Albanian Helsinki Committee is implementing the project “Digital Media in a new era: The route to self-regulation, ethics and independence”, financially supported by the Dutch government. In this framework, AHC supported by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Albania and the Regional Rule of Law Network of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs is organizing a Regional Media Conference on 18 – 19 March 2021.

This regional media conference aims to address the challenges and solutions of media representatives, in terms of professionalism, ethics and independence from a regional perspective, in all Western Balkan countries (WB6).

Experts from six Western Balkan countries, respectively from Albania, Serbia, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo as well as from the Netherlands and European Court of Human Rights will contribute to this event.

This event will touch on a number of important media aspects, such as self-regulation, ethics and independence. Organised in different tailor-made sessions, the aim is to help for a better understanding, raising awareness and seeking efficient ways to develop and strengthen media self-regulation, how to minimalize breach of ethics and how to preserve and strengthen media independence and survive from internal or external pressures and influences. Also a special session of this conference will be dedicated to the standards elaborated in the jurisprudence of the Strasbourg Court, related to the freedom of media.

Tirana will be the hosting city of the conference. In compliance with the protocols and guidelines of the World Health Organization, the Conference is planned to be held with a limited physical presence of the participants and through the online platforms, in a hybrid way by altering both formats.

We would like to encourage all those interested to express their interest in participating in the Regional Media Conference by submitting their application as instructed in this call for applications.

Eligible applicants:

–        Representatives/journalists from media outlets in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

–        Editors from media outlets in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

–        Media organizations in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

–        Active journalists (affiliated or freelance) in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

–        Media experts in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

–        Regulatory bodies of media in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

–        Scholars in all Western Balkan countries (WB6)

Please note that the Conference working language will be English, therefore having a good command of English is a must for all participants.

After the event, AHC will provide support through vouchers (a modest sub-grant scheme within this project) based on a model of small amount of cash prize, for 3-4 journalists that are participants of the regional conference. All the interested participants representing the media sector will be encouraged to apply within this scheme with articles or stories that address in more depth the topics/themes addressed at this conference. This scheme will have a preferential focus on addressing these issues at the regional level, but without excluding the competitiveness of attractive ideas at the national level in one of the 6 countries of the Western Balkans. The evaluation of the best proposals will be based on criteria such as professionalism, proposed methodology, proportional representation of gender equality and geographical reach among the WB.

Application procedure:

Interested candidates should send a short Bio (max 1 page) and a letter of interest to the email address: [email protected] . The deadline for applications is 20 February 2021. Selected candidates will be notified after this date.

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