To help new members and those unfamiliar with the processes and rules that govern GFMD's General Assembly we have put together some answers to some frequently asked questions.
Please note that these questions are abridged summaries. Full details are available in the GFMD Constitution.
A new draft of the Constitution will be discussed and voted on by members ahead of the General Assembly.
It is taking place a year later than planned due to the pandemic.
(Under the proposed new constitution, the General Assembly will take place every year but will only meet in person every four years to elect a new Steering Committee.)
The programme is prepared by the Steering Committee in consultation with members.
The General Assembly is constitutionally mandated. Attendance and voting rights are accorded only to GFMD general members. Its procedures are governed by the GFMD Constitution.
The General Assembly normally takes place every four years alongside a wider conference for the wider media development and journalism support community that involves - among others - donors, partners, and supporters, as well as GFMD members.
Meetings of the General Assembly (and a wider conference alongside it) have previously taken place in Amman (2005), Athens (2008), Makhanda/Grahamstown (2012), and Jakarta, (2016).
In the past, the conference that occurs at the same as the General Assembly has been referred to in different ways, including:
- Global Forum for Media Development (also known as the Global Forum).
To avoid confusion the Secretariat proposes that the future meetings are referred to using the following naming conventions:
Global Forum for Media Development - General Assembly - Tirana, 2021
The Global Forum for Media Development's General Assembly will take place in Tirana in 2021.
The General Assembly of the Global Forum for Media Development of 2021 took place in Tirana, Albania.
The short answer is, no.
Sadly, due to the pandemic, this year's General Assembly will bear little resemblance. It will be a scaled-back affair with some delegates attending in-person, with the majority attending and participating online.
The agenda for the 2021 General Assembly of the Global Forum for Media Development can be found here:
The General Assembly:
- Receives and approves a financial and activity report from the Steering Committee (the report is prepared by the Secretariat)
- Decides on policy and overall strategy and priorities
The Steering Committee
- Manages and oversees GFMD affairs
- Deals with major strategic and policy matters facing GFMD and its membership between the quadrennial General Assembly.
Steering Committee members need to dedicate 2/3 hours per month to:
- Attend Steering Committee meetings
- Communicate with GFMD Executive Director
- Participate in strategic decision making, providing inputs and guidance.
No, Steering Committee members do not receive remuneration for their engagement with GFMD and they are generally expected to cover their travel expenses for an annual in-person meeting.
In exceptional circumstances, on a case to case basis, GFMD may cover some of these expenses.
The current Steering Committee was elected at the Global Forum for Media Development - Jakarta, 2016.
Any GFMD general member can nominate a representative to be a candidate for the Steering Committee at the General Assembly.
The Secretariat has proposed reforms to the composition of the Steering Committee to make it more efficient and representative.
- The proposed new structure is published in the new Constitution (See Articles “6.2.1 Categories of members” and “6.2.2 Composition”)
General members must have paid their 2021 (and previous) membership fee to be able to nominate a representative to be a candidate for the Steering Committee.
Members must have paid their 2021 (and previous) membership fee to be able to vote.
The Secretariat is also proposing two additional committees to be added to GFMD statutes. Read more about them here. (See article "6.9 Steering Committee subcommittees")
Under the new GDMD Constitution the Steering Committee has three subcommittees:
Only the Executive Committee is elected at the Steering Committee on 30th September following the GFMD General Assembly.
The others will be elected at the next Steering Committee Meeting.
6.9.2 General purpose of subcommitteesSteering Committee subcommittees shall play an advisory role to help guide the Steering Committee and Secretariat about matters falling within their mandates. Subcommittees shall not have decision-making powers but shall be able to act in a more flexible and efficient way to advise the Steering Committee, Executive Director and Secretariat staff, in accordance with this Constitution.
For more details see the article "6.9.3 Executive Committee" of the new Constitution. (The previous version is available here)
Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson, and Treasurer.
- Chairperson: Ricardo Corredor, Fundación Gabo (Colombia)
- Secretary-General: Jan Lublinski, DW Akademie (Germany)
- Treasurer: Thierry Vallat, CFI (France)
The Chairperson of the Executive Committee also chairs meetings of the GFMD Steering Committee.
The Chairperson also acts as a figurehead for GFMD alongside the Executive Director.
To implement GFMD's strategy and activities in partnership and collaboration with our members and partners.
Profiles of the GFMD Secretariat are available on the GFMD website:
The draft agenda for the 2021 General Assembly:
The rationale for proposed changes and the first draft of an updated constitution was shared with all members on August 13th:
The final draft of the updated GFMD constitution that will be voted on by members ahead of the General Assembly is available here:
The draft strategic plan for 2021-2025 that will be discussed at the General Assembly is available here: