The WCSJ is a great event. But, say many, it always ends too soon. That’s why we are proposing four long-term projects to accompany the conference. The idea is to bridge the gap between successive conferences with in-depth work under the flag of the WFSJ. Some of these projects would be developed before WCSJ 2019 to allow us to show results at the 2019 event. Others would be developed and launched at the conference itself.
An important feature of the long-term projects is that they are collaborative, bringing together journalists from different regions of the world. With the exception of the “Ask an expert” project, which is already fully funded by French language Swiss, French, Belgian and Canadian public broadcasters, the budget of the WCSJ will include a 25% share in each of these projects. The remainder will have to be financed independently with fundraising carried out in collaboration with the overall fundraising effort for the WCSJ. We will take a decision in February 2018, based on the funding secured, as to which of the projects will go ahead. With the help of the WFSJ and the WCSJ, these projects each give motivated journalists the opportunity to foster the entire field of science journalism.
Here are short summaries of the projects we are proposing.
Western Europe – Balkans pairing contest. The idea is to build 10 pairs of two journalists, one from each region, for them to work on a similar theme, visit the other’s region at least once and publish a contribution. The three best contributions will each receive a prize at the WCSJ 2019. [READ MORE]
Video Master classes. The aim is to bring 10 top science journalists from around the world to Lausanne and to film them talking about their daily work in an engaging and dynamic format. The resulting videos, inspired by the project www.masterclass.com, will form a valuable resource for journalists wanting to hone their skills in a range of areas from unearthing information to writing a book. The content will be decided in advance of the WCSJ, but the videos will be shot during the conference. They will be made available as a legacy of the conference. [READ MORE]
Struggle with politics. After the election of Donald Trump as US president, scientists around the world marched for science. Many chose to play a more prominent role in the public sphere and some even decided to embark on a political career. The Struggle with politics project intends to give seven journalists from around the world the possibility to follow one such scientist closely during their politico-social coming-out. At the WCSJ, each will present multimedia stories about their scientists, includ- ing an element of self-reflection as the journalists con- sider their own role in the realm of science democracy. [READ MORE]
“Ask an expert”. A team of science journalists finds an expert and asks them, on camera, to answer questions and share their expertise on a hot topic of the day. This format is already well established at the French-language Swiss broadcaster, RTS, (www.avisdexperts.ch/) in collaboration with the universities of Western Switzerland and it now counts more than 2000 experts. The project aims to extend the format to other French-speaking countries, including France, Belgium and Canada. The aim for those public broadcasters is to collect a lot of contributions from international scientists between January 2018 and June 2019, and to showcase them during the WCSJ 2019 in Lausanne.