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Eurovision ACADEMY Assembly puts need for PSM innovation in spotlight

13 octobre 2014
Eurovision ACADEMY Assembly puts need for PSM innovation in spotlight
Members of the new Eurovision ACADEMY Committee elected at the Assembly (EBU)

100 training managers, journalists, strategists, project managers and CEOs from 36 EBU Members and 26 countries attended the 2014 Eurovision ACADEMY Assembly on 9 & 10 October. Hosted by PBS, Malta, these two days were dedicated to "Public media and digital audiences: be innovative and keep on learning".

The Assembly was opened by Tonio Portughese, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Public Broadcasting Services of Malta. Organizing the Assembly in Malta put the participants at the heart of the Mediterranean culture and reminded everyone of the richness and diversity of the EBU.

The main theme running through the event was innovation and its importance in maintaining the relevance of public service media (PSM). It was highlighted that there has never been a more urgent need to innovate, while keeping PSM's commitment to distinctiveness and demonstrating its value to audiences, politicians and business.

Finding the best people for public service media

Peter Salmon, Director of BBC England and the newest EBU Executive Board Member, made an inspiring keynote speech ("New Places, Faces and Voices: Finding and training the best people for Public Service Media") to the Eurovision ACADEMY Assembly looking at the connection between public media and digital audiences, arguing that if PSM is innovative and brave, the rewards were great.

Mr Salmon also offered advice to Members about why they should "provoke and stimulate their colleagues" into considering where media is heading and how they can improve. (Watch the interview with BBC's Peter Salmon, conducted by Gunnar Grønlund from Norwegian broadcaster NRK).

During the two day event attendees showcased some successful examples of public service programming:

  • Brendan Miller presented Free Speech, a youth edition of the famous BBC topical debate programme “Question Time."
  • Olivier Evrard, Journalist/Producer and Jean-Pierre Jacqmin, Director of News & Sport at Belgian Member RTBF presented the consumer programme "On n’est pas des pigeons," which has become a key part of RTBF schedules in the last three years..The format combines audience interaction and the cheekiness of the best entertainment programmes.
  • Marcello Bonventre from Radio Bremen profiled "Wochenwebschau", a television show that reports on ARD’s digital formats, web phenomena, numerous online platforms and social networks.

The journey into innovation continued with MoJo (mobile journalism) and "intrepreneurship". Mobile devices have changed how we can both gather and distribute content. It increases speed, flexibility and efficiency when bringing verified and trusted quality content to your audiences when and where they want to hear it.

Olivier Evrard,  Gunnar Grønlund and Jean-Pierre Jacqmin   Olivier Evrard shooting with an iPhone

Gunnar Olivier Evrard and Jean-Pierre Jacqmin use a coffee break to take a quick course on MoJo, mobile journalism (NRK/Gunnar Grønlund).


The Assembly also focussed on the evolution of professional journalism towards greater autonomy, to the extent that journalists are becoming “intrapreneurs”. Their job is no longer just to find content, but also to promote and identify new mediums of expression.

Glen Mulcahy, RTE presented the toolkit of a perfect Mojo Glen Mulcahy, RTE presented the toolkit of a perfect MoJo (#BeMoJo)

Benoit Califano, Director, ESJ MontpellierBenoit Califano, Director, ESJ Montpellier
"We need to train start up journalists who can combine content, technology and business"

Erwann Gaucher, Deputy Director France Télévisions Editions numériques Erwann Gaucher, Deputy Director of France Télévisions Editions numériques, France also presented.

Justin Kings, Eurovision ACADEMY FacultyBreak-out session about on Twitter with Anne-Marie Lupu, Eurovision News Editor and Justin Kings, Eurovision ACADEMY Faculty member,

Discussions moderated by Eurovision ACADEMY Faculty member Martina Chapman also looked at the various challenges PSM face now and in the future including:

  • The challenge of meeting our audiences where they are - on social networks etc.
  • The challenge of supporting teams to try new things and of seeing failure as a step on the road to innovation, not as the end of innovation.
  • The challenge of how to shift the mindsets of those people in our organisations who are resistant to change – at all levels.
  • The uncomfortable challenge of securing investment for training and development, even at the expense of other services.
  • The challenge of taking the audience on this journey with us. Making our organisations more open and diverse, recruiting new people with new ideas and letting the new energy breathe new life into our organizations while still maintaining our PSM values.
  • And the challenge of making sure that once people do receive training that have the chance to use those skills as soon as possible. This can mean changing well-established workflows, developing new agile approaches and making good strategic decisions.

Eurovision ACADEMY Committee

The Assembly culminated in the election of a new Eurovision ACADEMY Committee, as seen in the photo at the top. From left to right:

Daniela Pomo, RAI (Italy),
Karen Willems, NOS (Netherlands)
Mesut Ertanhan, TRT (Turkey)
Frédéric Olivier, RTBF (Belgium)
Kathrin Straesser-Knuettel, ZDF (Germany)
Mark Wray, BBC (UK) - Chairman
Nela Gudelj, HRT (Croatia)
Irina Zimonyi, MTVA (Hungary)
Dominique Champier, FTV (France)
Ingrid Thörnqvist, SVT (Sweden) - News Committee representative
Oltea Catinuanu, ROR (Romania) (not pictured)

Liens et documents pertinents