by Patty Eddu, WACC
In May 2011, the Global Media Monitoring Project (GMMP) network members participated in a survey to determine the network’s priority goals and strategies for the next four years.
All regions were represented in this survey with the highest participation coming from Africa (26%) and Europe (26%).
Fourty per cent of the participants of the survey have been involved with the GMMP for less than two years, 26% between four to ten years and almost one out of five (19%) have been a part of the GMMP network for more than 10 years.
1. The results reveal two priority goals for the network: namely (i) creating media awareness from a gender perspective, and (ii) influencing change in in-house media policies and behavior towards a more balanced representation of gender in the news media.
While the GMMP’s objectives have remained unchanged since its inception, the network’s emphasis on work towards media house policy change as well as critical citizen media literacy from a gender perspective reflects a crystallization of priorities. Gender-aware media house policies are a structural measure intended to institutionalize gender-ethical journalistic practice, while critical media literacy is imperative for transforming societal worldviews at the same time as it holds media accountable for its output.
2. The network’s views of GMMP priorities for the World Association for Christian Communication (WACC) that has co-ordinated the project since the year 2000: (i) supporting the creation of ‘gender and media’ curricula and modules in schools, journalism training institutes and centers , and (ii) working with the GMMP network to train media professionals on gender issues and gender balanced reporting.
3. The network’s views on how to make the GMMP follow-up work successful: (i) strengthen the GMMP network and build solidarity. Various means are suggested. (ii) Increase emphasis on the qualitative components of the research, and (iii) provide more knowledge about the GMMP and the need for change.
4. The network’s views on strategies to make the GMMP research more effective and successful in future: (i) increase the length of the monitoring to a period greater than one day, (ii) put in place resources for the network, including a databank where participants can contribute success stories, and a tool to monitor results of actions taken to improve media portrayal of women, (iii) build the capacity of GMMP coordinators, secure the participation of more countries, more academic researchers, training institutions and monitors.
The survey reveals a network that remains deeply committed to the overall project to achieve gender-fair, gender-balanced news media.