Ten fellows from the region met in Skopje for the final seminar of the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.
Following the opening dinner on Wednesday night, on Thursday the agenda included a panel on social networking and the media with Filip Stojanovski, program coordinator at the Metamorphosis Foundation for internet and society.
Stojanovski gave the fellows valuable insight as well as practical tips into how journalists can use social networks to promote their work, but also how they can gather information and double check on facts. The fellows exchanged views and examples of journalists' use of social networks throughout the region.
The second panel on the state of media in Macedonia included Goran Mihajlovski, editor-in-chief of Vest daily, Tamara Causidis, president of the Journalists' union and Petrit Saracini of the Macedonian Media Institute. The panelists discussed the deteriorating state of the media and of journalistic standards in the country, and other challenges that journalists face.
The panelists and the fellows discussed issues of media freedom, the media's struggle to survive in the market and alternative ways for the media to survive and resist pressures coming from political or business interests.
On Thursday the fellows had a guided tour in the centre of Skopje and visited all the new building and monuments erected as part of the Skopje 2014 project, a government project to revamp the city.
The Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence, funded by the Robert Bosch Stiftung and the ERSTE Foundation, in cooperation with the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, has been running since 2007. Each year, ten Balkan journalists are competitively chosen to receive funding and professional support to conduct their own research projects.
Selected journalists receive a fellowship of 2,000 euro, a travel allowance of up to 2,000 euro and a chance to participate in a seven-month programme for professional advancement. In addition, the independent Selection Committee awards bursaries of €4,000, €3,000 and €1,000 to the authors of the three winning articles.
This years award ceremony will take place on November 23 in Skopje.
The Silent Scream, a documentary about survivors of wartime sexual violence, produced by Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BIRN BiH), was screened at The New School for Public Engagement, in New York.
Past participants in the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence from all over the Balkans came to Belgrade from November 28-29 for the annual BFJE Award Academy and to take part in parallel alumni sessions that enabled them to exchange experiences, discuss new ideas and present their latest projects.
Journalists from across the Balkans gathered in Belgrade from December 5 to 6 to discuss the contemporary Balkan art scene and have their stories commissioned for BIRN’s ‘Invisible Art’ project, supported by the Prince Claus Fund.
BIRN journalists Parim Olluri and Petrit Collaku were awarded the first prize for an online story by the United Nations Development Programme and the Journalists Association of Kosovo.
BIRN BiH’s new documentary "The Silent Scream" was screened to a group of students studying human rights in the western Balkans at the Harriman Institute at the Columbia University in New York.
‘Invisible Art’, a new project from the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, will be launched with a regional meeting of participating journalists in Belgrade.
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BIRN BiH) in co-operation with the Centre for Post-Conflict Research, the OSCE Mission to BiH, and the British Embassy presented the International Protocol on Documentation and Investigation of Sexual Violence in Conflict, and 'The Silent Scream' documentary to stakeholders in Brcko District and Zenica last week.
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network Bosnia and Herzegovina (BIRN BiH) held the last of its annual countrywide round of meetings with representatives of the media and judiciary in Banja Luka, Brcko and Sarajevo last week.
The top prize in the 2014 Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence has been awarded to Jeta Abazi, journalist from Kosovo at a closing ceremony held in Belgrade, on Friday.
The premiere of “The Silent Scream” documentary produced by BIRN BiH, provoked debate at the screening in Banja Luka on Monday, November 24 2014.