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Our Research

We research how best to support journalists to produce the impactful climate and environmental coverage we so urgently need.

EJN regularly commissions studies designed to uncover ways to make the practice of climate and environmental journalism more effective, inclusive and fair. What are journalists' perceptions of climate mis/disinformation? How can reporters safely ensure that those in power are held accountable? Why do certain stories lead to outcomes, while others don’t? What kind of training opportunities do environmental journalists need while reporting in the face of myriad and mounting challenges?

The following research reports seek to answer these questions and many more. 

East africa misinformation cover

How journalists find, verify and use climate information in East Africa

In September 2023, EJN launched a research report documenting the extent to which journalists in Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania understand climate mis/disinformation, and whether they have the tools to combat its spread, as the need for accurate and relevant climate reporting in the region grows more urgent than ever.

The research was undertaken to achieve the following objectives:

  • Determine the climate change reporting habits among the journalists in East Africa
  • Explore journalists’ perceptions and understanding of climate change
  • Assess journalists’ perceptions regarding climate mis/disinformation and the practices surrounding it
  • Ascertain the need for training on climate mis/disinformation

Among several interesting findings, the report reveals significant gaps in journalists' knowledge, underscoring the need to further support climate reporters in East Africa to improve their climate reporting skills.

“There is clearly a lot of uncertainty, if not actual misinformation, about certain basic principles of climate change."

EJN Career Impact Report Cover

How EJN's support impacts environmental journalists and media outlets

This report was commissioned to assess the degree of impact, if any, that support from Internews' Earth Journalism Network — in the form of fellowships, trainings, story grants and organizational grants — has had on the professional development of grantees, as well as to identify actionable recommendations for EJN to take on board as it enters its third decade of work.

The research was undertaken to achieve the following objectives:

  • Identify impacts on the career trajectories and professional output of the journalists that EJN has supported, which can include career advancements, awards, better quality of coverage produced and other similar professional milestones
  • Identify a sampling of the impacts that EJN’s support has had on the quality of coverage produced by individuals and organizations that received it
  • Understand how EJN’s support contributed to these changes and identify any other factors that also led to these changes

Launched on Earth Day 2023, this report reveals the extent to which journalists and media organizations attribute positive developments to EJN’s support. It also points to a small set of targeted recommendations that would further strengthen the impact of EJN's support.

“Looking holistically at the results, the evidence suggests that EJN has had an impact on journalists and journalism on several levels.”  

Cover of Improving Environmental Outcomes through the Media

On-ground impacts and challenges of environmental media around the world

Journalism can — and does — have profound impacts on public understanding and policy: It holds governments to their commitments and demands accountability of those supporting damaging environmental practices.

For many years, EJN has sought to better understand and document the nature of these impacts, developing a methodology to track the positive changes that emerge from the work we support.

In service of this goal, in late 2020, EJN commissioned a team of external researchers to build on our work, allowing us to evaluate the impact of the support we give to environmental journalists and media outlets in a more targeted way. Specifically, we wanted to know:

  • Why do certain stories lead to impacts or outcomes, while others don’t? What are the features or characteristics of these stories that may influence how they are received?
  • What can media outlets, journalists and organizations like EJN do to increase the potential impact of the stories they produce?
  • How can we expand our methodology to continue monitoring impacts from our work?

The resulting report answers these questions and many more, detailing how EJN’s support makes a difference in building the capacity of journalists around the world to report on the environment and climate change.

“The relative strength of civil society and connectivity are important factors that contribute to a story’s influence and ability to prompt actions.” 

Where are the Women Cover

Recommendations to advance gender equality in the media

In December 2020, EJN began a research project to determine how journalists who have received grant support and mentorship from EJN include women in their reporting, or fail to do so. It asks: How do reporters think about gender? What potential barriers do they face when seeking to include women’s voices in their stories? How do social and cultural views of women create challenges to inclusion?

During the project, EJN worked with researchers in four countries — Pakistan, India, Indonesia and the Philippines – to conduct interviews with journalists and experts about the barriers women face as journalists and as sources in the media. The findings expand upon a pilot study EJN conducted as part of Reflect Reality, a methodology Internews launched in 2019 to increase women’s visibility in the news media.

Overall, the report reiterates that more work needs to be done to advance gender equality in the media. It presents a dozen recommendations for how EJN and other organizations can support journalists in making their work more gender balanced.

“One of the main solutions identified for addressing global sustainability is empowering women, so journalists covering those topics and related issues should also prioritize women’s voices.”