After the election of new Board members in November 2011, BIRN’s new Board and Steering Committee met for the first time in Belgrade from July 6 to July 8.
The new board is composed of Tim Judah, author and Balkan correspondent for the Economist, Wolfgang Petritsch, Austria’s Permanent Representative to the OECD, Steve Crawshaw, international advocacy director at Amnesty International, Stefan Lehne, former Austrian diplomat and visiting scholar at the Carnegie Europe in Brussels, and Per Bymon.
Previously head of Humanitarian Assistance in the Swedish SIDA (Swedish International Development Agency), he is now secretary general of Swedish Radio and Television’s humanitarian foundation, Radiohjälpen.
Ana Petruseva, representative of BIRN members, previously a long-time president of the board, also now joins the board.
The Board was presented with BIRN’s organisational structure, its on-going charitable and commercial programmes, and the organisation’s current success as well as plans for the future.
BIRN’s Statute was put before the members for consideration and, following further input from the team, will be finalised by the end of September.
“It was important for Board members to understand the depth and breadth of what BIRN is, and also to see that each of the local BIRNs can do different things,” Judah, the president of BIRN’s Board, said.
“It was also helpful for people from the local BIRNs to get together and understand what everyone else is doing and share experiences, as well as discuss how to exploit the network’s strength for their mutual benefit,” he added.
BIRN’s staff used the opportunity of the meeting to vote for a new visual identity for the whole organisation, as well as on the new layout of the organisation’s website.
The new visual identity and website will be implemented by the end of the year.
Local BIRN Directors concluded that an internal exchange of personnel should be put into practice, so that BIRN staff members can become better acquainted with their colleagues’ work.
It was also decided that in 2013, the next BIRN annual meeting should be held for the whole organisation.
An investigation by BIRN Editor Lawrence Marzouk and local journalists in Albania and Serbia has received widespread republications and praise in the Albanian press and broadcast media.
BIRN journalists Nektar Zogjani and Tinka Kurti were awarded the first prize for online investigative journalism about poverty by UNDP and the Journalists Association of Kosovo.
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Albania launched a call for investigative stories on October 23rd.
The call is part of the program ‘Exposing Corruption in Albania,’ supported by th Open Society Foundation in Albania (OSFA), the Balkan Trust for Democracy (BTD) and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED).
Power Games, an unprecedented investigation into the murky world of energy deals in the Balkans, has been launched by the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network.
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network Albania organised a roundtable on October 21st in Tirana, bringing together journalists with civil society organisations working in the field of education.
BIRN Bosnia and Herzegovina will hold the US premiere of its latest documentary, ‘Missing You’, on Thursday October 23 at Columbia University in New York.
The German government organization GIZ awarded Gazeta Jeta në Kosovë for investigative journalism about education.
BIRN Serbia held a public debate on the prospects of new models of budgetary financing for the media with NGO and media representatives in Novi Pazar, southwest Serbia.
The key conclusion from the debate in Belgrade on Tuesday was that the recently-published EU Progress Report on Serbia was not too hard on the Serbian government, but it does not mention many problems and some of the conclusions and recommendations are identical to the 2013 Progress Report.
BIRN’s documentary The Majority Starts Here was screened for the first time in the United States on Thursday, at Columbia University in New York.