Thomson Reuters Foundation

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Thomson Reuters Foundation
Headquarters London, United Kingdom
Key people

Thomson Reuters Foundation is the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, the global news and information provider. The Foundation is a registered charity in the United States and United Kingdom and is headquartered in Canary Wharf, London.

The Foundation stands for free independent journalism, human rights, women’s empowerment and the rule of law. Using the skills, values and expertise of Thomson Reuters, the Foundation runs programmes including free legal assistance, media development and in-depth coverage of the world’s under-reported stories. The Foundation works to expose corruption worldwide and is active in the global fight against human trafficking.[citation needed]

The current CEO of the Thomson Reuters Foundation is Monique Villa, a French national and former Managing Director of Reuters Media and Chairman of Action Images. She was ranked 43rd of the world’s 100 most influential people in business ethics in 2011 by Ethisphere.[1]

The Foundation is primarily funded by Thomson Reuters.

Key programmes[edit]


TrustLaw, an award-winning[citation needed] service created in 2010 to spread the practice of pro bono worldwide by connecting the best law firms and corporate legal teams around the world with NGOs and social enterprises in need of free legal assistance.[2] Since its inception, TrustLaw has generated the equivalent of $70 million in pro bono support. Today, TrustLaw boasts over 3,000 members across 177 countries, including over 550 law firms and 2,450 high-impact social enterprises and NGOs. TrustLaw also publishes an annual Index of Pro Bono - which captures and analyzes global pro bono trends across the legal industry - as well as legal guidance on the protection of human rights and the available recourse for violations thereof.[3]

Journalism and media training[edit]

Since 1983, The Foundation has used the Reuters principles of impartiality to train reporters around the world. The Foundation provides practical, skills-based training programmes available in seven languages and across 170 countries. To date, over 13,000 journalists have been trained internationally on 27 highly specialized training topics.[4]

In addition, the Foundation sets up and manages independent news platforms: in the aftermath of the Arab Spring, the Foundation launched Aswat Masriya,[5] an independent and unbiased political news website which quickly established itself as an authoritative mainstream source of information, becoming an essential tool for Egypt's transition to democracy. In 2013, the Foundation launched Source, a new website providing business and economic news from Zimbabwe. Ahead of the country's first general elections in November 2015, the Foundation also launched Myanmar Now, a new portal dedicated to free and independent journalism in Myanmar led by Burmese journalists. The latter won the European Commission’s Lorenzo Natali Media Prize 2015 for a feature on underage sex workers.[citation needed]

Set up in 2006 and part of the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford, the Foundation funds the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (RISJ), a research centre for international comparative journalism.[6]

Under-reported stories[edit]

Journalism is one of the pillars of the Thomson Reuters Foundation. The Foundation's 30 correspondents across five continents, and a network of over 100 contributors, are dedicated to covering the world's under-reported stories, from human rights abuses to the human impact of climate change, to the social damage poised by endemic corruption.[7] The Reuters distribution network disseminates the Foundation editorial content to over a billion readers every day.[citation needed] In 2015, the Foundation editorial team won the Asian Environmental Journalism Award for Excellence in Environmental Reporting by a Media Organisation,[8] as well as a United Nations Correspondents Association UN Foundation prize.[9]

Perception polls[edit]

Developed and produced with the help of some of the world’s leading gender experts, the Foundation's perception polls aim to generate international debate by putting women's rights at the top of the news agenda.[citation needed] The Foundation's polls include: The World’s Most Dangerous Countries for Women (2011),[10] Best and Worst G20 Countries for Women (2012),[11] Best and Worst Arab League Countries for Women (2013),[12] the Most Dangerous Transport Systems for Women (2014),[13] and the Five Key Issues Facing Women Working in the G20 (2015).[14]

Trust Women[edit]

Trust Women's mission is to put the rule of law behind women’s rights and fight modern slavery through concrete action.[15] The annual event brings together global corporations, lawyers, government representatives, and pioneers in the field of women’s rights and anti-slavery. A fast-growing global movement, the 2015 edition brought together 550 global leaders 60 countries and representing over 200 organizations, reaching 65 million people worldwide through extensive media coverage and highly interactive social media engagement.[citation needed] Past speakers have included Cherie Blair, Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan, and Nobel laureates Kailash Satyarthi and Muhammad Yunus.[16]

As part of the Trust Women Conference's commitment to tangible action, Monique Villa announced the launch of the Stop Slavery Award, a new initiative by the Thomson Reuters Foundation[17] to recognize companies leading the fight against modern slavery in their supply chains. The Award, designed by world-renowned artist Anish Kapoor,[18] will be conferred for the first time in November 2016.

As a direct result of the Trust Women Conference, the Thomson Reuters Foundation worked with the office of the Manhattan District Attorney and top U.S. financial institutions - including Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Barclays, TD Bank, American Express, Western Union – to issue international guidance aimed at helping the wider financial communities to identify and report irregularities in financial transactions linked to human trafficking.[19] With the success of the US initiative, the Thomson Reuters Foundation launched a European financial working group - bringing together the likes of Europol, the UK National Crime Agency and major European financial institutions.[citation needed]

In 2016, the Stop Slavery Award was launched as a direct action of the 2015 Trust Women Conference to demonstrate that businesses can play a critical role in eradicating forced labour and guiding consumer decisions. The award is the very first global accolade of its kind and will be conferred on November 30, 2016, as an artwork designed by world‑renowned artist Sir Anish Kapoor. The awarded companies will receive the right to use the Stop Slavery Award logo for one year. The judging boardis composed of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Kailash Satyarthi, global human rights and business expert John Ruggie, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus H. Vance Jr, Britain’s Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner Kevin Hyland, Edelman President and CEO Richard Edelman, and international criminal prosecutor Patricia Sellers.[citation needed]



The Reuters Foundation was created in September 1982 to support journalists from developing countries through education and training. This charitable trust funded by the Reuters Group provided cash grants to educational and humanitarian programs around the world.[citation needed]

The Foundation also awarded university fellowships to journalists from developing countries to attend universities in the United Kingdom, France and the United States.[citation needed]

In September 1997, the Reuters Foundation launched AlertNet, a website providing free humanitarian news and information. AlertNet was set up in the aftermath of the 1994 Rwanda genocide as a response to criticism of the slow media response and poorly coordinated activities of the relief agencies on the ground. AlertNet aimed to facilitate coordination among relief workers.[20]

In 2004, the Foundation created, Iraq’s first independent national news agency, Aswat al-Iraq (Voices of Iraq), with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Spanish International Cooperation Agency (AECI). The service continues to provide impartial and reliable information in Iraq today.[21][22]

Building on its engagement with journalism training, the Reuters Foundation supported in 2006 the creation of the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, a university research centre for international comparative journalism. The Institute is based in the Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford.[citation needed]

Thomson Reuters Foundation[edit]

Following the acquisition of Reuters by the Canadian group Thomson Corporation on the 17th of April 2008, the Foundation was transformed to embrace the wider scope of the company. Under the leadership of the new CEO, Monique Villa, the Foundation scaled down its grant making activities, revamped existing programs and launched new projects – all aimed at leveraging the skills and expertise of the company.[23][24]

In January 2010, with the Haitian earthquake, the Foundation launched an Emergency Information Service (EIS) aimed at providing practical, life-saving information to survivors in local languages.[25][26]

In 2010 Monique Villa launched TrustLaw, an award-winning service that connects law firms and corporate legal teams around the world with NGOs and social enterprises in need of free legal assistance.[citation needed]

In 2012, the Foundation held the first annual edition of the Trust Women Conference.[citation needed] The yearly conference has quickly become one of the leading forums to discuss human trafficking and slavery, and many other issues revolving around women’s economic and social empowerment.[citation needed]


  • In 2015, The Foundation editorial team won the Asian Environmental Journalism Award for Excellence in Environmental Reporting by a Media Organisation,[8] as well as a United Nations Correspondents Association UN Foundation prize.[9]
  • In 2015, Myanmar Now won the European Commission’s Lorenzo Natali Media Prize for a feature on underage sex workers.[citation needed]
  • In 2012, AlertNet Climate was selected as an Official Honouree of the 16th Annual Webby Awards in the Green category.[27]
  • In 2011, AlertNet was awarded the “Voices of Courage” Award by the Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC).[28]
  • In 2011, AlertNet was awarded an EPPY Award for the "Best News Website" category.[29]
  • In 2011, the Foundation received an EPPY Award for “Best Overall Website Design” for its online platform,[29]
  • AlertNet received a gold trophy for “Best News Site” at the Lovie Awards.[30]
  • In March 2011, the Foundation won the "Best Use of New Media" award for its Emergency Information Service (EIS) at the Third Annual Social Innovation Awards hosted by Justmeans.[31]
  • In 2011, AlertNet received the Popular Communication award for technological innovation and a NetMedia European Online Journalism Award for its coverage of natural disasters.[citation needed]
  • TrustMedia received a "Commended Company" designation by the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria for its innovative journalist training on health reporting.[32]
  • In 2010, the Foundation was awarded the Best Annual Report Award at the Digital Communications Awards.[33]
  • In 2010, “Surviving the Tsunami: Stories of Hope”, a Thomson Reuters Foundation multimedia documentary created for the fifth anniversary of the Indian Ocean tsunami, was nominated for an Emmy award and won a prize at the Best of Photojournalism Awards.[34] The documentary was also a finalist in the 2010 Dart Awards for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma and named Best Web Special Feature by Editor & Publisher.
  • AlertNet was named a Millennium Product by the British government, an award for outstanding application of innovative technology.[35]


  1. ^ Ethisphere Institute. "2011 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  2. ^ "Thomson Reuters launches TrustLaw". Retrieved 12 July 2016. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Thomson Reuters Foundation | Media Development". Retrieved 2015-12-28. 
  5. ^ "TrustMedia Launches Aswat Masriya - Vote/Voices of Egypt | Thomson Reuters Blog". Retrieved 2015-12-28. 
  6. ^ "Reuters Institute for the study of Journalism". Reuters Institute for the study of Journalism. Retrieved 2015-12-28. 
  7. ^ "Thomson Reuters Foundation | News". Retrieved 2015-12-28. 
  8. ^ a b "Asian Environmental Journalism Awards - AEJA Winners 2015". Retrieved 2015-12-28. 
  9. ^ a b "2015 UNCA Awards Winners « The United Nations Correspondents Association". Retrieved 2015-12-28. 
  10. ^ "The world's most dangerous countries for women 2011". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  11. ^ "G20 countries: the worst and best for women". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  12. ^ "POLL: Women's rights in the Arab world". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  13. ^ "Most dangerous transport systems for women". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  14. ^ "The 5 key issues facing women working in the G20". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  15. ^ "Home | Trust Women Conference". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  16. ^ "Speakers | Trust Women Conference". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  17. ^ "Stop Slavery Awards | Trust Women Conference". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  18. ^ Trust Women 2015 - Anish Kapoor logo, retrieved 2015-12-21 
  19. ^ "Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance, Jr., Thomson Reuters Foundation CEO Monique Villa, Top U.S. Financial Institutions Issue White Paper to Combat Human Trafficking using Financial Data". Retrieved 2015-12-21. 
  20. ^ Women Refugee Commission. "’An interview with our 2011 Voices of Courage Honouree Thomson Reuters Foundation". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  21. ^ Farzad, Roben (July 18, 2005). "Iraq to Get News Service Of Its Own". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  22. ^ UNDP. "Reaching the Outside World. Media Development". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  23. ^ Thomson Reuters. "Thomson completes acquisition of Reuters; Thomson Reuters shares begins today". Press Room. Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  24. ^ PR Newswire, United Business Media. "Thomson Reuters Announces New Leadership Team for Foundation". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  25. ^ Thomson Reuters. "Thomson Reuters Foundation pioneers new emergency information service for survivors of natural disasters". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  26. ^ Bulkley, Kate (18 June 2010). "Mobile technology takes centre stage in disaster relief". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  27. ^ The Webby Awards. "16th Annual Webby Awards Official Honoree selections". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  28. ^ Women Refugee Commission. "An interview with our 2011 Voices of Courage Honoree Thomson Reuters Foundation". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  29. ^ a b EPPY Awards. "EPPY Awards - 2011 Winners". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  30. ^ The Lovie Awards. "1st Annual Lovie Honourees". Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  31. ^ Justmeans. "Winners Of Justmeans 2011 Social Innovation Awards Announced In London, March 25". Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  32. ^ Business Action on Health Awards, GBCHealth. "Commended Company 2012: Thomson Reuters Foundation". Global Business Coalition on Health. Retrieved 16 July 2012. 
  33. ^ Digital Communications Awards 2011. "Winner" (PDF). Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  34. ^ National Press Photographers Association. "Best of Photojournalism 2011". Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  35. ^ "Millennium Products Archive" (PDF). Design Council. Retrieved 16 July 2012. 

External links[edit]