Note: this resource guide is under development. Pages, including those already published for the FPU Office, are work in progress. For comments or feedback, please contact email@example.com.
For independent news media organisations, journalists and journalism at large to function properly and survive economically, a number of conditions need to be met. These conditions can be grouped into three dimensions of the enabling environment for media and journalists. For many years these dimensions, in the analysis of Freedom House, consisted of the nationally-focused political, economic and legal enabling environment. But, increasingly, online communication platforms and technologies and innovations across borders as well as the online behaviour of audiences are impacting on the enabling environment for the media and the motivation and ability of states to regulate online.
This resource guide consists of three main sections. The first describes the three main pillars of the enabling environment for news media and journalists, with an emphasis on media viability and small and medium-sized media outlets. It will explore key concepts and issues of media law and regulation; main issues in the political environment that create or diminish space for media freedom and freedom of speech; and economic threats to and opportunities for media viability. A main theme throughout this section is how the enabling environment for the media has been dominated by tech giants, their influence on the platform economy and internet governance, and the struggle that existing regulatory and intellectual frameworks have to keep pace with this development.
The second section will look at the main multilateral and intergovernmental organisations as well as multi-stakeholder networks and platforms that serve as normative spaces and places for the enabling environment of the media. The third section will give an overview of advocacy strategies, toolkits and resources.
The resource guide does not attempt to include all possible considerations and developments within these sections. Instead, tries to strike a balance between general descriptions of the different phenomena and the responses of Free Press Unlimited and our partner network in our media development and advocacy work. It will make linkages to our combined track record and relevant evidence and literature that is being collected and expanded on a rolling basis in the evidence base.
Picture by ATMTX. Curves and Pillars, Russell Senate Office Building – Washington DC
Picture: Magna Carta
Picture by Ramyar Jabar
Picture by Romy van den Boogaart
Evidence base: Enabling environment for the media
|Media Turn to Engagement and Creativity to Confront COVID Crisis||2020||Global||Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF)||report|
|Supporting Local Journalism in the Age of Covid-19||2020||United States of America||Radcliffe, D.||policy recommendations, report|
|Crisis and Opportunity: How Independent Media Can Learn from the Pandemic||2020||Global||Open Society Foundations||report|
|Safety of Journalists and the Fighting of Corruption in the EU||2020||Denmark, Europe, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden||McGonagle, T. et al.||policy recommendations, research report|
|Local Radio Stations in Africa Prove Resilient Amid COVID-19||2020||Uganda, Zimbabwe||Myers, M. et al.||case study/ies|
|The Fight Against Impunity||2019||Global||Free Press Unlimited||evaluation|
|The Right of Access to Information: Exploring Gender Inequities||2016||Global||Institute of Development Studies (IDS)||academic article|
|More Important, But Less Robust? Five Things Everybody Needs to Know about the Future of Journalism||2018||Global||Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism||report|
|Building Regional Strategies for Media Development in the Middle East and North Africa||2020||MENA||Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA)||report|
|The Safety of Women Journalists: Breaking the Cycle of Silence and Violence||2019||Afghanistan, Colombia, Indonesia, Iraq, Kenya, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia||International Media Support (IMS)||report|
|Why Bolivia’s oldest journalist association went digital to defend press freedom||2018||Bolivia||European Journalism Centre (EJC)||interview|
|World Development Report 2017: Governance and the Law. Spotlight 12: The media||2017||Global||World Bank Group|