BIRN Balkan Investigative Reporting Network
Ansprechpartner: Petar Subotin, Gordana Igric (Director)
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, is a close-knit group of editors and trainers that enables journalists in the region to produce in-depth analytical and investigative journalism on complex political, economic and social themes.
BIRN emerged from the Balkan programme of the London-based Institute for War & Peace Reporting, IWPR, in 2005.
Its work in publishing, media training and promoting public debate has become synonymous with quality, reliability and impartiality. A fully-independent and local network, it is now developing as an efficient and self-sustainable regional institution to enhance the capacity for journalism that pushes for public debate on European-oriented political and economic reform.
BIRN consists of individual member-organisations, registered in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Macedonia, Romania and Serbia. Together, these organisations pool their resources, connecting their growing teams of specialist journalists – local reporters and analysts – who are trained and supported to produce top-quality, timely and relevant coverage.
In addition, the independent, non-governmental BIRN member-organisations engage in relevant local media development projects. In Bosnia, this means training on war crimes reporting; in Serbia, on minority journalism; and in Kosovo, producing televised debates on current affairs. In Macedonia, Bulgaria and Romania the emphasis is on reporting on the process of European Union integration and membership challenges.
• Training: Training workshops and Training sessions on investigative journalism
• Debates and Round Tables: BIRN moderates regular follow-up debates and discussions. The entire BIRN team gives regular briefings, comments and analyses on the situation in the region to local and international media.
• Multi-Media Projects: BIRN produced an 85-minute documentary, Does Anyone Have a Plan?, which focused on the dilemmas facing 17 ordinary people from Kosovo, Serbia and neighbouring countries in the run-up to final status negotiations.
• Balkan Insight is an online publication of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (BIRN) bringing news, investigations and analysis of politics, business and society in the Balkans.
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Network is establishing a broader educational programme that includes cooperation with international universities and several local partners, with the aim to put in commercial use a curriculum for investigative reporting produced by BIRN (Digging Deeper: A guide for investigative journalists in the Balkans), while improving investigative journalistic skills that are desperately needed in the Balkans.
The programme includes one annual event, the Summer school of Investigative Reporting where next one is to be held in Opatija, Croatia in 2011, as well as a set of commercial activities all year around that will target local universities in the Balkans, as well as media owners/publishing houses, as possible customers, interested to sponsor students or journalists in improving their skills, and consequently open the door for in house training.
Petar Subotin is the Regional Development Officer of BIRN.
For other net participants we can offer an expert guidance through trained staff, give an expert opinion, procure expert information and establish new contacts in the field of our work.