Supporting the Fourth Estate: What’s Been Done to Bolster Independent Media?


The world has reached a tipping point in the state of vibrant news media. Press freedom has fallen to its lowest point in over a decade, while the media system as a whole battles declines in revenue, audience trust, and the independence it relies upon. In this context, how much has been done to support free, impartial, and pluralistic news media? Is it enough?

An upcoming report from the Center for International Media Assistance and AidData takes a deep dive into the state of media development funding today, analyzing how much the world’s donors spend to help the media build free and open societies. What are the roles of governments, multi-lateral, and private agencies in the field? This discussion follows an unprecedented effort to sift through over 6,000 projects in media development, drawn from the latest figures available in the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development’s database on international aid flows and, for the first time, data on international funding to the media sector coming from China and the Gulf States.

Please join report author Mary Myers on Tuesday, June 19, to discuss both the broad view of the field and how donor priorities impact media workers on the ground. Lunch will be served 12:00-12:15pm, followed by a panel discussion moderated by CIMA Senior Director Mark Nelson.


Samantha Custer, Director of Policy Analysis, AidData

Brian Joseph, Vice President of Programs, National Endowment for Democracy

Mary Myers, Media Development Expert and Report Author

Moderator: Mark Nelson, Senior Director, Center for International Media Assistance

Tuesday, June 19, 12:00-1:30pm EDT

Lunch served 12:00-12:15pm

National Endowment for Democracy

1025 F Street NW, Suite 800

Washington, DC 20004


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