Post COP 21: Strengthening Media Capacity to Monitor and Report on Climate Change in Asia Pacific

Post COP 21: Strengthening Media Capacity to Monitor and Report on Climate Change in Asia Pacific

This project seeks to build on the momentum generated by the Conference of the Parties (COP) 21, along with other activities of UNESCO to enhance media reporting on the globally interconnected issue of climate change by building capacity of media in developing countries, and most particularly in Less Developed Countries (LDCs) and Small Islands Developing States (SIDS), to provide timely and reliable access to information and knowledge on a key development issue such as climate change. More specifically, the project aims to:

  • Equip journalists with the specialized knowledge and skills necessary for authoritative reporting on climate change, taking into account the phenomenon’s social, political and economic complexities.
  • Raise public awareness of the dangers that climate change poses for Pacific islands States, Southeast Asia and African countries, as an integral part of their commitment under the Paris Agreement to implement “their nationally determined contributions, in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, in a coordinated and effective manner, including through, inter alia, mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology transfer and capacity building” (Article 6.8).
  • Promote South-South networking among Pacific islands States, Southeast Asia journalists and schools of journalism and those from Africa, as a way of demonstrating both the global and geo-specific nature of the communication challenges inherent in climate change,
climate change reporting
climate change reporting
climate change reporting
climate change reporting

Key Activities

During the implementation period, the project had conducted the following activities:

  • UNESCO Bangkok in partnership with the Cambodian Institute for Media Studies and Climate Tracker organized a regional workshop for young journalists on reporting climate change and sustainable development issues in Southeast Asia from 20-23 March in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. 14 participants from Southeast Asia (Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam) joined the 4-day workshop comprising various lectures from climate change science to the photojournalism and field trip that enabled participants to see the impacts of climate change in agricultural area in Cambodia.
  • UNESCO Jakarta, the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, and Universiti Sains Malaysia jointly organized several workshops to discuss and explore the issue of reporting on climate change and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as well as to provide input to a new journalism curriculum that can report on climate change and sustainable development in a holistic manner. The proposed curriculum aims to tackle these challenges with the objective of training journalists that could effectively report on climate change and sustainable development issues.
  • In order to better support journalistic reporting of the climate change and sustainable development in Asia Pacific region, UNESCO is producing a new resource material that take into consideration the unique challenges and opportunities in the region. The forthcoming guidebook is tentatively titled “Getting the Message Across: A Guidebook for Journalists on Climate Change and Sustainable Development in Asia Pacific” which based on the 2013 “UNESCO’s Climate Change in Africa: A Guidebook for Journalists”.
  • Organized the Regional conference “Getting the Message Across: Better Journalistic Reporting on Climate Change and Sustainable Development” in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 8 November 2017. The talks were recorded and will be uploaded online as open access educational videos that can be freely used to learn more about reporting on climate change. This was followed by a two-day expert round table meeting to review the draft of the “Getting Message Across: A Guidebook for Journalist Reporting on Climate Change and Sustainable Development in Asia Pacific”.
  • Organized a 6-day training course in Fiji for 15 participants from Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Vanuatu and Vietnam on the psychological implications of disasters relating to climate change.

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