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  1. 1. Final Conference Project Assessment28 January 2011<br />Howard Hudson, <br />Editor,<br />European Journalism Centre<br />
  2. 2. LABS recruitment<br />Across 3 rounds, RELATE expanded from 3 to 12 institutes: a 4-fold increase in 18 months. <br />Clear ability to attract other laboratories <br />Confirmed as a “a potentially self-sustainable initiative”. <br />
  3. 3. Quality of new institutes<br />Very high. Two examples: <br />i) European Southern Observatory (Germany): “world's most productive astronomical observatory; foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe ”<br />ii) INRA (France) “number one agricultural institute in Europe and number two in the world”<br />
  4. 4. Participants<br />Over 78 participants from 23 countries, writing in 17 languages<br />From West Europe: 45 (58%) <br />From East / Southeast Europe: 33 (42%).<br />Over 50% were female<br />100% of participants were placed at labs in foreign countries<br />Just 2 dropped out (due to visa problems).<br />
  5. 5. Quality of work? Publishable?<br />Over 1/4 of participants published their work in specialist or mainstream media, including: <br />The Economist (Tiffany Stecker) <br />Cosmos (MicoTatalovic) <br />Robotics (Jana Witt) <br />Major news websites in Romania (AndradaFiscutean) and Lithuania (ViktorijaRinkeviciute).<br />
  6. 6. Quality of work? Publishable?<br />Some published conference reviews on websites of national associations of science writers, e.g. in Spain (InmaLuque Galan) and Great Britain (MicoTatalovic). <br />Others used the ‘New Science Journalism’ project, a global online community which helps young science reporters to launch their careers.<br />
  7. 7. Approaches and platforms <br />Most participants wrote articles, mainly for publishing online<br />But about 10% produced video and audio reports<br />Demonstrates the adaptability and technical skill of project participants <br />
  8. 8. Skills and opportunities<br />As the 2 winners show, young reporters are capable of publishing not only one but also two or even three articles <br />Despite the general crisis in the economy and industry over the last few years.<br />Entrepreneurialism, persistence, and networking are now key to journalism training, given the fluidity of the market<br />
  9. 9. Training assessment<br />EJC’s open assessment provides a detailed qualitative analysis <br />Participants’ remarks focus i) on the study tours and ii) the wider relationship between science and journalism. <br />First-hand insights, available on a public websiteare useful for future projects<br />
  10. 10. Training assessment<br />Majority of participants gave very positive appraisals of the study tours <br />Many acknowledged the clear gap between scientists and journalists in terms of language, approach and interpretation.<br />
  11. 11. Training assessment<br />Many commented on the benefits of ‘dual track’ networking, with both researchers and other reporters from across Europe.<br />Positive remarks also given on the logistics and guidance <br />HOWEVER…<br />
  12. 12. Training assessment<br />At least 2 participants (Frederiksen and Tatalovic) noted a structural problem: the need for greater journalistic support on-site<br />They wanted a more balanced approach <br />A one-hour briefing by either EJC or Minerva could never balance with 5 days under the host labs’ rules <br />
  13. 13. Final assessment<br />Although EJC made 10 trips and briefings – they were not enough for some participants <br />Although training materials were sent 2 weeks before leaving (journalism ethics, research and pitching guides) – they were not enough for some participants<br />Although core labs had media professionals -- there was a perceived lack of balance between scientific and journalism aspects <br />
  14. 14. Final assessment<br />Current project performance: adequate<br />Most participants understood the need to be entrepreneurial<br />But the balance ‘gap’ became wider as the project grew from 3 to 12 locations<br />To improve: need more journalistic support on-site<br />Specific recommendations? >>><br />
  15. 15. Recommendations<br />Allocate sufficient human and financial resources to enable professional journalists / trainers to guide participants throughout the study tours. <br />Formally integrate the European Journalism Training Association, to work alongside the European Journalism Centre<br />
  16. 16. Future of science journalism?<br />See EJC Magazine: www.ejc.net<br />Science PR: Putting journalists out of the picture (5 July 2010) <br />MYScience meets RELATE: Future-proofing science journalism? (31 May 2010)<br />RELATE visual summary: with links to published articles and press review<br />
  17. 17. Thank you for listening!<br />Howard Hudson<br />Editor, European Journalism Centre (2009-10)<br />Editor and Communications Coordinator, United Nations University-MERIT (2011-)<br />howardrhudson@gmail.com<br />

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