Integrating DRR Reporting in Journalism Education

Integrating DRR Reporting  in Journalism Education

The Asian Institute of Journalism and Communication, together with the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR), UNESCO Jakarta Office, and Philippine Association of Communication Educators (PACE), conducted the Workshop on Integrating Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Reporting in the Journalism Education Curriculum in ASEAN Countries, December 9-10, 2014, at Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria, Quezon City, Philippines.

The countries represented at the two-day workshop were Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar, the Philippines, Cambodia, and Thailand. Over 50 were in attendance, including department heads, teachers, and students of communication and journalism units of colleges and universities; print and broadcast media professionals from the Peace and Conflict Journalism Network (PECOJON), Eagle Broadcasting Corporation, and 9TV/CNN Philippines; and members of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) and the Center for Disaster Preparedness (CDP).

Keynote speaker Philippine Senator Loren Legarda, who is UN Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation for Asia-Pacific, emphasized the urgent need to integrate DRR reporting in journalism education. The media’s engagement of the public in mitigating climate crisis and strengthening environment conservation efforts, said Legarda, should be constant.

“DRR is not a seasonal issue. It is always timely and relevant,” she said. “We must promote change in our mindset from one that is reactive to one that is proactive. Not only do we need our journalists to understand, but we also need them to encourage people to be part of this cultural transformation.”

The workshop participants discussed possible contents of curricula on DRR Journalism as well as Risk and Humanitarian Communication, and how these can be incorporated into journalism education and other related fields of study in ASEAN schools.

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