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Aug 29, 2018

A Final Webinar Session with Journalists on Open Government Ecosystem in Belize

You were first introduced to the organization last week when it held one of a series of webinar sessions at the BTEC offices at the ITVET compound in Belize City, but the Trust for the Americas in Belize is a non-profit organization affiliated with the Organization of American States. Today, a final session was held that involved data journalism, particularly as it relates to the goal of having an Open Government Ecosystem in Belize. But what does that mean? According to Local Coordinator, Henry Wade, it is a system that encourages direct and constant communication between government departments and civil society and citizens to promote transparency and democracy. So it should help with public policies and best practices on accountability and ease of access to public information. Wade says that media professionals play an integral role in the process attaining an open government ecosystem.

 

 

Henry Wade

Henry Wade, Local Coordinator, Trust for the Americas [Belize]

“As part of the project we are providing online training courses for both government and civil society organizations: journalists, N.G.O.s, business community, etc. Today focuses on data journalism and it is the final of four online trainings that’s taking place. And the importance speaks to just sharing information, case studies, best practices on data journalism that’s taking place elsewhere and how can we apply that here in Belize; how can we take some of those best practices, some of those case studies and mould it to the Belizean context. So it is very important and we are having a great participation by members of the media as well as civil society organizations so we are excited to see where the media and participants take data journalism. OUT 01:47

IN 02:01 The importance of the media and I am sure you could speak to that better than I can, but we see the media as providing advocacy for being that vocal voice to carry messages, proper messages where they need to be carried; to speak to the leadership, to provide that guidance as well as information sharing and data collection to the people of the country because as you know open government and open data speaks to government services for the benefit of all citizens here in Belize. So the media has a very important role in taking data, providing advocacy, telling truthful stories that would benefit any Belizean here.”

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