The Thomson Foundation is a media development not-for-profit organisation based in London, United Kingdom but operating worldwide. It was founded in 1962 and was the first charitable foundation with the specific aim of training journalists in developing countries.It celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2012.
London is the capital and largest city of England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea separates Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.
The goal of the foundation is to promote transparency and media freedom across the world and train journalists in the skills that will help them to perform their role of holding governments and commercial entities to account in the public interest.
It provides practical training for journalists and communications professionals across the globe working with every type of media. Its online academy Journalism Now is a series of interactive courses designed and led by industry experts providing e-learning in digital and multimedia skills.
The foundation was established in 1962 by the Canadian media businessman Roy Thomson. It was set up to champion free, fair and open media in the developing world. Previous guises include the Thomson Media Foundation.
Roy Herbert Thomson, 1st Baron Thomson of Fleet, GBE was a Canadian newspaper proprietor who became one of the moguls of Fleet Street.
An extract from the Trust Deed on the formation of the foundation reads as follows: "Its purpose is the advancement of knowledge and spiritual enlightenment of all peoples enabling them to achieve closer understanding and to play an informed and responsible role in the affairs of their nation and the world. To this end the Foundation’s activities are primarily concerned with the development of modern techniques of mass communications in emergent countries."
For many years, the organisation was based in Cardiff, Wales, and worked closely with Cardiff University's journalism school. In late 2012 it moved to central Londonand is now based on Chancery Lane.
The Cardiff School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies (JOMEC) is Cardiff University's school for training in media. It is one of the journalism schools whose main universities are part of the Russell Group universities. It was founded as the Cardiff Journalism School in 1970 by Sir Tom Hopkinson and is the longest established postgraduate centre of journalism education in Europe. The school is considered to be one of the best training centres for journalists, and is described as the "Oxbridge of journalism".
In the past, the foundation has worked in more than 150 countries. Its current projects include the OPEN Media Hub , a four-year programme which seeks to strengthen independent media and professional journalism in 17 of the countries bordering the European Union and create a media sharing platform. Programmes include the Inquirer Awards, which promotes investigative journalism in a number of countries across Asia and the Middle East.
The foundation's previous projects have included a long-running programme of work in Sudan, which included training for journalists working in a range of mediaand Africa Means Business, a project in collaboration with University of Ghana and the African Research Consortium based in Kenya, with funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
The Thomson Foundation runs an annual digital and multimedia summer course, which sees journalists from across the globe come to the UK for a five weeks of training and work placements.
The foundation has also done a lot of work in China over the past three decades, including encouraging modern journalistic practices in the state news agency Xinhua.
The foundation runs a number of competitions mainly aimed at young journalists to enable them to showcase their work and/or to provide opportunities to take part in study tours and receive mentoring from senior international journalists. The Young Journalist Award has been running annual since 2013 in partnership with the UK Foreign Press Association.. The Mobile Journalism competition was launched in conjunction with Mojocon a conference sponsored by Irish Broadcaster RTE in 2015. It is now associated with MojoFest .
The Commonwealth Digital Challenge is a competition aimed at providing young and aspiring media managers from the Commonwealth with the skills and tools necessary to help their organisations face the digital challenges in their countries. It is funded by the Elizabeth R Media Fundand managed by the Thomson Foundation. It was originally established as The Elizabeth R Broadcasting Fund in 1995 to assist the development of broadcasting skills in the Commonwealth with a donation from Buckingham Palace. The donation came from royalties from “Elizabeth R”, the 1992 BBC documentary which marked the 40th anniversary of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.
Journalism Nowis the foundation's on line training programme. It is designed to develop journalists' abilities to work across multiple platforms and media.
The Foundation's first Director of Studies was Don Rowlands, former editor of the Western Mail in Cardiff. In 1964, he was joined by Tony Crook, then on the Daily Mail, as his deputy. The pair visited numerous countries, training their journalists in their own offices, which was seen as the best way forward after overseas journalists had been to Cardiff for their three-month courses.
Don was exceptionally well-known and respected throughout India and the Middle East, while Tony also worked in India, Lebanon, Afghanistan and Iran. Tony Crook was asked to join The Times when Lord Thomson took it over in 1967. Don died shortly after retiring in 1989.
The organisation's present chief executive is Nigel Baker,.
Other staff and associates include: director of development David Quin, director of innovation and learning Hosam El Nagar, head of training and communications Deborah Kelly, Bettina Peters, formerly of the European Journalism Centre, Helen Scott, a member of the board of directors for the Sheffield Documentary Film Festival and Mark Webster,previously a correspondent and editor at ITN.
Lord Chandos is the chair of the Thomson Foundation,having succeeded Lord Fowler, a former cabinet member in the Thatcher government.
RNW Media is an international non-governmental organisation based in Hilversum, The Netherlands. RNW Media focuses on engaging young people and supporting them to create positive change in their societies. Using digital media platforms--websites, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram--RNW Media builds digital communities of young people in restrictive settings. Thematic areas are: Social Cohesion and Inclusive Governance (SCIG); Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR); and Media Capacity Building.
PA Media is a multimedia news agency operating in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
The National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) was founded in 1951 as organisation to oversee the training of journalists for the newspaper industry in the United Kingdom and is now playing a role in the wider media. It is a self-appointed body and does not hold any statutory powers from central government, meaning students and those seeking to enter the media industry do not have to legally hold one of its qualifications to obtain work as a journalist.
The National Press Foundation (NPF) is an American journalism organization focused on educational programs for journalists and issuing awards for accomplishment. All programs are free for accepted fellows with expenses covered; all awards carry cash awards. The National Press Foundation is affiliated with the Council of National Journalism Organizations.
The Commonwealth Press Union (CPU), formerly the Empire Press Union, was an association composed of 750 members in 49 countries, including newspaper groups, individual newspapers, and news agencies throughout the Commonwealth of Nations. They were represented within the CPU by their proprietors, publishers or senior executives.
The Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF) was established in 1967 as a non-profit organisation by the news agency Pakistan Press International and operated until 1974, when it had to suspend operations due to the political environment then prevailing in the country. It was reactivated in 1992 and has since been involved in assisting in the development of independent media in Pakistan by conducting training programmes for journalists, carrying out projects in research and documentation, and campaigning to defend and promote freedom of the press.
The Global Press Institute, formerly the Press Institute for Women in the Developing World, is a San Francisco-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit with international operations in 27 countries. GPI was founded on the premise that, with appropriate training, local women in developing countries can become quality journalists. It identifies the social, historical and political context that these women possess as a factor distinguishing them from traditional foreign correspondents.
The International Women's Media Foundation (IWMF), located in Washington, D.C., is an organization working internationally to elevate the status of women in the media. The IWMF has created programs to help women in the media develop practical solutions to the obstacles they face in their careers and lives. The IWMF's work includes a wide range of programs including international reporting fellowships in Africa and Latin America and providing grant opportunities for women journalists, research into the status of women in the media, and the Courage in Journalism, Anja Niedringhaus Courage in Photojournalism, and Lifetime Achievement Awards. The IWMF advocates for press freedom internationally and often forms petitions asking international governments to release journalists in captivity and offer protection to journalists in danger.
Self Help Africa is an international charity that promotes and implements long-term rural development projects in Africa. Self Help Africa merged with Gorta in July 2014.
The Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (RISJ) is a UK-based research centre and think tank.
Demotix was a photo agency. It enabled freelance photojournalists to license their photos to mainstream media organisations, charities, and stock image buyers.
Komla Afeke Dumor was a Ghanaian journalist who worked for BBC World News and was the main presenter of its programme Focus on Africa.
Internews Europe is an international development organisation founded in 1995 that specialises in media development which includes supporting independent media and free information flows in fragile states, emerging democracies and some of the world’s poorest countries. In doing so, it tries to promote good governance, human rights, effective response to humanitarian crises and access to information on critical issues such as the environment and climate change.
Thomson Reuters Foundation is the London-based charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, a Canadian global information and news network. The Foundation is a registered charity in the United States and United Kingdom and is headquartered in Canary Wharf, London.
The Ghana Institute of Journalism is a Public university in Ghana. The institute has accreditation from the National Accreditation Board.
Africa Check is a non-profit fact checking organisation set up in 2012 to promote accuracy in public debate and the media in Africa. The organisation's goal is to raise the quality of information available to society across the continent. Africa Check is an independent organisation with offices in Johannesburg, Nairobi, Lagos, Dakar and London, producing reports in English and French testing claims made by public figures, institutions and the media against the best available evidence.
The Student Publication Association (SPA) is a national body for student newspapers and magazines in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. The SPA aims to provide support and training for student journalists, encourage best practice, and recognise success.
The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) is a non-profit organisation that promotes, protects and defends the right to a free media and freedom of expression throughout Europe. It was founded in 2015 as a watchdog of the European Charter on Freedom of the Press. The main activities of the ECPMF are monitoring press and media freedom violations, advocacy and practical help for journalists, such as legal support and a "journalists-in-residence" programme.
Paul Monde Shalala, is an international renown and award-winning Zambian journalist, blogger, and political analyst specializing on Zambian, African and world current affairs. He is a reporter for the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation.
James Ball is a British journalist and author. He has worked for The Guardian, WikiLeaks, BuzzFeed, The New European and The Washington Post and is the author of three books. He is the recipient of several awards for journalism and was a member of The Guardian team which won the Pulitzer Prize for investigative journalism.
the Africa Mean Business Group, a pan-African media initiative, in collaboration with University of Ghana and sponsored by the Thomson Foundation, UK, and the African Research Consortium based in Kenya