[PCST] Cairo to host World Conference of Science Journalists in 2011 - the DETAIL

Jenni Metcalfe jenni at econnect.com.au
Thu Jul 2 20:23:13 CEST 2009

WCSJ: Back to the developing world 

The next World Conference of Science journalists will be held in Cairo,
Egypt, following a successful bid by Arab and American science journalism
associations. The winners of the 2011 event - the Arab Science Journalists
Association and the U.S.-based National Association of Science Writers -
will bring the prestigious bi-annual conference to Cairo for the first time.
The decision, made by the Executive Board of the World Federation of Science
Journalists (WFSJ), was announced on Wednesday 1 July in London, where 900
science journalists and communicators from around the globe gathered. The
London event was the 6th World Conference of Science Journalists and hosted
by the Association of British Science Writers (ABSW), which won the bid at
the previous conference in Melbourne in 2007.
The Cairo group won against strong bids from the Finnish Association of
Science Editors and Journalists (Helsinki), the Uganda Science Journalists
Association (Kampala), and the Kenya-based association, Media for
Environment, Science, Health and Agriculture (MESHA). All four bidders made
a formal presentation before an audience of 50 delegates on Monday
Pallab Ghosh, the outgoing president of the WFSJ, said the Executive Board
was especially delighted that so many of the bids had come from Africa. "It
was a difficult decision because all the bids were strong and each had their
"However, the factor that distinguished the winning bid was the
collaborative effort between the Arab and American associations. We are
certain that this will be a fruitful collaboration and that it will lead to
yet another successful conference for the Federation." 
The WFSJ, through its SjCOOP program, has been training and mentoring
science journalists in Africa and the Middle East, and 60 took part in the
initial program. One of the outcomes of the Federation's work has been the
twinning of science journalism associations, such as the Arab and American
groups - which gave rise to the collaboration that led to this successful
"It's amazing that the Arab association was created in 2004 after the
Montreal conference, and in five short years, they have won a bid to host a
world conference," added Ghosh. "It demonstrates the effect the Federation
is having in strengthening and building science journalism associations
around the world."


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