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The 2009 Annual Developing Asia Journalism Awards (DAJA) Competition

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Tokyo, Japan (14 May 2009) The Asian Development Bank Institute invites journalists from developing Asia and the Pacific to submit published articles written in 2008 or 2009 in connection with the 2009 annual Developing Asia Journalism Awards (DAJA) competition.

The subject matter of the articles should be in line with one of the following four categories (see below for further guidance on these categories)
  • Poverty impact of the global financial crisis
  • Government responses to the global financial crisis
  • Infrastructure development
  • Climate change adaptation

An international panel of judges will select the 20 best articles written by journalists who will then be invited to ADBI in Tokyo for a four-day training program running from 20-23 October 2009.

The training program will provide an opportunity for participants to discuss and debate the above four issues with leading experts. There will also be practical sessions designed to help journalists prepare clear, accessible stories that help promote economic and financial literacy.

Winners of each of the four categories, as well as two special prizes for (i) best development journalist of the year; and (ii) best young development journalist of the year (under 30 years of age) will be selected from these 20 articles. Awards will be given at the conclusion of the training program. Special prizes may be given to entrants in the main award categories or to separate entries.

If you are interested in participating in the 2009 DAJA program, please register online. When you have registered, you will be sent instructions by email of how to login to your account to submit articles.

The closing date for entries is Wednesday, 15 July 2009, 6.00 pm, Tokyo time.

For further inquiries, please contact the Journalism Training & Awards Group.

Applicants may wish to subscribe to e-newsline, our free, daily e-newsletter about regional development issues as it has samples of the type of stories we are looking for.

Guidance on each of the four categories:
Submitted articles should address at least one or more of the points listed in each category below:

(1) Poverty impact of the global financial crisis
The crisis has led to a sharp slowdown in the economic growth rates of all Asian and Pacific countries. How has this affected the lives of poor people in terms of unemployment or falls in income? Many of those who have migrated overseas from developing countries or within their own countries (as in People’s Republic of China, for example) are having to return home or are unable to send so much money back to their families. How is this affecting the income of the poor?

How effective are social “safety nets”—for example, the provision of unemployment pay or other cash benefits, health care, education allowances etc.,—in counteracting the new poverty? Do many people “slip through” the safety nets because they do not qualify for benefits for one reason or another (migrants especially)?

The prices of food and energy have declined from their peaks reached in 2008, which should have benefited the poor but what is the reality “on the ground”? Government subsidies for food and fuel have been reduced in some cases, so are people better or worse off now that prices have declined. How has the fall in prices of food and other commodities impacted farmers—small farmers especially?

(2) Government responses to the global financial crisis
Have governments in the region responded quickly enough to soften the blow of the global economic crisis? Have they done enough by way of providing fiscal stimulus (through national or local government budgets), and have central banks used monetary policy tools effectively, especially to help smaller businesses? How well or otherwise governments have reacted to the crisis – and what could have been done differently?

The dramatic fall in world trade as a result of the global economic crisis means that developing countries in the Asia-Pacific region are almost certainly not going to be able to rely on export markets to produce economic growth so much in the future as they did in the past. Instead, they will need to increase domestic consumption. What are the obstacles that stand in the way of doing this? Do people save (rather than spend) their money because they are afraid of sickness or unemployment, or because of the need to save for their old age? Are wages generally too low to permit greater consumption of goods after basic necessities such as food, fuel and shelter have been paid for?

(3) Infrastructure development
The Developing Asia and the Pacific region has enormous needs for basic infrastructure development in transport, energy, communications, water and sanitation etc. Many governments are planning for provision of new infrastructure facilities, or upgrading of existing ones, as part of their fiscal stimulus packages. Would infrastructure spending be able to achieve the objective of promoting domestic demand to sustain economic growth? In addition to infrastructure, or as an alternative to it, where should the money best be spent in order to achieve a proper balance between economic growth and its sustainability?

What would be the benefits of linking countries in the Asia-Pacific region closer together through cross-border infrastructure provision—for example, road, rail, air or sea links, energy pipelines, or telecommunications links?

What has the government done to encourage private sector involvement in building new infrastructure? What are the views of the private sector regarding public-private partnership scheme in your country? What more can governments do to make infrastructure investment more attractive to private investors?

(4) Climate change adaptation
Adapting to climate change is an urgent necessity for all countries and especially for those that are least developed economically, including small island states that are most vulnerable to natural disasters such as floods and droughts.

How is climate change impacting agriculture, tourism, water or food supplies? Do governments have in place policies to deal with the negative impacts of climate change? Do they have sufficient human and other resources to deal with the problem? How can donors and international organizations help?

Moreinfo: http://www.adbi.org/news/2009/05/14/2951.daja.2009.entries.open/

 

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