Media, Science, Development: The Soul Beat Extra

For people using science and media for social change... A Newsletter from the Soul Beat Team ...

This is the first issue of our special newsletter on Science and Media in Africa. It is intended primarily for journalists, editors, and media institutions and seeks to increase and improve science reporting in Africa. It may also be of interest to anyone interested in science communication and the role of science education in development in Africa.

The newsletter contains programme experiences, research reports, resource materials, and support opportunities recently placed on the Soul Beat Africa website and within our newly launched themesite on Science and Media. This initiative is supported by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

If you know someone who would be interested in receiving this free e-publication, please forward this edition to them. They can "subscribe" by subscribing to The Soul Beat (through the registration process) and indicate an interest in science and media. See



If you would like your organisation's communication work, research and resource documents, and events and trainings to be featured on the Soul Beat Africa website and in The Soul Beat newsletters, please send information to



For more information on Science and Media go to the Soul Beat Africa Science and Media website here

Please also join our networking space here
This is a space where science journalists and people working in the field can share information and collaborate.

1. The African Federation of Science Journalists (AFSJ) - Africa

This is a pan-African network of journalists who cover science and allied disciplines such as technology, innovation, agriculture, health and climate change from the perspective of research and development. AFSJ's stated mandate is to improve the quality of science journalism in Africa through capacity building, mainstreaming African science journalists within the global context, and creating interactive platforms between African science journalists and scientists.

2. Africa Science Technology & Innovation News – - Africa

This is a platform for the dissemination of news, features, editorials, and significant developments in science, health, agriculture, and climate change on, and about Africa. Operated by a collection of African science journalists, the project is a news medium that aims to give a voice to scientists on the continent and in the Diaspora. The AfricaSTI team comprises journalists practising in over 20 African countries who have been exposed to global best practices in ethics, methodology, and style of science reporting.

3. Ethiopian Environmental Journalists Association (EEJA) - Ethiopia

Established in 2006, the EEJA is a non-governmental, non-profit organisation founded by senior media professionals interested in raising awareness about sustainable development in Ethiopia. EEJA works to build the awareness and capacity of journalists to report on environmental issues, so that the media can play its role in informing and raising awareness among the public.

4. Science Journalism COOPeration (SjCOOP) - Africa and Middle East

SjCOOP, initiated by the World Federation of Science Journalists (WFSJ), offers training in science and technology journalism focusing on journalists in Africa and the Middle East. Rolled out on two three-year phases, the goal of the programme is to create a bridge between scientists and the public; promote the role of science journalists as key players in democracy and development; and improve the quality of reporting to make science exciting to readers.

5. Rwanda Association of Science Journalists (RASJ) - Rwanda

Founded in 2007, RASJ is a professional national association devoted to creating and enhancing the capacity of Rwandan journalists to report on existing and emerging science and technology challenges. The Association has a number of key objectives, including mainstreaming science journalism in Rwanda; disseminating relevant information on science issues and their impact in Rwanda and Africa; improving understanding of scientific research; influencing decision making processes; and clarifying linkages between scientific research, policy decision making, and the implications of these for human well-being.

6. A Guide to Peer-to-Peer Mentorship in Science Journalism

From the World Federation of Science Journalists (WSFJ), this science journalism mentoring guide covers aspects of mentoring, from the selection of mentees and mentors, to their evaluation. It includes guidance on the training of the mentors and etiquette for first encounter between mentor and mentee in the context of science journalism training.


UNESCO Quarterly Natural Sciences Newsletter

This quarterly newsletter provides information on the work of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in the field of natural sciences.

7. Environmental Reporting for African Journalists: 
A Handbook of Key Environmental Issues and Concepts

Published by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), this handbook was produced to provide readily available access to key environmental issues and concepts to journalists to help improve environmental reporting.

8. A Commitment to Act Now: Broadcast Media and Climate Change

This brochure summarises the 7 sessions of an international conference held in Paris, France, in 2009: Broadcast Media and Climate Change: A Public Service Remit. Organised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the conference led international and regional broadcasting unions to vow to increase cooperation in order to give media exposure to climate change.

9. Communications Handbook for Clinical Trials: Strategies, Tips, and Tools to Manage Controversy, Convey Your Message, and Disseminate Results

This handbook is written to provide practical guidance to clinical trial staff and research partners on how to anticipate and respond to the communications challenges posed by the conduct of clinical research. Using context-specific case studies and insights culled from actual communications experience in clinical trials from around the world, this resource covers communication planning, activities, and strategies involved in the implementation of a clinical trial.

10. Telling the HIV Story: A Practical Manual on HIV Prevention for Zimbabwean Print and Broadcast Journalists

Published by Southern Africa HIV and AIDS Information Dissemination Service (SAfAIDS) and supported by the Global Fund, National AIDS Council, and Population Services International, this manual was developed to enhance reporting on HIV by offering a practical training curriculum to increase the knowledge and skills of media professionals in reporting on HIV and AIDS related issues. The guide is intended for print and broadcast journalists, media owners and practitioners, editors, non-governmental organisation information officers, and students.


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