Media support: aid funding does not match donor rhetoric


Laure-Hélène Piron (TPP Director) presented her analysis of official development assistance to media and the information environment to the Governance Network of the OECD Development Assistance Committee on 6 March 2024.

The draft report can be read here. It shows that the rhetoric of governments which support freedom of expression and condemn disinformation is not matched by sufficient resources. ODA for media and the information environment has increased since 2002, reaching USD 1.2 billion in 2021, but this only represented 0.5% of total ODA in that year. When infrastructure support is excluded, ODA for media fluctuated around USD 500 million a year since 2008 (representing 0.24% of total ODA in 2021). This is despite the growth of threats facing media, such as the rise of censorship and the dominance of technology platforms.

And not enough aid directly reaches local organisations. Only up to 8% of ODA for media and the information environment (so 8% of the 0.5% of total ODA) is directly channelled to media organisations in partner countries, such as journalists, media outlets or civil society organisations working with media or on access to information.