Programme’s ‘ignition guide’ sets out to fire cultural change

May 03, 2021 at 04:34 pm by admin

A new guide to help news publishers activate cultural change has been launched following a project with Facebook last year.

The WAN-Ifra handbook summarises key lessons from the Cultural Change Ignition Programme for Latin American News Publishers held from October to January 2021.

The programme worked with 30 media leaders from 15 news companies from Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico, refreshing their digital and management skills and reflecting on guiding their companies into the future.

"During the sessions, participants were invited to consider profound day-to-day cultural changes within their news organisations, conceptualise their role in society and rethink the ways they operate, compete and monetise,” says Julieta Shama, head of news partnerships at Facebook for Spanish-speaking Latin America.

WAN-Ifra’s Americas director Rodrigo Bonilla says news organisations worldwide have taken important steps to adapt to the digital era. “But some measures are just not enough: To adapt to the complexity and speed of the digital age, to remain relevant and necessary, you have to stop, think and comprehensively transform the way in which news media companies operate,” he says.

“Digital transformation requires a new mentality, which understands that change is not the exception, but the rule in the world in which we live.”

The programme included the participation of nine top-level media experts, including Columbia Business School professor and best-selling author Rita McGrath, media expert Ken Doctor, Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY Anita Zielina, and former BBC and World Editors Forum member Dmitry Shishkin.

It was led by Diego Carvajal, Regional Digital Director for Discovery LATAM and US Hispanics. 

The guide offers four strategies to help media executives initiate change in their newsrooms. Each chapter goes into detail, in a practical and visual way, to provide tips and examples from experts who spoke during the programme:

Chapter 1. Put the user at the centre
Chapter 2. Adopt a product mindset
Chapter 3. Implement effective leadership
Chapter 4. Build a data-driven strategy


The Cultural Change Change Ignition Guide for News Publishers is available for download in EnglishSpanish and Portuguese.

Inquiries: Rodrigo Bonilla, Director Americas, WAN-IFRA

Learn more about the programme here.

Sections: Newsmedia industry


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