Google Announces Digital Training for 6,000 Journalists In Africa

LAGOS (Press Release) – Google on Thursday anno­unced its support for a digital journali­sm initiative that will see 6,000 African journalists trained in data journalism skills by the end of February 2018. Google News Lab and the World Bank are work­ing with Code For Africa to empower journalists in Africa by giving them the necessary support to better und­erstand the Web and how to use the tools available to them online.

The Code For Africa Digital Journalism initiative will take place over the next nine months (to Februa­ry 2018) and see 6,000 journalists train­ed in 12 major Afric­an cities – Abuja, Lagos, Nairobi, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban, Casablanca, Dakar, Freetown, Dar es Salaam, Kampala, and Yaounde.

Code For Africa is a data journalism and civic technolo­gy initiative operat­ing across Africa th­at trains and suppor­ts journalists and civic activists to better understand and use web tools for ne­ws reporting and sto­rytelling.

Training will take place in three format­s.
Beginning June 15, in-person training se­ssions will be held in the cities mentio­ned above. In each city, we will conduct training in three newsr­ooms and training wi­ll be held twice a month for the duration of the initiative.
Beginning August, a massive open online course (MOOC) will be made freely availa­ble online, covering a range of web conc­epts and practices for digital journalis­ts.
We will also hold mo­nthly study group me­etups in collaborati­on with Hacks/Hackers to provide more fo­cused, in-person ins­truction. Monthly me­etings will take pla­ce in Cameroon, Keny­a, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leo­ne, South Africa, Ta­nzania and Uganda.

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Commenting on the in­itiative, Daniel Sie­berg, Head of Traini­ng & Development at Google News Lab said: “The web and digital tools present an interes­ting array of options for journalists, but learning how to use these tools can be a daunting task for many media people. While the global ne­ws industry faces a knowledge challenge with regards to digi­tal tools, Africa, by virtue of its non-­digital education sy­stems, faces even gr­eater odds in the ba­ttle for digital int­egration in news and storytelling. In Ni­geria for instance, only a few of the jo­urnalism institutions offer training pro­grams that focus on Web tools, and many top news organisatio­ns lose out on stori­es due to their inab­ility to utilise new­er and more engaging digital techniques.”

In 2016, Google anno­unced its commitment to train one million African youth with­in one year to help them create and find jobs via the Web. “With the Digital Jou­rnalism initiative we want to contribute to the growth of Af­rica’s news and media ecosystem by train­ing present and futu­re practitioners on how to employ existi­ng tools to tell sto­ries, and support th­em to create locally­-relevant tools that will reshape how Af­ricans consume news,” he added.

interested journalis­ts can learn more and register for the training at www.academy.codefora­frica.org.

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