Media professionals in Morocco work within the constraints of press freedoms nominally protected by the constitution, and state censorship. DW Akademie focuses on training media workers and media viability.
Moroccan society is in the midst of change. The country is characterized by stark contrasts including an urban-rural divide and conservative and liberal forces. News and information are readily available throughout the country.
While Morocco officially enjoys freedom of expression and of the press, there are many examples of state interference in the media. The vaguely defined media laws make it easy for the state to threaten journalists with fines and imprisonment. Journalists know it is dangerous to report on topics such as the royal family, Islam, terrorism or anything critical of official Western Sahara policy.
However, in recent years journalists have repeatedly tried to push the boundaries of freedom of expression and create open forums but have also faced recurring lawsuits, at times with questionable accusations.
Online media are struggling to survive. Companies, as well as the state, use advertising contracts as leverages for securing the media's loyalty and compliance. In addition, alternative business models for promoting quality, independent journalism are lacking.
DW Akademie began working regularly in Morocco in 2012 and since early 2018 has worked with various online media. The focus here is on training editors and camera operators in video production, and on advising managers on financial issues.
From 2014 to 2017 DW Akademie supported the state Institut Supérieur de L’Information et de la Communication (ISIC) in modernizing its curriculum. Between 2014 and 2016 DW Akademie worked on several projects funded by the German Federal Foreign Office. Partners included the private Moroccan regional radio stations Medina FM, Radio Plus and Cap Radio, with a goal to strengthen regional political reporting.
Funding sources: German Federal Foreign Office (AA)
Contact: Vera Möller-Holtkamp
Locations: Casablanca, Rabat
Main focus: Professionalism in journalism, media viability