Alex Renton former Oxfam and now freelance journalist raises the issue of how thin budgets are becoming and how hard it now is in the media climate to get the resources to cover complex crises
Alex Renton from the floor says journalists aren't very good at asking enormous questions about the systems aid organisations use to feed the hungry
Please send us your questions for our panel!
The panel are responding to questions - Greg Barrow of WFP responds to Peter @ British Medical Journal - we've learnt a lot about how to feed hungry people since 1984
Mike Thomson came across no other British journalists on a recent trip to Niger
Mike Thomson talks about the expectation from editors following a trip to a hunger zone that journalists will return with lots of pictures of starving people
Mike Thomson describes difficulties of covering hunger crises round the world. If you try to explain that a terrible situation is possible, there can be pressure to say it's a famine, or might be.
Tim Large says that there is a wonderful story to be told about efforts to combat hunger - but aid agencies can blow hot and cold on the "f" word when they need it
@james no that wasn't a famine. famines have many many people starving to death. this did not happen in Haiti. The aid system stopped that happening
Reporter from IRIN suggests we watch the movie "Africa Rising" - deeply moving and irritating about the situation in the continent
Jonathan Rugman from Channel 4 asks what panel thinks about aid agencies doing a lot of filming and reporting that journalists might normally do.
From a scribble-live watcher - what are the inherent tensions between aid workers and journalists?
Mike Thomson is saying that he receives tons of emails from aid agencies that will just never cover - even though they might be good stories
Mike Thomson raises the interesting issue that aid agencies struggle much more to get coverage for humanitarian stories in the US than in the UK, for example
no one can say whether it woul dhave become a famine. i don't think so because, thankfully WFP and other agencies have been in Haiti for many years, monitoring and helping the most vulnerable.
Mike Thomson - on the issue of aid agencies doing their own filimg, recalls a trip to Congo that he was kept waiting for a hours by an aid agency that was busy filming displacement in the hopes the BBC would use the footage - but that's just not the sort of thing they would use. This can be a big frustration for a journalist
Tim Large says it's ok having journalistic style material being published by aid agencies as long as it's clearly labelled. The problem is when it gets published and people don't know the source.
Some info about our panelists: - Lyse Doucet has been a presenter and correspondent for BBC World News since 1983.
She played a key role in the BBC's coverage of the wars in Afghanistan in 2001, Iraq in 2003, and the war between Israel and Hizbollah in 2006. In May 2010, Lyse was awarded “News Journalist of the Year” for her insightful and well-researched reporting on theordinary lives of people in Afghanistan and Iran.
Mike Thomson is the Foreign Affairs correspondent for BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme. He became the voice of Document in 2002. Previously he co-presented Radio 5's Morning Edition breakfast programme, worked as a reporter for Sky, PM and World TV and wrote for a string of national newspapers. Thomson won the 2010 Radio category of Amnesty International Media Awards, for the 3rd year in a row for the five-part series entitled ‘Zimbabwe: what Mugabe did not tell us’.
The discussion is breaking for coffee with a panel discussion on Somalia and Yemen afterwards
Lyse Doucet thanks panel and closes discussion
Tim Large is Editor, Thomson Reuters AlertNet. He has worked for Reuters for 10 years, previouslynas a correspondent in Tokyo. Prior to that he was a staff writer on a Japanese daily and news editor of a popular science website. He has written widely on politics, economics, social issues and the arts.
@james There are quite a few good questions from you, some were answered and we will do our best in asking the panel if we get a chance..thx and FYI, there is a break now, begin again soon
@james sure will do my best
Tim Large is Editor, Thomson Reuters AlertNet. He has worked for Reuters for 10 years, previously as a correspondent in Tokyo. Prior to that he was a staff writer on a Japanese daily and news editor of a popular science website. He has written widely on politics, economics, social issues and the arts.
Shaheen Chughtai is a humanitarian policy advisor with Oxfam GB, based in the UK. He conducts policy and advocacy work on a range of disaster response and aid-related issues around the world, including humanitarian assistance, aid effectiveness, and emergency food security. A former journalist based in the Middle East for eight years, Shaheen has reported from conflict-affected countries such as Lebanon and Iraq and helped launch Aljazeera International's English website in 2004.
@james according to Tim Large of Reuters alertnet says twitter was not actually a key factor in getting news from Haiti in the beginning. It came into play a bit later and the Haitian diaspora were using it to spread news but the reporting that came from haiti after the quake was mostly of a traditional kind.
Everyone's back from coffee - now for panel discussion on The cost of getting food to the hungry in danger zones.
Lyse Doucet is moderating again.
Some more info on our panelists :- Gian Carlo Cirri is the WFP Country Director in Yemen. He began his career as an economist for Eco’Diagnostic Analyses in Switzerland. His first position with WFP was in 1995 as a Consultant in Yemen. He went on to become an Emergency Officer in Algeria.
From 1998 he became a Project Officer, firstly in Cameroon and then in Sao Tome. He became Niger Country Director in 2003, taking up the same position in Mauritania three years later
GianCarlo Cirri, WFP's country director in Yemen is on this panel. He has also worked in Cameroon, Niger and Mauritania. Right person to discuss the subject.
Lyse Doucet introduces the second discussion "what is the cost of getting food to the hunger in extreme danger zones?"
Jonathan Rugman is Foreign Affairs correspondent for Channel 4 News. In 2009 his report on the diversion of food aid in Somalia won the TV News Award from the UK Foreign Press Association. His reporting from the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake this year helped secure the programme a BAFTA nomination. He was previously Channel 4's Washington Correspondent and Business Correspondent, and began his career as the Turkey Correspondent for the BBC World Service and The Guardian.
Ishbel Matheson was the BBC East Africa correspondent from 2000-2005, winning international press awards for her coverage of Darfur. She holds an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex. Ishbel is now the Director of Media at Save the Children in the UK.
We're going to be discussing what happened in Somalia
Richard Dowden, Director of the Royal Africa Society, first worked in Africa as a volunteer teacher at a bush school in Uganda in the early 1970s. On returning to the UK, he worked for a peace organisation in Northern Ireland and then joined The Times foreign desk in 1980. He reported from the Middle East and Africa, before being appointed Africa Editor at The Independent when it was founded in 1986. From 1995-2001, Richard was
with The Economist and has since been a freelance journalist and writer.