Peace Journalism – Picking Up Where We Left Off

Synopsis: Peace Journalism

Journalists have provided critical insight at various Hollings Center dialogue programs, and are an integral part of the cross-cultural dialogue networks the Center has built over the years. Several recent dialogues have focused on the journalism profession as an interlocutor of information, and on journalists’ roles and responsibilities in upholding the fourth estate of democracy.

Amidst a growing number of international crises, conflicts and wars, and under political and economic pressures domestically, journalists face multiple challenges. Not only do they need to cover these sensitive and risky matters responsibly and in a way that will not exacerbate tensions and violence, but they also need to continue their profession free from persecution while making a living. In this episode, we talk to two former journalists to understand ‘peace journalism’, a concept which defines how journalists ought to cover news at times of conflict and tension.


Ayçe Özerdem

Ayçe Bükülmeyen Özerdem worked for 15 years as an anchor and co-producer at the Turkish public TV station TRT, focusing primarily on environmental issues, disability concerns and women empowerment matters. She was also a columnist for 13 years at Hürriyet newspaper which has the largest circulation in Turkey. She completed her master’s degree in Conflict Resolution with a final dissertation entitled ‘The Role of Media in Conflict Resolution, Culture of Conciliation and Peace Journalism’. 

Özerdem is the author of several books on women’s empowerment. In 2016 and 2022 she produced two documentaries; the first one was based on her book, The Pioneer Women of the Aegean, and the second one was titled Innovative Solutions for Climate Change, Cycle of Flax. Based on her research on ancient Anatolian civilizations and cultures, her most recent book, In Search of Divine Light was published in 2019.


Uchenna Ekwo is a Nigerian-born author and Communication and Media Studies Scholar. He is currently a professor of Journalism and Media Studies at Union College, Cranford, New Jersey. Dr. Ekwo is also the founding President at the Center for Media & Peace Initiatives, New York- a media and policy think tank in Special Consultative Status with the United Nations’ Economic and Social Council.

Ekwo is the author of five books on media, focusing on conflict reporting, diaspora journalism, media’s role in democracy, and the role of journalists in Nigeria. He is a recipient of numerous awards including Ambassador for Peace Award by the Universal Peace Federation based in the US, and a nomination for the 2017 El-Hibri Peace Education Prize for his contributions towards “building inclusive and socially just communities in the United States.” 


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