BIRN Regional Board Meeting Held in Skopje

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Directors, board members, partners and donors of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, met in the Macedonian capital Skopje on June 18-20 for the network’s latest regional Board meeting.

Attendees convened for the three-day meeting, held every 18 months, to highlight BIRN’s recent achievements, review its internal policy and discuss its future role in the region.

BIRN’s Steering Board also met to review internal policy, current training plans, anticorruption policy, obstacles faced by individual country, and a potential change in financial software.

A number of new policies were agreed upon and voted into effect by the BIRN Assembly.

During the meeting, BIRN directors also led special presentations on key topics currently affecting the political and media landscape in the Western Balkans, which included press freedom and the rule of law.

BIRN Regional Network Director Gordana Igric said that in the current regional political landscape “organisations such as BIRN working on promoting responsible journalism are more important than ever.”

The regional Board meeting was attended by Board members Stefan Lehne, visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe, Per Byman, Secretary-General of Radiohjälpen, Wolfgang Petritsch, Chair, Board of the European Cultural Foundation, Steve Crawshaw, Secretary General of Amnesty International, and Ana Petruseva, BIRN Maceodnia director.

Some of BIRN’s long-term donors, such as representatives from ERSTE Foundation, as well as ambassadors and representatives from Swedish, Norwegian and UK embassies, also attended the meeting.

Alongside Igric, BIRN’s regional country directors, including Mirna Buljugic from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Jeta Xharra from Kosovo, Kristina Voko from Albania, Dragana Zarkovic Obradovic from Serbia and Marian Chiriac from Romania, attended the event as well.

On Monday, 20 June, Igric, Lehne, and Petritsch, hosted a public panel on the ‘EU Prospects for the Region’, moderated by BIRN Macedonia Director Ana Petruseva.