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Journalism can offer so much more than coverage of the status quo: It can also point out solutions. Therefore DW Akademie and its partners have initiated the Constructive Journalism Lab. Let’s move media forward!
The media plays a key role during the COVID-19 pandemic. News reports provide facts, figures and up-to-date information, demand accountability and point to grievances. These are vital elements of reporting, but often follow the motto where it bleeds it leads.
This has a downside: Some viewers argue that these types of reports make them feel depressed and thus try to avoid traditional media. News avoidance is a trend that has been growing in recent years and has become particularly noticeable during the pandemic. Scientists talk about coronavirus stress syndrome to describe the anxiety and panic caused by constant media coverage of the illness.
DW Akademie strongly believes that media has the potential to do much more than report on the negative – even in times of a pandemic. Another role of media can be to conduct constructive journalism. This means to point out solutions, portray inspiring changemakers and report on ways to come out of the crisis. It is a future-oriented, nuanced form of journalism that offers a new mindset and broadens the horizon of its audience. This is a role to which not many media outlets are living up to, although a lot of users and viewers are looking precisely for this kind of orientation.
This is why DW Akademie has started the Constructive Journalism Lab: Moving Media Forward. It is financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) as part of the initiative "Transparency and Media Freedom – Crisis Resilience in the Global Pandemic".
The Constructive Journalism Lab focuses on Africa and the MENA region and comprises various elements:
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