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Calls for Proposals: Story Grants for Reporting on ASEAN Issues

The CLMV Integration Series of the Reporting ASEAN program is looking for quality story proposals from journalists who are curious about issues beyond their national borders and want to go beyond their regular news routines. If this describes you, this may be your editorial project! Deadline for application: 1 March 2019.

After 20 Years, Cambodia Has Reaped Benefits from ASEAN

In recent years, Cambodia has been criticised for not investing enough in ASEAN. But this analysis by Chheang Vannarith makes the case for Cambodia viewing ASEAN as the catalyst of regional economic integration and economic diversification, a shield to protect its sovereignty and independence, and a platform to promote its national identity and prestige.

Becoming ASEAN, Two Decades Later

In this commentary for Reporting ASEAN, Kavi Chongkittavorn makes a case for why the acronym ‘CLMV’, which sets Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam apart, is increasingly out of place some two decades after they became full members of ASEAN.

Reporting ASEAN’s New Project Kicks Off

The Reporting ASEAN program has a new media skills-building program around reporting fellowships and training with the aim of understanding ASEAN integration and issues better, for stronger storytelling from the perspective of Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam, also known as the CLMV countries. Watch out for our stories.

Q & A: ‘Hostility Toward Media Can Be A Ticking Time Bomb’

Myanmar has become a case study for how disinformation, fake news and hate speech affect online space and content, and therefore, public perceptions and debates. In this Q & A, The Irrawaddy’s Moe Myint shares his insights about the challenges, some of them very dangerous for professional journalists, thrown up by the toxic online environment marked by misinformation and deep divisions in Myanmar today.

Teashop Talk: Brushing Up on ASEAN Stories

In the first episode of our Teashop Talk, Reporting ASEAN’s Johanna Son talks to senior media trainers about where coverage of ASEAN issues is in Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar and Vietnam, and what skills would help local journalists report more creatively and confidently about regional matters.

Q&A: In the New Burma, ‘Democracy Alone is Not Enough’

“I didn’t want to be a journalist, but of course I didn’t want to be a political prisoner either,” editor and author Kyaw Zwa Moe said. “But I just did what I believed I should do.” He talked to Reporting ASEAN’s Johanna Son at the July launch of his book ‘The Cell, Exile and New Burma’ in Bangkok.

Developed and Displaced in Southeast Asia

BANGKOK, Jun 30 – Families moved to distant, poorly equipped resettlement areas to make way for railways in the Philippines. Villagers still dealing with the loss of access to livelihood resources decades after dam construction in Thailand. Communities in Indonesia seeing their lands converted to palm oil plantations run by privately held concessions.

Jul 11: Launch of Book on Burma & Chat with Author

From Burma’s prisons to the 1988 uprising and to the border towns and communities of displaced ethnic groups, ‘The Cell, Exile and the New Burma’ revisits many of the stops in this Southeast Asian country’s more recent history. What does Burma’s past tell us about the future?

Q&A: ‘Accountability Separates Journalism from Everything Else’

Navigating the news in Southeast Asia requires separating fake news from professionally done media products, discernment and evaluation, highlighting how the media landscape has changed. In this Q & A with Reporting ASEAN’s Johanna Son, Hong Kong University’s Masato Kajimoto talks about the need for news literacy – and media credibility.

For Urban Asylum Seekers, Uncertainty is the Certainty

A permanent state of uncertainty is how life is for asylum seekers and urban refugees in Bangkok and other Southeast Asian cities. Often invisible in the cities they live in, they cannot work legally and do not have papers to stay for long periods of time, even if the process of seeking asylum takes years, reports Johanna Son*.   

Q&A: ‘We Have Propaganda In Our Brain’

Myanmar may be a politically freer country, but has many more challenges to media freedom today. In this chat with Reporting ASEAN’s Johanna Son,  Yin Yadanar Thein, the co-founder of Free Expression Myanmar, says the country’s undemocratic habits – including the Aung San Suu Kyi-led government’s policies toward the press – will take a long time to unlearn.

 

Media Freedom: Much More Than Just the Media’s Problem

Talk of media freedom in Southeast Asia these days has to include media accountability. It is time for the different users of the information sphere – journalists, media houses, media monitoring groups, journalism professors and researchers, consumers – to protect the space for free media to operate, Johanna Son writes in this analysis for World Press Freedom Day.

The Minefield of Reporting the Rohingya

Reporting on the Rohingya is a tricky assignment, requiring Myanmar’s journalists to pick their way between pressures from the government and from the public. Many avoid discussing the topic too much for reasons of personal safety as well as the political and financial survival of their news outlets, explains Johanna Son in this Reporting ASEAN analysis.

 

Q &A: Disaster Aid with an ASEAN Touch

ASEAN has a humanitarian and disaster response center, although many may not know it. The AHA Centre has been active in Myanmar’s Rakhine State – and has precious access owing to Myanmar’s comfort level with ASEAN – and in the wake of last year’s tensions in the Philippines’ Marawi City. This Q & A with the AHA Centre with Reporting ASEAN’s Johanna Son tells us more.

Looking for ‘ASEAN Way’ in the Rohingya Crisis

ASEAN has more credibility with Myanmar than other countries. But what ‘ASEAN way’ can it pull out of its hat to find a relevant, effective role in the humanitarian and political disaster flowing from the Rakhine state and refugee flows of mainly Rohingya people? Johanna Son looks at ASEAN’s options in this article published in the ‘Bangkok Post’.

 

 

THAILAND: Could A ‘Cleaner’ Fishing Industry Set New Norms?

Cleaning up atrocious labor practices in Thailand’s commercial fishing industry won’t happen overnight, even as an International Labour Organisation (ILO) report documents both progress and persistent problems. But experts say reforms may well lead to new norms that other countries in Southeast Asia and beyond would be pressed to follow, reports Johanna Son for the Reporting ASEAN series.

 

Q & A: Doing Sex Work Doesn’t Erase One’s Rights

“You don’t lose your human rights because you take a dollar for sex,” Liz Hilton of the Bangkok-based Empower Foundation tells Reporting ASEAN’s Johanna Son in this Q & A. But this has not been easy to push in Southeast Asia, where sex work is illegal in almost all  countries, she explains.

ASEAN’s Double Vision of Migration

Though far from radical, ASEAN’s consensus document on migration means that the regional grouping has to keep the conversation going, although it still sticks to putting skilled professionals and lower-skilled migrants in separate silos. Doing more on migration might make ASEAN closer to its constituency, as it is a bread-and-butter aspect of foreign policy. Johanna Son of Reporting ASEAN tells us more.

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