Diversity in New EU Countries’ Conference, held in Bucharest on 28-30 May 2010.  Leslie Hawke, co-founder of Asociatia Ovidiu Rom, an NGO working to improve the situation of Roma children in Romania, and mother of the actor Ethan Hawke, gave a keynote speech detailing a World Bank Report stating that if the Roma community were not included more in society in new EU countries, particularly in relation to education, then it would have a significant detrimental impact on the economies of those countries.

Azeri TV journalists trained in covering diversity PDF Print

AzeriJournoFireA burning issue…

Two fire engines roared past us, towards the thick black smoke pouring out of an abandoned brick factory just a few hundred metres away. As the children we’d just been interviewing looked on, Sabina straightened her hair and started her piece to the TV camera. “For the 150 or so children who live in this settlement, this is their playground,” she said, gesturing around her. “Behind me, a derelict factory that has just burst into flames, to my left a dangerous lake where two people have drowned, and here to my right a rubbish dump…”

Sabina and her five-strong team were taking part in a reporting project for TV journalists organised by the Media Diversity Institute and Yeni Nesil, in Azerbaijan. They had come to a makeshift settlement in the capital city, Baku, to report on the perilous living conditions for the children of internally displaced people.

The 10-day course, in May 2010, was designed to help the participants develop their skills in covering groups in Azeri society that are often overlooked by mainstream media coverage. Eight TV journalists had initially signed up for the course, but another five from the state broadcaster, Az TV, had asked if they could join the team too, the day before the training started. So the now 13-strong group had been divided into three teams and each sent off to research, film and edit a short film. This learning-by-doing would help them explore, understand and discuss issues around discrimination based on race, ethnicity, religion, age, gender, physical or mental ability, legal status and sexual orientation.

Moroccan radio journalists explore diversity issues PDF Print

TRPMar10hallwayPosted: April 8, 2010

Country: Morocco

“As a journalist, having to report objectively, isn’t it like being deprived of freedom?” asked one of the participants of the Inclusive Journalism radio training course organised by the Media Diversity Institute, in Marrakech, Morocco, at the end of March 2010.

That central question set the tone for a week of lively discussions on diversity issues, inclusive journalism, prejudices in the media, how to give a say to those who are usually ignored, what is the role of journalists in society and more importantly what are their responsibilities.  Journalism ethics is of course a perfect academic topic, but it has only a limited value if it is not put into practice.

The course participants were asked to confront their own prejudices – an enriching but sometimes unpleasant process – by meeting representatives of civil society organisations and by producing topical radio features of their choice which had to include “real people” and cover as many angles as possible.

The Media & Civil Society debate ‘Islam and Radicalization’ in Morocco PDF Print

RT_250310_Milica_GhaffarDate: 25 March 2010

Country: Morocco

At a roundtable discussion, organized by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI), in Morocco on 25 March 2010, the media, academics & intellectuals debated the subject of ‘Islam and Radicalization’. The event was organised in cooperation with Nawafid Cultural Magazine.

The event was opened by Milica Pesic, MDI executive director, who explained MDI’s objective of encouraging fair, accurate, inclusive and sensitive media coverage in order to promote understanding between different groups and cultures. She also introduced the MDI project in Morocco and explained that organizing events such as this roundtable discussion encouraged open discussion that aimed at creating an atmosphere of communication and understanding.

Young Egyptian journalists study media & diversity in the UK PDF Print

EgyptLondonGuardianFour young Egyptian journalists participated in a conference and study tour exploring inclusive journalism, between 24-27 February 2010, in London. The event, organised by the Media Diversity Institute, called “Inclusive Media for Inclusive Societies” was part of a two year programme to support a more responsible and inclusive media in Egypt, funded by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The opening session included a keynote speech by Lesley Abdela MBE, UK Woman Political Journalist of the year 2009, and a panel debate on how responsible and inclusive the British media is, particularly in relation to coverage of the Middle East & North Africa and the Muslim community in the UK. The panellists included Sharif Hikmat Nashashibi, Director of Arab Media Watch, Nick Carter from the Society of Editors, James Brandon, from the Quilliam Foundation, and Professor Robert Pinker from the Press Complaints Commission.

EgyptLondonChannel4The 4-day event also included visits to media organisations such as the BBC Diversity Department, Channel 4 Television, and the Guardian newspaper, as well as leading NGOs such as Article 19 and Index on Censorship.

Moroccan editors study media & diversity in the UK PDF Print

MDMCFeb10Ch4a2Twenty two of Morocco’s leading media owners and editors gathered in London on 25-26 February 2010, to attend a conference and study tour exploring Inclusive Journalism.

The event, organised by the Media Diversity Institute, called “Inclusive Media for Inclusive Societies” is part of a two year programme to support a more responsible and inclusive media in Morocco, funded by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The opening session included a keynote speech by Lesley Abdela MBE, UK Woman Political Journalist of the year 2009, and a panel debate on how responsible and inclusive the British media is, particularly in relation to coverage of the Middle East & North Africa and the Muslim community in the UK. The panellists included Sharif Hikmat Nashashibi, Director of Arab Media Watch, Nick Carter from the Society of Editors, James Brandon, from the Quilliam Foundation, and Professor Robert Pinker from the Press Complaints Commission.

The two-day event also included visits to the BBC Diversity Department, BBC Arabic Service, Channel 4 Television, and the Guardian newspaper.

‘Seeing the Others’ – an insight into the Media Diversity Institute's work in Egypt, 2008-2010 PDF Print

Colorful Pigments 2The ‘Seeing the Others’ booklet offers an insight into the Media Diversity Institute project titled ‘Reporting Diversity: a media programme to promote inter-community dialogue and moderate voices as a means to prevent religious radicalization in Egypt’, in which Egyptian journalism professors, journalism students and journalists participated, during 2008-2010.

The project was set up to advance journalism education and journalism skills through hands-on production training for practicing journalists and through the development and implementation of specialized university curricula, related to responsible reporting on social and cultural diversity in general, and religious diversity in particular. 

The booklet contains comments from project participants and all of the newspaper articles on diversity issues produced during the training courses for journalists. All of the articles were published in the newspapers from which the trainees came during 2009-2010.

For further information contact Email With Border v1.6

 MDI Egypt 2008-10 Booklet EN v.1.5.pdf

Moroccan journalists explore Inclusive Journalism PDF Print

‘Before you write about me, walk a mile in my shoes…’

XavierIt’s not every day that mosquitoes, camels and cats get together to talk about that day’s news headlines – but that’s what happened in February 2010 at a training course for Moroccan journalists in Tangier, run by the Media Diversity Institute.

The 21-strong group had been divided into teams, assigned an animal and asked to create the front page of a newspaper reporting the news that a powerful developer was about to start work building a luxury holiday complex in an environmentally sensitive area. The developer announced that he was going to use pesticide to kill all of the mosquitoes and offer his guests camel rides – so each animal group had a unique take on the news.

The aim was to encourage the journalists to discuss how they could report this news fairly and accurately, while also expressing their own view of the proposals and reflecting others’ perspectives – a challenging task. Taking the discussion out of the human world and into an imaginary one helps the participants think more objectively and creatively about some of the cornerstones of journalism, such as the relationship between different opinions and ‘truth’, how conflicting viewpoints can be fairly reported, the importance of multiple sources, and the distinction between news and opinion.

Young Moroccan Radio Journalists produce stories on diversity PDF Print

Posted on: 5 February 2010

Country: Morocco

yan2 copyA drug addict musician, an AIDS patient, a single pregnant woman, a member of an extremist Islamic movement, a Berber magician, a Moroccan Jew who emigrated to Israel, an atheist, a millionaire from the city of Fes, an American gay doctor, his partner, a Sub-Saharan immigrant and a prostitute are all drifting at sea in a lifeboat. There is not enough food & water for all of them. They have to decide who will be thrown into the shark infested waters.

That was one of the role play sessions in a 10 day production oriented training course for young Moroccan radio journalists, run by former BBC journalists Jean-Michel Duffrene and Arjum Wajid, and Editor in Chief at Moroccan SNRT National Radio, Safi Naciri. The course was held in Casablanca from 23 January to 1 February 2010, and organized by the London-based Media Diversity Institute.

The outcome of the lifeboat role play session will not be revealed but, the participants were utterly shocked when they realized that a game can be so revealing and were even worried that the experience proved that their prejudices were stronger than their survival instincts.

The objective of the training programme was to encourage radio reporters to look at and reflect their society as it actually is: diverse, multi-cultural, pluralistic, multi-ethnic, and multi-religious rather than homogeneous and monolithic. The aim was to help journalists develop their professional skills to better represent this diversity in society through fair, balanced, well-researched, properly sourced, and prejudice-free coverage. They were asked to develop new ideas and innovative editorial approaches for features, packages, debates, and reports that truly reflect the diversity of life in Moroccan society today.

Egyptian journalists give voice to the voiceless PDF Print

Posted: 4 January 2010

Egypt TRP disability picCountry: Egypt

With the help of the Media Diversity Institute, young Egyptian journalists are making a mark in the country’s over-crowded media market by producing stories usually ignored by more well established reporters.  They look for marginalized individuals and communities believing ‘every person has a story to tell’, and are also convinced that every voice matters.

Over the last two months, 10 young reporters from different newspapers - including Al-Ahram daily and weekly, Watani, El-Dostor, El-Wafd, El-Massry El-Youm, El-Youm El-Sabei, and El-Osbou - took part in a training course organised by the Media Diversity Institute. During the course, they debated the reasons for inclusive reporting, the ethical issues around diversity coverage and produced the stories covering issues such as disability, women’s rights and refugees (the articles can be downloaded below).  The majority of the articles have already been published in the participating newspapers. More than 150 reporters applied to take part.  This is the second such training course provided by MDI in Egypt, supported by the UK Embassy in Cairo. For further information contact Email With Border v1.6

 MDI Egypt Articles Nov 2009.pdf

First regional debate on the Media and Regionalization in Morocco held in Marrakesh PDF Print

Date: 19 December 2009

Marra RTCountry: Morocco

The intellectual journal 'Nawafid' together with the UK-based Media Diversity Institute (MDI) invited around 30 leading professionals from the world of law, media, education and civil society to participate in a discussion on 'The Media and Regionalization in Morocco', held in Marrakesh on 19 December 2009.

The event was opened by former Moroccan Minister of Education, Prof Abdellah Saaf. Fifteen participants provided further comment. One key theme in the debate was the question on how far the local authorities had been consulted to ensure they were ready to accept increased responsibility and whether the decentralization process was genuine or a further form of central control.


Date: 16-18 December 2009

Marra CSO2Country: Morocco

Over 25 civil society activists from four Maghreb countries attended a three-day seminar on strategic communications in Marrakesh in December.

The seminar was organized by the London-based Media Diversity Institute, as part of a two-year responsible journalism pilot project in Morocco. The international activists included a wide range of civil society groups including human rights lawyers from Algeria, family planning and disability specialists from Tunisia, and anti-corruption and NGO support organizations from Mauritania.

The Moroccan organizations were primarily from local civil society associations in and around Marrakech, Tahenaout, Ouarzazate, Souira and Tata. Many of these organizations were planning events in the coming weeks, or had experienced problems in getting their messages across to a wide variety of audiences. One CSO based 75 kilometers outside Ouarzazate was attempting to convince men in 10 remote villages on the benefits of allowing their wives and daughters to read, with great success. One activist shared her problems in persuading a Maghreb Minister of Education to accept and act upon physical abuse against children in schools. By working with the activist through the communication tools, international trainer Tim Wiliams reworked the approach so that the activist could approach the minister again with more achievable objectives, which would ultimately move her towards her goals.

Study on Media & Diversity in Europe PDF Print

Media4Diversity ImagePosted: 30 September 2009

Region/Country: Europe

The Study on Media & Diversity publication ‘Media4Diversity - Taking the Pulse of Diversity in the Media’ is now available. The Study on Media & Diversity has identified over 150 initiatives by, or about, the media that counter discrimination and promote diversity, across Europe. From the 150, 30 selected examples have been included in the final publication together with analysis and recommendations for future action based on the research. The study was conducted by the Media Diversity Institute, Internews Europe and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), and commissioned by the European Commission.

Egyptian academics develop Reporting Diversity Curricula with Media Diversity Institute support PDF Print

Date:  2009

Region/Country: Egypt

Three academics from Cairo University, and three from other Egyptian academic institutions developed Reporting Diversity courses, with the support of the Media Diversity Institute, which they now teach at their universities to journalism students. They were mentored in the development of the courses, by Naomi Sakr and Rasha Abdullah, two prominent academics from the UK and Egypt respectively, during 2009. The mentoring programme was organised by the Media Diversity Institute, with the support of the UK Embassy in Cairo. For more info contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Azeri journalists produce articles on diversity PDF Print

Date: 13-22 October 2009

Region/Country: Azerbaijan

Eight young Azeri journalists participated in a production orientated training event, organised by the Media Diversity Institute in Baku between October 13-22, 2009. With help from experienced UK and local tutors, they produced articles on diversity issues that were placed in leading Azeri newspapers in the form of a supplement.

The course is part of a 2-year project, jointly managed by Article 19 and MDI, designed to strengthen freedom of expression (FoE) in Azerbaijan through advocacy for legal reform, in particular abolition of criminal defamation, and capacity building of the media. The project is funded by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For more info contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Young Moroccan Journalists trained in Inclusive Journalism PDF Print

Date:  2-4 November 2009

Morocco IJW Nov09Region/Country: Morocco

Young journalists in Morocco participated in a 3 day workshop on Inclusive Journalism, between 2-4 November 2009. The course was organized by the Media Diversity Institute and run by Richard Cookson, a journalist working for UK TV Channel 4, and Moroccan journalist Mounia Belafia, who contributes to France 24. Topics discussed included: the importance of giving voices to all segments of society, not only the mainstream; the importance of alternative sources (not only official ones); basic principles of reporting diversity; managing prejudice, avoiding stereotypes and the use of language; and the importance of building bridges with civil society.

‘Inclusive Media for Inclusive Societies’ conference report 2009 PDF Print

IMIS Booklet Cover ImageDate: July 2009

Country: Morocco

This booklet is a record of the speeches and debates from the ‘Inclusive Media for Inclusive Societies’ event, which took place in Rabat, Morocco, over two days in July 2009, when 150 media experts and civil society representatives from Morocco, North Africa & the Middle East and Europe shared their views on respon­sible journalism and the role of media as a forum for national dialogue in the North Afri­can context.