International Center for Journalists

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International Center for Journalists (ICFJ)
Founded 1984 (1984)

International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) is a non-profit, professional organization located in Washington, D.C., USA, that promotes quality journalism worldwide in the belief that independent, vigorous media are crucial in improving the human condition. Since 1984, the International Center for Journalists has worked directly with more than 70,000 journalists from 180 countries over 27 years. Aiming to raise the standards of journalism, ICFJ offers hands-on training, workshops, seminars, fellowships and international exchanges to reporters and media managers around the globe.

As part of its mission, ICFJ aims to achieve four specific goals. First, ICFJ hopes to make an impact around the globe through giving journalists the tools and training necessary for establishing and sustaining independent media outlets and systems worldwide. Next, the organization wants to help global journalists stay on the technological and professional forefront by providing digital media training in all media—print, radio, TV, and online. In addition, ICFJ hopes to create and train a class of specialty journalists (i.e., health, business, or environmental reporters) that can provide fully informed and in-depth insight into some of the most pressing global issues. Finally, ICFJ strives to move quickly to give journalists the tools they need to cover the big stories of the day.

ICFJ leads programs around the world,it trains citizen and professional journalists in many countries, such as China, Mexico, Pakistan to Ghana and in Arab world in Egypt, Tunisia, and in Jordan at Jordan Media Institute.[1]


ICFJ was founded in 1984 by Tom Winship, Jim Ewing, and George Krimsky, three prominent U.S. journalists. An organization of journalists for journalists, the men intended to use ICFJ to support their fellow journalists abroad, especially those in countries with poor or non-existent free press systems. They believed that the proper role of the news media is to expose, investigate, and articulate issues of concern to average citizens and wished to propagate these ideals across the globe.

Although the founders are no longer involved directly with ICFJ, their families continue to support the organization still today. Winship's son, Tom, currently serves on the Corporate Board, and his daughter Margaret Winship is on ICFJ's Board of Directors. Ruth Ewing, wife of Jim Ewing is a steadfast supporter of ICFJ in many ways, including the development of ICFJ's robust environmental journalism department.

In 2006, ICFJ established the ICFJ Founders Award for Excellence in Journalism as a tribute to Winship, Ewing and Krimsky. This award is presented to a journalist with a long-time commitment to the highest standards of the profession. Past recipients include CBS News' Bob Schieffer (2006), NBC News' Tom Brokaw (2007), The New York Times' John F. Burns (2008) and investigative journalist Seymour Hersh (2009).

Flagship Programs[edit]

Knight International Journalism Fellowships[edit]

The Knight International Journalism Fellowships program pairs global media professionals with partner media organizations in key countries where there are opportunities for meaningful and measurable change. The program, launched in 1994 with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, now also receives support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Media Development Loan Fund.

Knight International is establishing new journalism associations, launching journalism schools, creating web-based databases to track corruption, establishing news delivery services via cell phone and creating web-based platforms for increased distribution. Such examples show journalists – and citizens – that quality reporting can make an impact, and they embolden journalists to increase their efforts.

International Journalists’ Network (IJNet)[edit]

The International Journalists’ Network (IJNet) is an online service that provides information on a wide range of training opportunities to a global network of journalists and media development organizations. The site offers the latest social networking tools, discussion spaces and forums. IJNet also sends weekly e-mail bulletins in Arabic, English, Chinese,Persian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish to more than 17,000 media professionals.

IJNet keeps track of media training and other assistance efforts in more than 150 countries, enabling donors and journalism training organizations to maximize resources and avoid duplication. Support for IJNet comes from the Eurasia Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the National Endowment for Democracy, the Open Society Institute and friends of ICFJ.


  1. ^ ICFJ at Jordan Media Institute

External Links[edit]

Further reading[edit]