Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Singapore declarations - and the risks

One of the highlights for me at the AMIC conference in Singapore last month - where I gave a paper offering a critique of international media aid in the Pacific and was reelected as the NZ country rep - was a visit to Nanyang Technological University (pictured), which has one of the best communication studies and journalism programmes in Asia (Wee Kim Wee).
A United Nations "Model Curricula for Journalism Education for Developing Countries and Emerging Democracies" booklet was launched at AMIC and various syndicates of the parallel World Journalism Education Congress (WJEC) had their own crack at producing "models" . Guy Berger at Rhodes University in SA posted a good rundown on discussion on his Conversant blog. But on the JEAnet, John Herbert noted a warning:

"I hope this WJEC thing doesn't over take the domestic JEA agenda and meetings etc...one thing that Singapore told me was that the universality of journalism and journalism education is a bit of a pipe dream, and extremely dangerous, and could easily lead to the imposition by the strongest on the rest, colluding with globalism and journalistic imperialism at the expense of localised journalism and journalism education fit for local purpose rather than adhering to some kind of universal ( inevitably Western) approach....we need to keep focused on the internal Australia problems, which are very important ones to solve at the moment, particularly the RQF matter which needs the biggest guns in the university journalism schools to be involved, the professors and senior highly thought of journalism educators need to be at the spearhead of this discussion...."

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