Nineteen participants from Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Singapore and Sri Lanka attended a three-day AIBD/UNESCO-IPDC Regional Workshop on ‘Addressing Gender Bias in Media’ from 27 to 29 March 2019 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It was supported by UNESCO-IPDC.
The workshop explored the reasons behind gender bias and how to address them with gender sensitive reporting and more inclusive programme-making. There were also practical sessions on creating content and plans for addressing the situation in the participants’ work situations.
The theories included in the workshop were applicable to all types of media and all media professionals, as it focused on universal theories about how media can change attitudes.
The workshop applied many theories on how to address unconscious biases in media and explored how to use the theories to create content that is gender sensitive but has impact and relevance for audiences.
The second half of the workshop looked at practical training where participants applied these theories to plans of action and content design for where they work, creating new persuasive story ideas and approaches in different formats for broadcast content. It involved identifying and designing strategies to improve women’s positions at all levels in the media industry.
The participants were also asked to research local examples to be presented and worked on during the workshop, examples of good and bad practices, plus content and gender attitudes in their respective countries.
Turan Ali was the trainer for this workshop. He has almost 30 years of BBC production experience, former director of international media training centre RNTC, as well as trainer and consultant with international standing.
In addition to Mr Ali, Ms Suw Charmen Anderson, founder of Ada Lovelace Day, an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics also joined the workshop, via Skype, to share her experience and research on the subject of Women Representation in Media and other major fields.