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Jefferson Fellowships: Yangon

Tuesday, November 12 Application Deadline

Spring 2014 Jefferson Fellowships

Dates: February 22-March 16, 2014

Theme: “Challenges of Democratic Transition”

Travel Destinations: Honolulu, Hawaii; Jakarta and Banda Aceh, Indonesia; and Yangon and Naypyidaw, Myanmar

About the Jefferson Fellowships: U.S. and Asia Pacific journalists participate in a three-week dialogue and travel program to deepen their knowledge of regional issues and build international networks.

Extra Opportunity: Jefferson Fellows will attend the East-West Center’s 4th International Media Conference in Yangon. The theme of the three-day conference is “Challenges of a Free Press.” Please see details below.

Who Can Apply: Working print, broadcast, and on-line journalists in the United States, Asia and the Pacific Islands. Five years of experience preferred. English fluency required. Total 12-14 fellowships will be awarded: 4-5 for American journalists and 7-9 for journalists from Asia and the Pacific.

Funding: Airfare, lodging, modest per diem and most other program expenses are provided through a grant from The Freeman Foundation of Stowe, Vermont. Additional funding is provided by the Mary Morgan Hewett Fund in Honolulu, which will sponsor a female journalist per the fund’s mission to support women in journalism in Asia Pacific and the US. Participants are responsible for a $650 program fee and all applicable visa fees and visa-related expenses. Additional funding is provided by the US Embassy Islamabad for 2 Pakistani journalists. See website for details.

Application Deadline: Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Information and applications: For more information about the program and how to apply, please visit our website: www.EastWestCenter.org/jefferson

Theme: “Challenges of Democratic Transition”

The Arab Spring marked a wave of political transition and increased hope of a burgeoning new world order based on liberal democratic principles. However, roughly two-and-a-half years after the revolutions in the Arab world, not a single country is clearly on course to become a peaceful, stable and inclusive democracy. While elections are an essential component in democratic transitions, many other elements are also key: a system of checks and balances; rule of law and access to justice; a pluralistic party system; and a robust civil society that includes traditionally marginalized groups.

The 2014 Jefferson Fellowships program will explore democratic transition and nation-building in two Asian countries at different stages of democratic transition: Indonesia and Myanmar. Indonesia ended 32 years of authoritarian rule by driving out President Suharto in 1998 following widespread protests and economic paralysis caused by the 1997 Asian financial crisis. The country has undergone meaningful democratic reform but challenges remain such as battling corruption, strengthening bureaucratic institutions, and ensuring judicial independence. Like Indonesia, Myanmar has turned away from decades of authoritarian rule and embarked upon a bold process of democratic transition, but Myanmar also faces challenges, including: formulating and administering new policies, rebuilding a moribund economy, and consolidating peace in ethnic areas.

Examining the experiences of Indonesia and Myanmar will help Fellows better understand the process of democratic transition and nation-building and apply that knowledge to what is happening in the Middle East and other countries in various stages of this transition. In Indonesia and Myanmar, the Fellows will look specifically at efforts intended to improve transparency; decentralize power; ensure greater civilian rule over the military; foster a pluralistic party system; reduce economic inequality; strengthen the judiciary; redress past injustices; and advance democratic values of press freedom and citizen engagement. The Fellowship will explore the historical struggles of ethnic and religious minorities through visits to Banda Aceh in Indonesia and dialogues with Myanmar’s ethnic communities. In addition, the Fellowship will consider how each country has engaged the U.S. and its Asia Pacific neighbors via political and economic ties and how this engagement has impacted democratic transition. Finally Fellows will each bring to the program the challenges their own countries face regarding good governance and political transitions.

The Fellows will also participate in the East-West Center’s 2014 International Media Conference in Yangon, which will focus on “Challenges of a Free Press” through keynote speakers and panel discussions among the expected 300 media professionals from more than 25 countries. The conference will look at media challenges throughout the region, including older democracies like the United States, India and Korea and newer democracies like Pakistan, the Philippines and Indonesia.

For more information about the program and how to apply, please visit our website: www.EastWestCenter.org/jefferson

Program Contact: Ann Hartman, jefferson@eastwestcenter.org or (808) 944-7619

by teru kuwayama at 2013-11-05 03:07:15 UTC | Bookmark | | Report spam→

12 Nov 2013 00:11

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