Balkan School of Science journalism 2019

Balkan School of Science journalism 2019

(Lead: Mico Tatalovic and Balkan Network of Science Journalists, and Fabio Turone, president of SWIM)

We propose a one-day event to train a new generation of science journalists in South-East Europe.

The 2019 edition of the Balkan School of Science Journalism will bring together 50 journalists for a one-day professional development workshop to present practical, hands-on training sessions to sharpen reporting skills on the most pressing science, health and environmental issues in South- East Europe.

The school, which was previously held in Belgrade, Serbia (2013) and Podgorica, Montenegro (2014), is designed to build capacity and skills, as well as to promote excellence in science, health and environmental coverage in Eastern Europe and the Balkans.

Journalists and journalism students from the entire region, from Slovenia, Hungary and Moldova in the north, down to Turkey and Cyprus in the south, are welcome to participate, as are those from Eastern Europe.

Journalists attending the workshop will engage in interac- tive sessions with prominent science reporters and editors from the region – and beyond – to discuss subjects such as data and investigative journalism, as well as tackling corruption in science policy and academic misconduct. Real- life examples of best practice and stories that worked well will be used by speakers to illustrate the best of science reporting in the region – and how to achieve it.

Journalists will also discuss techniques for connecting with the scientific community as well as effective ways of obtaining information from institutions and organisations.

A special focus of the workshop will be to strengthen the cross-border collaboration framework and the regional network of science journalists.

The school is a continuation of existing efforts for interna- tional and systemic support for quality science journalism in the region, which are planned to continue in 2020 at the EuroScience Open Forum conference in Trieste, Italy.

The school will also be linked to a special WCSJ 2019 project of Balkan Science Journalism Fellowships, with some of the participants and speakers expected to be fellowship winners who will discuss collaboration with their Western European colleagues.

Lausanne, Switzerland, is a perfect location for the school, as it is geographically close to and easy to reach from the Balkans. Switzerland has also been a long-time supporter of international development efforts in the Balkan region. The school is planned to take place on 29 or 30 June, just before the WCSJ 2019 kicks off.