Support to Media in Jordan

The Support to Media in Jordan (STMJO) project aims to help Jordan’s efforts in advancing the Jordanian media to further increase its freedom, independence and professionalism. The four year project (2014 – 2018) is generously funded by the European Union and implemented by the UNESCO Amman office in close collaboration with the Ministry of State for Media Affairs and the media community in Jordan.

How?

The project is based on a holistic, two-phase approach. Activities of phase one (August 2014 – July 2015) include a thorough analysis of the Jordanian media landscape on the basis of the UNESCO Media Development Indicators (MDI) framework and a review of the implementation of the media strategy action plan. The review of the action plan took place through a comprehensive and consultative stakeholder process with the media sector and relevant government representatives, taking into account the preliminary findings of the MDI analysis. In the second phase, together with partners and with financial support from the European Union, the Project is responding to the findings of the MDI Study, and seeks to strengthen freedom of expression, access to information, free, independent and pluralistic media, ensuring that journalists and media are key drivers for democratic, sustainable and peaceful development in Jordan.

The focus of the project is on:



© UNESCO/Wencke Müller

Developing a comprehensive analysis of the media landscape in Jordan using UNESCO’s Media Development Indicators (MDIs)

For this project component during Phase I, UNESCO worked with International Media Support (IMS) to produce a detailed and highly regarded analysis of the media landscape in Jordan. The subsequent workplan and activities were formed on the basis of the recommendations from the MDI report.



© UNESCO/Wencke Müller

Supporting the capacity of local and community radios

Through the project, UNESCO has been working on three separate component to support the capacity of local and community radios. In total 10 radio stations are being provided with technical assistance and capacity development training. Over 160 radio staff and volunteers have benefitted from extensive support throughout Jordan. UNESCO is also providing radio equipment for selected community radio stations.



© UNESCO/Lidija Sabados

Strengthening journalism education and training institutions

This component of the project is divided into two areas. In the first, the project aims to improve the course offerings in the entry level journalism curriculum at two universities to meet international standards and the emerging needs of the media industry. New courses in the area of digital media, ethics, and investigative journalism have been introduced in the two universities. Over 1400 students are expected to benefit from the new improved curricula, and faculty members are being trained on course methodology and content. Secondly, the aim is to provide practicing media professionals with increased access to systematic quality training in areas of cross media information, cyber protection, verification of information, and more.



© UNESCO Amman Office

Enriching media and information literacy at the basic and university levels

This project component aims to increase the understanding of media and information literacy (MIL) and application of MIL competencies in Jordan. During the project, the first policy paper on media and information literacy in Jordan was produced. The project facilitated a dialogue with the Ministry of Education on the introduction in eight public school of the pilot Media and Information Literacy Clubs. For this purpose, the UNESCO Model Curriculum for MIL was adapted to the Jordanian context. In addition, the project produced a curriculum analysis of Jordanian universities to investigate the reality of media and information literacy in university education plans. And for the first time in Jordan, a celebration of Global MIL week was organized at the National Library in Amman.



© UNESCO/Lidija Sabados

Supporting an enabling legal environment

As part of the project’s goal to support an enabling legal environment for the media, the project provided technical advice for the revision of the broadcast licencing system to ensure equitable allocation of broadcast licences to public service, commercial and community broadcasters. In addition, three pieces of legislation were reviewed and recommendations made for improvement according to international standards. The legislation included alignment of the Audio-Visual Law (AVL), Press and Publication Law (PPL), and Access to Information Law (ATI) with international standards as well as the broadcast licensing system. In addition, the project engaged in a dialogue with the Government, national stakeholders, the Media Commission (regulatory body) on freedom of expression and how to move forward with legal reform.



© UNESCO/Lidija Sabados

Facilitating training on the ATI for public servants

This project component aims to empower public bodies to implement the Access to Information Law properly and in full. A customized training plan and training manual were developed and extensive training was delivered to all 60 information officers that operate in every government ministry and public body in Jordan. The capacity of local trainers was also strengthened to be able to carry on further training. In addition, discussions around a network for information officers were supported.



© UNESCO/Hanadi Gharaibeh

Supporting self regulation

The goal of this component is to increase the understanding by the media community of the concepts of media self-regulation and co-regulation. To address the MDI recommendation on the establishment of a self-regulatory or co-regulatory system, a study tour was organized for Jordanian officials, media and civil society, including several media leaders, editors, and government officials, on media self regulation and co regulation to three countries: Denmark, Sweden, UK with the goal of building capacity of media professionals in Jordan.

Where:

The project is being implemented in Jordan.

When:

    1 August 2014       20 November  2018    


 

 

Authoring original research, analysis and reporting on media sector training needs, legal reviews and the broadcasting system.



 

 

Organising and facilitating trainings and capacity development sessions for local and community radios, media professionals, university faculty, and public servants.



 

 

Providing technical and policy expertise in areas of legislative reform, self regulation, media and information literacy, and journalism curricula.



 

 

Providing radio and studio equipment to four local community radio stations and two universities.



 

European Union

The primary objective of the European Union’s development policy is the eradication of poverty in the context of sustainable development. EU partnerships with developing countries to promote respect for human rights, peace, democracy, good governance, gender equality, the rule of law and justice.


Canal France International (CFI)

Canal France International (CFI) is the cooperation agency of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development tasked with coordinating and implementing France’s aid policy for the development of media in the South. UNESCO is partnering with CFI on the entry-level journalism education and systematic quality training for media professionals component of the STMJO project. Specifically, CFI is providing action-oriented technical assistance in the (1) revision of journalism education curricula to meet international standards and the needs of the Jordanian media industry, and in the (2) development and provision of increased access to systematic quality training meeting the needs of media professionals, building on previous attempts, reviews and best international and regional practices in line with the Government of Jordan efforts. CFI, in planned partnership with École supérieure de journalisme de Lille (ESJ), is providing a well-structured and scientific approach for curriculum revisions to two universities in Jordan, Yarmouk University in Irbid and Middle East University in Amman. The proposal relies on the UNESCO model curriculum, which ESJ adapted for francophone countries.

Centre for Law and Democracy (CLD)

Centre for Law and Democracy (CLD) is an organization based in Halifax, Canada that works to promote, protect and develop human rights which serve as the foundation for or underpin democracy, including the rights to freedom of expression, to vote and participate in governance, to access information and to freedom of assembly and association. As part of the STMJO project component on assisting the Government of Jordan in improving the Jordanian legal framework to better balance freedom with obligations, closer in line with international standards, CLD undertook thorough reviews of three pieces of legislation. In addition, CLD facilitated extensive training for government officials on the ATI Law and its implementation.

Community Media Network (CMN)

Community Media Network (CMN) is an independent NGO seeking to serve the Jordanian community through an enlightening discourse. CMN is working on the local radio component of the STMJO project. They are developing the Jordan News Network, a project aimed at producing and broadcasting local news and local sports weekly program on five radio stations in Jordan. The objectives of this project component entail – strengthened local radios, enhanced news content quality and diversity and networking.

Fojo Media Institute

Fojo Media Institute is Sweden’s leading media development centre for professional journalists. The institute started in 1972 and is now part of the Linnaeus University with a special commission to support free and independent media, nationally and internationally. UNESCO is partnering with Fojo for the project component on self-regulation. Fojo is coordinating a capacity building study tour to three countries with the longest history and good models in self-regulation and co-regulation aiming at further raising the awareness of Jordanian stakeholders about the importance of self-regulatory mechanisms.

Jordan Media Institute (JMI)

Jordan Media Institute (JMI) is Jordan’s leading higher education institution providing a one year practical MA in Journalism and journalism training programmes, in Arabic. UNESCO is partnering with JMI on two project components, local radios and Media and Information Literacy (MIL). For local radios, JMI is coordinating a comprehensive training and capacity building program with enhanced program output of a number of the local radio stations. For the MIL component, JMI is providing action-oriented technical assistance in 1) inclusion of MIL into the curriculum of two teachers training colleges, and 2) introduction of MIL as part of the existing Jordanian curriculum for grades 7-9 in a pilot phase.

International Media Support (IMS)

International Media Support (IMS) is a non-profit organisation working with media in countries affected by armed conflict, human insecurity and political transition. UNESCO is partnering with IMS in assessing the Jordanian media landscape on the basis of the UNESCO Media Development Indicators (MDI) in Phase one of the project.