The presumed murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi makes 2018 the deadliest year for journalists in decades, according to Reporters without Borders, raising important questions about press freedom and role of media in an increasingly complex and fraught global landscape.
2018 also marks a century since the emergence of modern war reporting. From the first mass coordinated state propaganda campaigns, to the first visual documentation through photography and film from the front lines, World War One marked a turning point in the relationship between media and conflict. From which stories are covered and at what risk; to ethical standards and responsibilities; the importance of a compelling narrative and role of propaganda to manipulate it; the impact of changing technology; and how information is received… the big questions remain the same yet remain crucial debates to have.
Accurate information and compelling narratives are central tenants in raising awareness of human rights violations, conflict transformation and peace-building. But in a world where trust in media and institutions is at an all time low, while the dangers and complexities of covering conflict increases, how do we protect and balance the role of the media, freedom of speech and security while remaining critical and holding bad actors accountable? At WSF, in partnership with the University of Kent’s Beyond Brussels, we want to spark debate and look ahead to the next century of media and conflict.
Thank you Daniel Patrick Medina for designing the event’s original artwork!!
List of Speakers:
Jesse Rosenfeld: Freelance journalist based in the Middle East, who has reported on the sectarian war in Iraq, the Israel/Palestine conflict, the Arab Spring and more for The Daily Beast, The Nation and Al Jazeera English. His work in the region is the subject of the documentary Freelancer on the Front Lines.
Alice Musabende: Gates Scholar in Politics & International Studies at Cambridge University. Former Canadian journalist and survivor of the 1994 Rwanda genocide against the Tutsis. She was one of the first women to graduate from the Rwandan School of Journalism.
Dr. Bojan Savic: Lecturer at the University of Kent’s Brussels School of International Studies and an expert in the construction of narratives in conflict and development, including undertaking extensive fieldwork. Prior to joining the Brussels School of International Studies, Bojan did research and taught at Virginia Tech’s Washington D.C. campus and Elon University in North Carolina.
Renate Schröder: Director of the EFJ after more than 20 years working for the prestigious European organization. EFJ defends the right to freedom of expression while also advocating for the social and professional rights of European Journalists.