This effort builds on our earlier work and leverages the existing relationship and public prominence of the RSC, both institutionally and individually.
We are also broadening our network of media contacts and our activities help to provide new opportunities for cross-border cooperation and collaboration between media professionals and media outlets in Armenia and Turkey. More specifically, RSC media support activities include four specific goals: (1) to elevate the level of discourse by providing more serious analytical content, (2) deepen and expand the scale and scope of media coverage, (3) to correct and counter inaccurate or stereotypical media coverage and (4) to facilitate closer cooperation and collaboration between Armenian and Turkish media professionals, with a specific focus on columnists, TV talk show hosts, pundits, “experts,” and other “opinion-makers” and “opinion-shapers” in each country.
This activity also expands coverage by focusing on new and alternative media avenues, such as professional and academic journals, electronic news agencies, social network groups and blogs, aimed at broadening our audience being the traditional print and television media. In terms of outputs, the media support effort is driven by two distinct goals. The first goal is the most obvious, and aims to attain an increase in the number of interviews, published analyses and television media coverage, with an effective mechanism to quantify and measure the outputs. Second, we seek to forge better collaboration and cooperation between Turkish and Armenian media outlets, aimed at capacity-building based on mutual interest and professional development. And third, we also seek to better bridge coverage and cooperation between and among national and local media outlets (Turkish and Armenian), domestic and international media outlets, and alternative, on-line electronic media outlets and professional journals and publications.
Taking into account the polarized nature of the Turkish media, we have been careful to balance our activities on two levels: first, by working with print media, television and alternative, electronic news outlets and, second, by cooperating with both pro-government and opposition media. Further, our planned outcome for media support efforts include a demonstrable and measurable degree of deeper analytical content on a wider range of issues beyond the limited scope of only Armenia-related issues. These issue areas will include wider analytical material for developments in the region, well beyond the context of Armenia or the genocide issue, such as the implications from the Kurdish issue, Syria, the nuclear deal with Iran, as well Azerbaijan, Georgia and Nagorno Karabakh, and also the wider region, such as EU engagement and US-Turkish relations, for example.
On September 13, 2018, Urban Foundation for Sustainable Development (UFSD) hosted a workshop on “Exchange of Best Practices in Plastic Waste Management between Armenia- and Turkey-based CSOs and Practitioners.” The workshop is part of a project that contributes to the development of cooperation between environmentalists, waste management practitioners, businesses and local authorities of Armenia and Turkey through sharing best practices in plastic waste management. The grantee, Urban Foundation for Sustainable Development in partnership with the Union of Diyarbakir Young Businessmen organized a 1-day workshop in Diyarbakir with participation of 20 representatives of local authorities, plastic waste management practitioners, environmental CSOs, businesses in the field of plastic waste separation and recycling from Armenia and Turkey. The workshop was followed by a study visit to Plastic Waste Recycling Plant in Diyarbakir, as well as a follow-up exchange workshop in Yerevan. Based on the results of the study visit and workshops UFSD will produce a booklet on the best practices of plastic waste management in Armenia and Turkey. The project will result in an increased awareness of stakeholders of the plastic waste management practiced on the other side of the border, as well as will provide an opportunity for networking between practitioners and businesses focusing on plastic waste management. Representatives of local authorities may consider replicating the best practices in plastic waste management in their own communities.
This activity took place within the framework of the Sub-grants Scheme implemented by Eurasia Partnership Foundation as part of the “Support to the Armenia-Turkey Normalization Process” programme, funded by the European Union and the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs.