Methods of stakeholder engagement

Civic journalism is a method that allows people to get accurate information about community or project-connected issues that will later allow them to make informed decisions related to different topics in debate. It can take the form of a community blog, news website, newspaper, on-line or offline radio or television station. Still, the main point is that stakeholders are the ones generating the content, with your support.

Although it needs some more resources than other methods and not every stakeholder can become a journalist and participate in this method, this approach can be extremely useful in engaging your stakeholders and empowering them to be the ones coordinating part of your engagement efforts. Information coming from within the community will be better received than information coming just from your organisation, which may be considered to be biased by your interests. Moreover, unlike traditional journalism, civic journalism does not rely on advertising for being sustainable, so it can concentrate less on the topics that bring in publicity and more on what is really important for the community.

The basic steps for setting up a community journalistic initiative are:

1. Finding volunteer or paid journalists from the community that are willing to coordinate or participate in this.

2. Deciding on the best platform for them to disseminate the news (e.g. community blog, news website, newspaper, on-line or offline radio or television station). Set it up and gather the necessary resources (e.g. computers, cameras, recorders, microphones)

3. Have others join this initiative, even if they are not professional journalists. Offer them training and mentor them in the process.

4. Promote the new civic journalism platform.

5. Create the content and make it available to the public.


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