In the Republic of Moldova, DW Akademie works with educational institutions to strengthen quality journalism and increase the media literacy of children and youth.
Although Moldova’s government is pursuing a pro-European strategy, the country's multi-ethnic population remains deeply divided. Russia’s disinformation campaigns are aimed particularly at the country’s Russian-speaking minorities, further polarizing the political discourse against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine
Moldovan media are owned primarily by oligarchs, and the few independent media outlets lack qualified journalists able to produce relevant, trustworthy information. Public trust in Moldova’s traditional media has slipped and people are instead turning to social media platforms. Misinformation and tensions have increased dramatically since the war in Ukraine, and the public has difficulties recognizing online manipulation. This is especially the case for children and youth, a particularly vulnerable group.
To strengthen quality journalism and young people’s media and information literacy (MIL), DW Akademie works with partners in Moldova to establish educational institutions as innovative centers for quality journalism, and to promote an integrative MIL approach.
In crises like the war in Ukraine or the pandemic, media workers face serious challenges – not just physical and psychological ones but also financial challenges as media organizations struggle to remain economically viable. At the same time, outlets need to develop strategies to counter news fatigue, a lack of public trust and competition from social media and disinformation campaigns.
In response, DW Akademie supports the Moldova School of Journalism (MSJ), a partner organization, in its aims to become an innovation center for quality journalism. MSJ will be able to develop and implement needs-based multimedia training for journalists, and bring together education, creative impulses and the media industry to develop spaces for media innovation in local newsrooms.
Children and youth are the most active group when it comes to the digital sphere but they are also the most vulnerable. Although quickly drawn to social media, they know little about the risks and are thus susceptible to threats such as hate speech, cyberbullying and propaganda. DW Akademie works with the media non-governmental organization Independent Journalism Center (IJC), the Ministry of Education and selected schools throughout the country to establish MIL as part of compulsory school subjects.This way MIL will reach as many children and young people as possible, including those from national minority groups. Through additional training, teaching material and the development of new modules, teachers learn to convey MIL skills to their students using an integrative teaching approach.
Funding: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Program Director: Olena Ponomarenko
Locations: Chișinău and regions throughout Moldova
Main focus: Qualification, media self-regulation and journalism ethics, media and information literacy, journalism education/curriculum development