Charming Editors & Engaging Audiences

Sep 22009

Editors Note: Highway Africa hosts a DIGITAL STORYTELLING IN DEVELOPMENT JOURNALISM Workshop in Ghana.

Development Journalism makes editors yawn and drop these stories to the bottom of the pile, especially on TV. But when we put innovation and creative storytelling back on the development agenda we can charm editors and engage broadcast audiences.
On Tuesday September 8th at 2.30 pm Highway Africa (the largest annual gathering of African journalists) will host a DIGITAL STORYTELLING IN DEVELOPMENT JOURNALISM Workshop.

 

The Objectives  are:

 

•            To create an understanding of the elements of development journalism

•            To share skills on how to tell development stories better

 

Some of the issues to be addressed include how media organisations make use of opportunities provided by digital technology, the water story and innovative approaches for TV.

 

Elijah Chiwota, the Inter Press Service (IPS) Media Project Coordinator, is one of the conveners and Knight Fellow Sylvia Vollenhoven will moderate the hour-long interactive session.

 

The Sessions and Presenters are:

 

°       Development Storytelling: Let’s Stifle Those TV Yawns – Sylvia Vollenhoven & Thomson Foundation CE, Janet Boston... Development Journalism makes editors yawn and drop these stories to the bottom of the pile, especially on TV. But when we put innovation and creative storytelling back on the development agenda we can charm editors and engage broadcast audiences. This session looks at excellent examples from around the world… stories that have claimed their place in the TV mainstream. Robert Lamb’s recent “Nature.Inc” (BBC series), the award winning “Hands On / Earth Report”  & “Children on the Frontline” Projects (Producer Janet Boston) and  “Our Own Voices”, the rare collaboration between UNICEF and the SABC, are some of the featured TV programmes.

 

°       Development Journalism in an Online Era - Terna Gyuse, IPS Regional Editor will address the promotion of development journalism – with background, context and analysis - in an era where attention spans are shrinking and celebrity news dominates. Using award-winning examples of development journalism, Guyse will explore digital story telling that focuses on the untold stories.

 

°       Telling the Digital Water Story: A Case Study – Clever Mafuta, Southern Africa Research and Documentation Centre (SARDC)... A water headline usually does not inspire one to read a story. Yet the consequences of the absence of clean water, for example, can grab headlines. This means that the water story is an important story all the time. The challenge is how to tell this story in an exciting way.  The SARDC experiences help by giving a water angle and a regional flavour to the issue.

 

°       Changing Lives Experience – Paula Fray, Trainer, IPS Regional Director: Africa... Research tomes are often accessible only to researchers and academics but what happens when you want to make research real? Using research as a development journalism experience, IPS tested various platforms to tell the research story and discovered interesting ways of reporting on the continent.