Global Research / MIRH/ 20 October 2022
By Tarik Jusić and Heather Gilberds
For years, democracy around the world has been in retreat. Dictators have made every effort to reassert their hold on power, with independent media often a first line of attack. Despite this troubling trend, movements for democracy are constantly emerging, ushering in new windows of opportunity for democratic progress. Reforming the media sector is central to ensuring the success of a democratization effort. Yet, the path to progress is not straightforward—reform efforts can easily stall, and media advocates face strong headwinds as they contend with entrenched political and business interests vying for control of the information space.
By examining past and current political openings—Burma, Ethiopia, Sudan, Tunisia, and Ukraine, this report explores how media sector advocates advance a progressive reform vision during democratic transitions and how the international community can best support them.
The case studies demonstrate the importance of contextually tailored support for media, and highlight the key role of civil society as a driving force for a media reform agenda.