Centre for Policy Alternatives on 15 June, 2009

Best practices and potential for improved information flows in media and civil society

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This report, commissioned by HIVOS in November 2008, looks at the conditions favourable to and severely vitiating the potential of information flows in support of peace, human rights and democratic governance within and between civil society and mainstream media in Sri Lanka.

The report ends with three key annexes that critically analyse the media landscape in Sri Lanka, the legal and regulatory framework and enumerate concerns regarding the publications of human rights issues in mainstream media based on a large survey carried out by CPA in 2007.

The recommendations, analysis and broad overview of the media in Sri Lanka today must inform more sustained, larger and longer-term programmes to support media development in Sri Lanka that is independent of (yet responsive to) the vicissitudes of war making and peace building. Pegged only to peace when peace is dominant, initiatives to support media freedom and media development have largely failed to make an impact when war and violence are dominant. Addressing this deep-rooted systemic violence requires media and NGOs able to understand, adopt and adapt a spectrum of media and communications channels and techniques. It is to this end that this report looks at the state of play today and looks forward to stronger bonds between journalists and civil rights activists, and the NGOs they head or work with, in the future.

Best practices and potential for improved information flows in media and civil society