August 8, 2018
Freedom House seeks proposals from both rising and experienced independent researchers, scholars, and affiliated research analysts, especially those based in Moldova, the Eastern Partnership region, and the European Union, for forward-looking briefs on the following themes:
Theme 1: Media and the 2019 Parliamentary Elections
As the ramifications from the annulment of the June Chisinau mayoral elections continue to unfold, people are looking towards the upcoming parliamentary elections with anticipation and concern. Broadly speaking, Moldova’s media received much criticism from local actors and the international community for its biased coverage of the 2016 presidential election, which included many instances of favoring one candidate over another. With the Moldova’s status as an aspiring, stable democratic country, media outlets have a particular responsibility to objectively cover elections.
This brief would examine the expected role and demonstrated behavior of Moldovan media institutions in relation to the 2019 parliamentary elections, slated for February 24, 2019.
Theme 2: Media Regulation and Reforms in Moldova
Moldova has taken steps to carry out reforms in the media sector with varying degrees of success. Media concentration, lack of pluralism, and manipulation - both internal and external – are just some problems that continue to plague the media environment. At present, regulation predominantly rests with the law, in particular the new Audiovisual Code currently under consideration, while self-regulatory bodies such as the Press Council are examining methods to strengthen its reach and credibility in the eyes of journalists and the general population. The interplay of these efforts is critical to ensuring that Moldova fosters a high-quality media sector that contributes to a legitimate information space.
This brief would examine reform processes, key institutions and actors, their complementarity, and the responsibility they share in improving Moldova’s media environment.
Theme 3: Professional Journalism and the Future of Moldova’s Media Landscape
As Moldova’s developing media environment has struggled to maintain credibility and establish independence, the profession of journalism has faced serious questions about its role and responsibility in the process. Dedicated and well-trained journalists are instrumental to promoting a vibrant media sector, and the lack of such professionals in Moldova poses a serious problem to the future of Moldova’s media landscape.
This brief would consider the present regulatory, ethical, socio-economic and political conditions for journalists in Moldova, while offering recommendations on how to facilitate opportunities for growth and unity within the profession.
Please submit concept proposals to [email protected] by September 30, 2018, with “Moldova Policy Briefs” in the subject line. The concept proposal should consist of an abstract of no more than 200 words, an outline of the argument and recommendations to be presented, and a CV of the principal researcher or researchers. Organizations may submit proposals for more than one brief. The priority will be given to concept proposals submitted in English.
Contracted researchers will be asked to deliver a draft of 2500-3000 words by November 30, 2018. The brief will be published by Freedom House, with the byline and affiliation of the scholar or researcher. An honorarium of $250 per brief is provided.
This is a joint project of Freedom House’s Europe & Eurasia Program and Nations in Transit research program, made possible with generous support from Internews and funded by the United States Agency for International Development