18,323 Out now: «Peace Journalism: A Tool Within Media Development?» by Fabíola Ortiz dos Santos – Issue #2 of «Research Reviews for Development Practitioners

A new issue of our publication series “Research Reviews for Media Development Practitioners” is available! The reviews provide concise analyses of current research, both academic and non-academic, and discuss its practical relevance for international media assistance. 

Out now: Peace journalism as a tool in media development  

The second issue is authored by Fabíola Ortiz dos Santos, MEDAS 21 PhD student at University Duisburg-Essen, who asks “Peace Journalism: A Tool Within Media Development?”. Here are three key findings: 

·      The study of peace journalism emerged in the 60s, drawing on the overlapping fields of conflict analysis and peace research. The seeds of this notion were first introduced in a paper authored by Johan Galtung and Mari Ruge in 1965. Their study was instrumental in the development of the theoretical perspectives called ‘peace/ conflict journalism’ on the one hand, and ‘war/ violence journalism’ on the other.

·      The concept of peace journalism, however, is not without its critics, who blame it for its advocacy role and ‘false morality’. According to the critics, this notion cannot be imposed from the outside, and can only evolve within a culture of peace in each society. Questions posed by scholars and practitioners have raised doubts as to whether the peace journalism approach can be implemented by journalists in their day-to-day reporting and if the circumstances of news production can be adjusted to the different contexts.

·      The label ‘peace journalism’, or ‘conflict-sensitive journalism’, is usually reflective of the practitioners’ perception of what is more context-relevant and likely to be conducive to the engagement of the donors, the audience, and the public at large. Regardless of how it is framed, the underlying precept is that professionals are willingto question their own prejudices, opinions, and biases when striving to accurately present the various perspectives involved in a conflict.

The entire research review including conclusions for practitioners is available online and free of charge at:  


The publication series has been initiated by the German “Forum for Media and Development” fome and the graduate program MEDAS 21 with the aim to inform practitioners and researchers about key debates, evidence and emerging issues
in international media development. It has received funding from VolkswagenStiftung.

Upcoming issues
Up next are:
·      Sustainability: Going Beyond the Buzzword (by Michel Leroy)
·      Comprehending Media Systems for Media Development (by Johanna Mack)

These reviews are currently being edited and will be released in the upcoming weeks. Stay tuned!

And then?
Further research institutions and individuals are invited to join the initiative to expand the series’ scope and reach! If you are interested in contributing as an author or reviewer, please contact ines.drefs@tu-dortmund.de

We hope you’ll enjoy the read! 

Best wishes from the editorial team

Christoph Dietz, Ines Drefs, Sofie Jannusch, Guido Keel 

Dr. Ines Drefs
Program Director MEDAS 21

Erich Brost Institute for International Journalism
Otto-Hahn-Str. 2
44227 Dortmund

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