The role of journalism in keeping people informed, holding power to account and building a sense of community is indispensable to society. This has been made especially clear during the Covid-19 crisis, where journalists have been on the frontlines of the pandemic, keeping the public informed and holding governments to account for how they respond, or fail to respond, to the crisis.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), our common blueprint for a better world created by the United Nations and adopted by all member states in 2015, are largely used as strategic guidance by governments, development actors and the private sector alike. But to find a case for supporting journalism in the SDGs one has to read carefully. Target 16.10 specifically recognises the importance of access to information laws and of protecting the safety of journalists. But journalism is also a key actor in various governance issues, such as reducing corruption, promoting the rule of law and ensuring inclusive decision-making.
In 2020, Fojo Media Institute produced a short film about the SDGs, funded by SIDA (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency). This film aims to illustrate the wider importance journalism has in promoting SDG 16, peace, justice and strong institutions and brings some examples of real-world results journalism has led to.
We hope this can help governments, development actors, private companies and citizens better recognise the value journalism has in creating a better future for the planet, as Agenda 2030 is the responsibility of all of us.