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Connecting the World

ARIJ’s 13th Annual Regional Forum, #ARIJ20
November 13 - December 21, 2020
ARIJ's 1st Virtual Forum

ARIJ20 report
What is the ARIJ Annual Forum #ARIJ20?
Why “Connecting the World”? Why a Virtual Forum?

The ARIJ (Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism) annual forum is the Arab world’s biggest gathering for investigative journalists and supporters of independent media. The 2020 Forum was held under the theme: “Connecting the World”.

The year 2020 has been phenomenal in all senses of the word. For the first time in so long, one big story has consistently been the focus of all news and investigative outlets around the world. Investigative journalists were and are still expected to be there; watching, reporting, editing, recording, and blowing the whistle on injustice and state failures. In situations like this coronavirus calamity, investigative journalists were the first responders of justice — and history. Failing to do so could’ve had global consequences, so damaging that we might as well stop calling ourselves journalists. In this context, our theme “Connecting the World”, was born.

ARIJ 2020 Forum was our 1st fully virtual Forum. With so many of us being asked to work from home and remain at home during non-work hours, we knew this was not an easy decision. However, as investigative journalists, seeing that the sky’s the limit was part of our DNA.

The ARIJ Forum is a chance to network and share knowledge with leaders of Arab and global investigative journalism movements; and is an annual event to boost reporting skills, learn new tools, and get acquainted with the latest trends in investigative reporting. There are also opportunities to network with TV broadcasters, technology companies, and universities from around the globe. Journalists will learn how to counter the legal, political, professional, economic, and societal challenges hindering the role of the “Fourth Estate” in ensuring accountability. ARIJ’s Forum is a golden opportunity to train and equip journalists to serve as society’s watchdogs in favour of democracy, transparency and the rule of law in one of the world’s most autocratic regions. It also gives Arab media lecturers and media students a chance to interact with professionals.

The 2020 World Press Freedom Index, compiled by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), shows that the coming decade will be decisive for the future of journalism, with the COVID-19 pandemic highlighting and amplifying the many crises that threaten the right to freely report on independent, diverse and reliable information.

The index suggested that the next 10 years will be pivotal for press freedom because of converging crises affecting the future of journalism: a geopolitical crisis (due to the aggressiveness of authoritarian regimes); a technological crisis (due to a lack of democratic guarantees); a democratic crisis (due to polarisation and repressive policies); a crisis of trust (due to suspicion and even hatred of the media); and an economic crisis (impoverishing quality journalism).


Take a look at one of the most significant Forums in Journalism in the Arab World. Over 1500 participants benefited from the 50+ sessions offered and 160+ speakers from 40+ countries hosted to equip yourself with the needed tools to provide better reporting.

ARIJ20 report
#ARIJ20 Speakers

Our speakers came to share knowledge and to stimulate innovation and growth in Investigative Journalism in the MENA region

#ARIJ20 Sponsors

View our partners who took part in ARIJ’s Forum and helped us create a legacy of impact.

#ARIJ20 Partners
About #ARIJ20

In our 13th Annual Forum and 1st Virtual, over 1,500 participants attended from all over the world.

#ARIJ20 was an extraordinary event as the sessions discussed a wide variety of 2020 Investigative Journalism topics and future-looking topics:

2020 Investigative Journalism Topics:

COVID-19 Investigative Journalism New Challenges: Risk Assessment and Ethics Codes

COVID-19 Investigative Journalists: Physical, Digital and Psychological Safety Measures and Assessments

Solidarity amongst Invsetigative Journalism organisations within more polarization and repressive policies

Free press vs authoritarianism' regimes with lack of democratic guarantees

Fighting misinformation, does it require journalism and/or secret algorithms?

Investigative Journalists get left behind in the media industry’s decline & economic crisis

Cross Border, Data Journalism and Open Source Investigations

Race and gender aren’t a 2020 story — they’re the story

Future-Looking Topics:

The promise of nonprofit Invsetigative Journalism vs a crisis of trust due to suspicion and even hatred of the media

Impact vs Outreach: Publishers move beyond the metered paywall

How to reach Gen Z with hardcore investigations? (Shall we pay more attention to attention & think small (screen))

The reader/listener/viewer-revenue models

Storytelling vs. Technology

Media Leadership isn’t something you learn on the job

Prepare media students for skills, not job titles

Investigative Journalism: the race to 2021

Hear testimonies from #ARIJ20 participants

Hear what our participants and supporters had to say about #ARIJ20

#ARIJ20 in pictures

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ARIJ’s 13th Annual Forum #ARIJ20

ARIJ’s annual forum is the biggest gathering in the MENA region for investigative journalists and supporters of independent media. Take a look at over 1500 Arab and international investigative journalists, coaches, editors and supporters from more than 60 countries, and benefit from over 50 edge-cutting panels and hands-on workshops. ARIJ20 was held under the theme: “Connecting the World”.