iMEdD: SUPPORTING EXCELLENCE IN JOURNALISM

Established in 2018, the incubator for Media Education and Development (iMEdD) is a non-profit organization based in Athens with a mission of promoting transparency, independence, and excellence in the field of journalism. It was founded with the exclusive support of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) and opened its doors in early 2019.

The impulse to create iMEdD arose in the context of a worldwide crisis in journalism, manifested in lack of trust in traditional media and their “replacement” by social media. The organization’s goal is to build a strong network of independent media professionals, provide a forum for exchange of expertise and best practices, and encourage quality new journalism initiatives. To do so, iMEdD works with local stakeholders from the journalism, media, and academic communities, and brings notable professionals from around the world into the conversation.

Two primary programmatic threads guide iMEdD’s work: the Ideas Zone and the incubator.

The Ideas Zone is a program for journalism students, graduates, and professionals to encounter and exchange ideas through various thematic cycles, workshops and events that cover aspects of journalism from a theoretical and practical point of view. Experienced professionals and academics from Greece and abroad give presentations and lead discussions on topics linked to the course’s theme. The programconcludes with participants delivering a project that draws on the knowledge gained and the technical support available during the course. The first three-month thematic cycle, “The Next Day: New Models, New Tools, New Reality,” began on April 1st, 2019.

The new thematic cycle of Ideas Zone titled “Newsroom Essentials,” which is designed and delivered by Columbia Journalism School, will cover the practice of data, multimedia, investigative, and entrepreneurial journalism in a condensed eight weeks. The program begins on Thursday, October 3 and runs through Thursday, November 21, 2019.

The iMEdD incubator hosts individuals, groups, and organizations—both non-profit and for-profit—with a plan for creating a new organization or implementing an innovative project. By offering the necessary know-how, strategic guidance, and networking opportunities, all in a fully equipped workspace, iMEdD aims to lift up good ideas and help these new projects come to life. Selected on the basis of sustainability, potential for application and growth, the innovative ideas they introduce, and the vision of the team or individual, organizations are hosted for nine months and projects for three. The incubator started hosting participants on April 1st, 2019.

Additionally, the iMEdD Lab will soon launch, bringing together a pool of developers, graphic designers, data analysts, and people with other technical expertise related to the practice of journalism. They will undertake projects of data analysis, surveys, articles, and reports in order to communicate them as effectively as possible through multimedia and other innovative tools. These projects will be implemented in cooperation with Ideas Zone and incubator participants, as well as academic institutions, outside journalists, research centers, and other organizations. The iMEdD Lab draws inspiration from the Dracopoulos iDeas Lab at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C. Created in 2011 with personal support from SNF Co-President Andreas Dracopoulos, the iDeas Lab helps policy experts communicate complex findings in a broadly accessible way.

Located in the city center of Athens near Syntagma Square, iMEdD’s state-of-the art facility includes tech-equipped meeting rooms, an editing suite, and a sound recording booth.

The founding team consisted of journalists Anna-Kynthia Bousdoukou and Stratis Trilikis. Anna Kynthia Bousdoukou co-founded iMEdD, where she serves as Managing Director. Since 2016, Anna-Kynthia also serves as an advisor to the Foundation on grants related to journalism and she curates and presents SNF’s monthly forum, DIALOGUES. During her 13 years of experience in journalism, she worked as a reporter on the radio, and then as a news editor, journalist and broadcast producer, while at the same time she has been a regular columnist in various outlets. Stratis Trilikis is a journalist who has served as director and editor-in-chief in various radio and TV stations as well as a war correspondent for print media for more that 20 years.Meet the full iMEdD team.

Support for iMEdD builds on SNF’s goal of helping promote excellence in journalism around the world through support for a suite of journalistic projects.