Bolivia's media landscape is extremely polarized and tends to be divided into two political camps: media that support the government and media that are critical of it. Independent, fair and balanced reporting which would, for example, help the public reach informed opinions during elections, is rare. The actual quality of reporting is also extremely low. The media also rarely offer the public an opportunity to actively participate in discussions or express their opinions, which would allow them to become more involved in shaping social and political developments.
Social participation and advanced training lie at the core of the DW Akademie's work in Bolivia. Thanks to a two-pronged approach – the first of its kind in Latin America – young journalists are receiving solid vocational preparation. To boost access to information – especially in rural areas – a further education center focusing on indigenous radio stations will be strengthened, and extended practical training for journalists with community media established. DW Akademie is also supporting communications studies departments across the country with the design of their curricula to help make them more practically oriented. In order to improve the participation of people particularly in poorer urban areas, DW Akademie is supporting local media organizations by helping them create balanced and participatory programs for local people. The requirements of these populations with regard to information and participation are the subject of public discussion among representatives of the media, civil society and politics, and solutions are constantly being sought.
Funding sources: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ)
Country coordinator: Elena Ern
Operational Locations: La Paz, Cochabamba, El Alto, Santa Cruz
Local Partners: Asociación Boliviana de Carreras de Comunicación Social (ABOCCS), Centro de Producción Radiofónica (CEPRA), Fundación para el Periodismo (FPP), Fundación UNIR, Ministerio de Comunicación del Estado Plurinacional de Bolivia