A handbook by Ross Howard
In countries affected by conflict and severe human insecurity media has an important role to play as an active promoter of human rights and democratisation, as well as a facilitator of conflict reduction and resolution through the gathering and dissemination of non-partisan information.
Journalism sensitive to conflict empowers reporters to report conflicts professionally without feeding the flames – to report in depth, to cover all sides and to ventilate all issues related to the conflict hence providing the public with more comprehensive, neutral and accurate information on the conflicts.
In response to an appeal from our Zimbabwean partner organisations, Media Institute of Southern Africa in Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe Union of Journalists, underlining the imminent need for promoting the concept of conflict sensitive journalism among Zimbabwean journalists, IMS cooperated with MISA and ZUJ in organizing a series of workshops in April and May 2009 gathering a broad cross section of media practitioners from across the country.
This handbook in conflict sensitive journalism – special edition Zimbabwe – gathers the experience from these workshops and responds at the same time to the needs of contextualized training manuals and handbooks expressed during the workshops.
The handbook is designed to be a practical everyday guide, which seeks to contribute to the theoretical refinement and practical realization of conflict sensitive journalism as a tool for usage by Zimbabwean media practitioners covering the conflict.