Assessment of media development in Nepal launched
UNESCO’s pioneering base-line study “Assessment of Media Development in Nepal” was launched yesterday in Kathmandu, amid a programme attended by media policy makers, academicians, journalists and government officials. The study undertaken between 2011 and 2013 provides comprehensive material to analyze the country’s media landscape.
Speaking at the launching ceremony of the book, Axel Plathe, UNESCO representative to Nepal said, “The assessment of Nepal’s media landscape is intended to accompany the country in its democratic transition and to foster free, independent and pluralist media”. Applying the diagnostic instrument of UNESCO’s Media Development Indicators, the study contributes to present discussions on constitutional and legal reforms and media self-regulation mechanisms, he added.
Prof. Parsuram Kharel, who led the research team of the assessment said, “This type of assessment was necessary and I believe the assessment would help motivate Nepal’s media fraternity to become more inclusive.” Borna Bahadur Karki, president of Press Council Nepal praised UNESCO’s efforts for the publication. He said the assessment would help media industry to become more professional. Vice-president of Federation of Nepali Journalists Yasoda Timsina thanked UNESCO for covering gender issues related to media.
The launching ceremony that was attended by a total of 80 persons was facilitated by Laxman Datt Pant of the UNESCO Office in Kathmandu.
The study assesses Nepal’s print, broadcast and online media under five categories. They cover the areas of media regulation, plurality and diversity of media, the potential of media to provide a platform for democratic discourse, professional capacity building and infrastructural capacity.
Each of these five categories is broken down into a number of components, which in turn contain a series of broad indicators. The study provides 99 recommendations for further development of the media in Nepal. Its preparation was coordinated by a team of national experts. The team has not worked alone. It has used the insights, analysis and suggestions by many experts from government, media trade unions, professional associations, civil society and academia.
The team has applied the diagnostic instrument of the Media Development Indicators which UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Council for the International Programme for the Development of Communication approved in 2008.
The Media Development Indicators allow a detailed analysis of all aspects of the media landscape, and can guide the efforts of different actors working for media development, as well as the formulation of policies in this field.
So far applied in more than ten countries, the Media Development Indicators are a tool to analyze the legal, regulatory and economic frameworks, in which a country’s media operate, their democratic potential, training and skills development, and the information and communication infrastructure.
The study “Assessment of Media Development in Nepal" based on UNESCO’s Media Development Indicators (Kathmandu: UNESCO, 2013. – ISBN 978-9937-8446-5-9) is in Open Access available at unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002254/225486E.pdf or as paper copies from the UNESCO Office in Kathmandu.
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