A Message from the Director
After 20 years of supporting journalists to report in more than 115 countries, the International Reporting Project (IRP) is ending its programs effective in February.
It’s been an amazing 20 years. When we began IRP in 1998, the idea of sending journalism fellows to do actual international reporting was quite new. So was the concept of using foundation support to pay the costs of in-depth journalism. Today such support is a vital cog of the future of journalism.
I want to thank our 651 Fellows for their talent, friendship and support. It would take a 651-page book just to begin to list the accomplishments of the great journalists who’ve reported with IRP, either on solo fellowships or on IRP-organized group trips. Many of these journalists continue reporting on international issues, sometimes facing risks and hardships the public never hears about. Thanks to all of our alumni for producing outstanding stories that have run in virtually every major outlet in the world.
Thanks also to our generous donors, the foundations that underwrote IRP for 20 years. Without accepting a penny of government or corporate funding, IRP was able to send journalists to every country in Asia, virtually every country in Africa and Latin America, as well as to Europe, North America and the Middle East. Although funding has now fallen short of what we need to run the program as we would like, for two decades our donors made possible thousands of stories that reached millions of people around the world.
Thanks as well to the two Washington DC institutions where our program was based: New America, where IRP has been for nearly two years and, before that, the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University.
And thanks to all of my wonderful colleagues who have worked at IRP since 1998. Deputy Director Glendora Meikle and Senior Communications Associate Riker Pasterkiewicz are continuing to make IRP’s final days as vital as any of the 7,000-plus days in our program’s history. We’ll keep IRP’s website accessible at www.internationalreportingproject.org, as some IRP Fellows are still in the field reporting. The site is still a pretty good resource for the thousands of stories we’ve produced – from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe – over the past two decades.
In-depth coverage of critical global issues is as important as ever. I know that many great journalists will continue to report those stories in the years ahead.