UNESCO plays a critical role in promoting media development globally. The organization’s Communication and Information Sector regularly sends out statements condemning attacks against journalists and updates on the state of media freedom in various countries. Yesterday, I received an e-mail announcing that UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) had chosen to support 84 media development projects around the world.
But the numbers worry me a little. The total package amounts to 2.1 million USD spread out over 84 projects. That’s around 25,000 USD per project. Allocations range from 7,000 (strengthening journalism training capacity in Cameroon) to 80,000 USD (much needed assistance to a Haitian journalists’ association). This list of projects tackles a limited set of issues compared to those addressed by the broad media indicators framework IPDC itself released in 2008.