Media's local and global contributions to peacebuilding: that was the topic of a panel discussion organized by Fondation Hirondelle and IRIN News on November 7 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, as part of the 2018 Geneva Peace Week.
Professional and independent media can fulfil different functions essential to the construction of peace. For example, protection (by providing reliable, factual and impartial information about the conflict the media can allow the population to better protect themselves against the risks that threaten them) ; conflict prevention (through inclusive dialogue, the media can be a catalyst for a more peaceful public space) as well as at the global level to raise public awareness of crises around the world, provide quality information to decision makers and to hold powers to account.
How can local and international media fulfil these roles in the most fragile contexts ? How can journalists working both at the local and international levels have a constructive impact on societies facing major crisis ? How can media and peacebuilding organisations better work together at different levels ? Fondation Hirondelle and IRIN News led a discussion on these issues at the Palais des Nations in front of some 60 people attending the "Geneva Peace Week", bringing together experienced journalists from diverse backgrounds:
- Josephine Schmidt, Executive Editor at IRIN.
- Obi Anyadike, Editor at large, IRIN News and OSF Fellow on Nigeria.
- Martin Faye, Fondation Hirondelle’s Representative in Mali. Martin Faye supervises the Studio Tamani daily news program, produced since 2013 by a team of local journalists in Bamako and broadcasted by 70 partner radio stations accross the country.
- Michel Beuret, Fondation Hirondelle’s Head of Editorial Content. Michel Beuret has previously worked has a journalist for more than 20 years. He covered many crises around the world for « Le Temps », « L’hebdo », and the Swiss Public Television RTS.
The moderator was Stéphane Bussard, Journalist - Geneva Correspondent, for the Swiss daily newspaper "Le Temps".
Watch Martin Faye in this video produced by the Geneva Peace Week at the end of this panel: