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Media for Development: Context, Purpose and Desired outcomes


1. Summary and conclusion:


Vision: “We believe it is necessary to use our power to leverage our networks to explore engagement with public and private broadcasters, governments, educators and corporations to deliver sustainable development messages.”


Points of Action:

1) To share best practice around desired outcomes in engagement of public and private broadcasters.

2) To monitor content in Community media on issues of sustainable development

3) To undertake a baseline study on the role and relationship between media and sustainable development.

4) Present findings and set up stakeholder meeting at the AMARC 8 Conference in November 2002.

5) To submit an immediate funding proposal to employ a project co-ordinator to oversee the baseline study.


Outcomes: Formation of the: Media for Sustainable Development Forum

The long term desired outcomes include:

Change in Content and Curriculum development

Development of training toolkit for SD

Increased use of the media to disseminate SD information

Private sector support

Increased awareness of communication as a human right

Inclusion of community media in any new broadcasting legislation.

Expanding membership of the Forum.


Partners: AMARC, FEMNET, PANOS Institute of Southern Africa, APC, Open Society of Southern Africa, Africa, South African Broadcasting Corporation, MISA, The Vatican Project and Stakeholder Forum.


2. Full write-up of the action plan

Initial Context: The idea of a ‘Media for Development’ action plan was coined during PrepCom 3 in New York. During a meeting between a small group of community media professionals it was observed that there was as yet no real or coherent representation of the media as a stakeholder group and its role in tackling issues of sustainable development.

This began a process of inviting and dialoguing with a number of representatives from across the sector in order further identify agencies and individuals that would be interested in participating in a multi-stakeholder dialogue around the issue of the media and sustainable development.

Purpose: The purpose of the IC was to produce measurable, clear and owned plans of collaborative action. The specific focus for the group was identified and defined during the three days of negotiation, a process that was facilitated and designed by an independent facilitator and the IC team.

Desired outcomes: While various ideas and points of potential action had been identified prior to the IC the group worked and dialogued and to deliver a collectively owned and desired action plan.


The result from a culmination of three days of intense negotiation was that the Media for Sustainable Development Forum was born.


Day 1  - Processes and Outputs

After the opening plenary sessions the group spent the first part of the afternoon getting to know each other and sharing information on themselves and their organisations. This process was facilitated by an independent facilitator Alex Villar-Hauser and was assisted by Ruth Grier from Stakeholder Forum who was responsible for bringing the group together. After documenting their expectations and purpose for being at the IC (transcript available on request). The group worked for the second part of the afternoon to identify the following areas for potential action.


Initial input regarding potential workshop areas, Day 1

Leveraging our networks to explore engagement with public and private broadcasters, governments and corporations to deliver sustainable development messages

Advocacy to drive governments to support community media initiatives

Engaging with Implementation Conference Action Groups to disseminate messages through the media

These three areas were supported by a general statement with regard to the sustainable development agenda:


 “We believe it is necessary to use the power to leverage our networks to explore engagement with public and private broadcasters, governments, educators and corporations to deliver sustainable development messages.”


Day 2 – Process and outputs

The group began the day by evaluating the three possible outcome areas and deciding which one they would be able to commit to and develop. The purpose from the previous day was modified and the following wording agreed,

To involve our identified Stakeholders to increase their active commitment in sustainable development media content.”


This purpose was then strengthened by a negotiated group commitment:

 “For ourselves we need the commitment to learn and share with each other, know about each other and our organisations and take ownership for the process we have initiated.”


The following areas were then addressed and documented:


Our Vision

A society that is:

Empowered through access to all information relevant to sustainable development.

Able to assert its rightful place and meet its obligations by participating in decision-making processes at all appropriate levels of consultation. That addresses its needs AND enhances the lives of all its citizens.

Affecting a change in patterns of behaviour so as to achieve sustainable development


Our Mission

To create partnerships to maximise the work being done by individual stakeholders

To promote sustainable development content that is:

* Relevant         * Accurate         *Diverse            *Up to-date

By using our tools and knowledge management process

To lobby the advertising industry to take sustainable development in to account and take a responsible approach to advertising content

To deploy our existing/new resources - commitment – guidance AND in ongoing consultative dialogue with its key stakeholders ensuring that sustainable development content reaches and impacts those that will benefit positively from it

To raise awareness amongst civil society communities policy makers of the right to information and participation


Our Values

A people driven approach to development

Democracy that values participation and inclusion of all voices

Enhancement of life


Truth – objective & honest

To work against free- market driven development


How do we engage our organisations?




Process notes

Friday Aug 30th 

Report back according to organisation and practice

Identify options for action

Look at possible linkages to ongoing projects

Identify possible funds.

End of Aug/ start Sept

Use other internal communication systems


Source relevant information from the organisation and feed into the project hub/centre.


Feedback to the group on success

End of September



Getting Voice and Stakeholder contact at AMARC 8 – end of Nov 02



By when


Elect a Co-ordinator 

26th Aug

Ruth or other

Place Action plan AMARC 8 Agenda 

2nd Sept


How to get into AMARC 8 Agenda through Africa Platform 

15th Sept


Need for a pre and post AMAC 8 Plan 

17th Oct


Analysis of the plan by key SH 

31st Oct


Introduction of plan at AMARC 8 

24-31st Nov



Follow up 

Dec -Jan 2003



Baseline work – leading to Nov 2002 - AMARC 8 Conference.




Who is doing what in CM? What are the main concerns and focus?

Identify best practices with a sustainable development focus


All Stakeholders (SH)

Co-ordinator to collate

Content (and quality) of SD messages in CM. With either regional or national focus – suggested regions are Southern Africa and Central America.




Who uses the CM to disseminate SD information or conduct campaigns? How?  - use the IC Database? – Use IC database.


Stakeholder Forum


How do they see or understand CM and SD?  - descriptions, understanding etc – use IC database – Use IC database

Stakeholder Forum


Questionnaire design and distribution

APC, List-server, Co-ordinator

To write and submit funding proposal

Pronatura, AMARC: All to comment

Which training institutions (Media, NGO’s, Universities etc) have incorporated development communications into their programmes? (regional/national focus)  – seek out APC and research already done. – Distribute questions in a questionnaire?





Radio 4 Development


What do the media watchers watch – role of SD? Global focus

PANOS Institute

Mapping the materials and disseminating


Invitation to governments and other SH to AMARC 8


Stakeholder Forum

Organisation of a Multi-stakeholder Dialogue at the AMARC 8 Conference.


Stakeholder Forum


To do this we need:



Researcher(s): One project leader; Volunteers?

Resources: Office space, Computer; create a list server

A System: Network, Internet, knowledge management.

Questionnaire design and dissemination: use IC database

Commitment and regular contact between the group.


The List of Stakeholders to contact:

All 9 LA21 groups


Different government departments

Community groups

Private Sector


Community media groups

Training institutions

Private Sector

Mainstream Media

International organisations

Funding Partners

Funding Partners


NGOs and Networks


Desired outcomes:

Change in Content

Curriculum development

Development of training toolkit for SD

Increased use of the media to disseminate SD information

Private sector support

Increased awareness of communication as a human right

Inclusion of community media in any new broadcasting legislation.

Expanding membership of the Forum.


Key texts to explore the role of Media for sustainable development:

MIMO; The Charter for African Broadcasters; The Highway Africa Charter; APC Charter on Internet Rights; Windhoek Declaration


Identified areas of action:

Share best practice re. desired outcomes in engagement of public and private broadcasters

Monitor content on Community and sustainable development

Training and Duplication of communication to increase capacity at all levels re: content

Impact assessment

Media Audit

Write a clear short statement re relationship between media and sustainable development.

Present findings and engage more people at the AMARC 8 conference.

Set up stakeholder meeting with those who do not usually attend via Stakeholder Forum.

Map fully the full list of stakeholders.


Day 3 – Process and outcomes

The third day was spent solidifying and finalising key areas of action and divisions of responsibilities. The roles of the various groups were discussed and the role of Agenda 21 in inspiring stakeholders to become partners in delivering sustainable development agendas.


Ideas and commitments:

Channel Africa

Become a platform for content distribution for sustainable development.


How to integrate media in specific projects and issues.


My time to this action group. Access to our information, resources and expertise. Space to work in our public space.


Research, commitment and the support of Panos.


A driving force, leadership and research and resources.


Support and commitment


Skills, research and support


Funding information, support and ideas.


Action beyond November:

Re-engage partnerships in driving content on issues of sustainable development

Advocacy for community media in Africa

Offer a service to other groups at the Implementation Conference to engage with the media

Leverage this group to start engaging other stakeholders including governments and corporations in sustainable development issue and the media.


The Role of Stakeholder Forum:

This has yet to formally evolve. Areas of engagement include facilitation in dialogues, harnessing of media contacts and content and general supportive role in fundraising and profile raising. This relationship will undoubtedly evolve and strengthen as the group gains momentum.


The four driving organisations are:  PRONATURA, AMARC, PANOS and FEMNET


Stakeholder Forum Homepage