Georgian Media Partnership Program Announces Winners for 2016

The U.S. Embassy in Georgia, together with the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX), is pleased to announce the finalists in the 2016 competition of the Georgian Media Partnership Program (GMPP). Through open competition, Tabula TV and Palitra TV were selected to participate in the 2016 GMPP.

This year, partnerships between selected Georgian and American broadcasters will focus on further development and effective use of existing multimedia online resources. The goal of the exchanges is to strengthen Georgian stations as news organization with relevant online presence.

In the coming months, IREX will partner with TV outlets in the United States to establish enduring, mutually beneficial professional relationships with Georgian media organizations. This will be accomplished through partnership visits between the United States and Georgia, joint consultations, and sharing of modern media practices. Professionals from U.S. partner media outlets will visit Georgia to conduct training, mentoring, and consultations. Representatives from Tabula TV and Palitra TV will then travel to their U.S. partner stations for job shadowing and hands-on visits. In addition to these exchanges, continued online communication and virtual consultations will further assist the development of Georgian broadcasters as sustainable news organizations and for-profit businesses.

To date, GMPP activities have supported the development of 12 broadcasters in Georgia. Program participants have included Georgian Association of Regional Broadcasters and Rustavi 2 in Tbilisi, Ajara TV in Batumi, Kvemo Kartli TV in Rustavi, Radio Hereti in Lagodekhi, Borjomi TV in Borjomi, Ninth Wave in Poti, Radio Old City in Kutaisi, Guria TV in Ozurgeti, Channel 9 in Akhaltsikhe, Channel 25 in Batumi, and Gurjaani TV in Gurjaani.

Since 2011, 80 Georgian media professionals have had an opportunity to experience first-hand how TV and radio stations operate in the United States. Through the program, they have increased their knowledge in news making, content production, media management, revenue generation, sales and marketing, new media, and other related areas. Upon return, Georgian broadcasters successfully adopt new skills and methods acquired during their partnership visits and tailor them to their local needs. This has translated into improved operation of the outlets, increased quality and diversity of programming, appealing on-the-air production formats, creation of alternative revenue generation sources, increased visibility on the local market, and better targeted marketing and promotion efforts.

GMPP is funded by the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy and implemented by IREX. The program aims to promote freedom and independence of media by supporting professional growth of the Georgian media outlets.