Janet McBride - Sometimes I'm curious about what aid agencies want from us when they contact us about an emergency somewhere. I see input from aid agencies as part o fthe jigsaw, part of conveying the picture of a country in need.
Brendan Gormley is talking about Niger and the challenge for aid agencies of getting more coverage - it's been extremely difficult. He was told by senior journalists that to get that covered they would need to find a way to tie into the Nigeria and Ghana football teams!
Gormley - The best media teams in agencies are those driven by the same principles as journalists they're talking to.
Thanks @Jesse Osmun - we'll be discussing just those crucial issues sustainability in the next panel debate. We'll put your questions to our panel and keep you posted of replies!
Charles Vincent says giving decision-makers and the media accurate, full information in the end will bring more money than issuing an appeal
Do governments respond more generously when a major paper picks up a story? Yes, absolutely, says Brendan Gormley
Brendan Gormley says in his view that WFP shouldn't be developing another competitive fundraising effort in what is an already crowded arena
We really risk slicing the cake too thinly with so many organisations competing for the same funds. It costs to raise money, says DEC head
Do journalists have a responsibility to people caught in the middle of a crisis? Should journalists take that into account when deciding which stories to cover? Let us know your views and we'll put them to our panel!
Charles Vincent: I don't see a problem with getting money from companies as well as governments. Ww try to identify private partners that are enthusiastic about our core mission. We often use non-financial resources, expertise, equipment.
We sometimes over-mediate the views of people caught up in crises - new media is exciting as it gives them the chance to tell us how they feel, directly, Brendan Gormley
Too much effort is spent by agencies competing with each other - Brendan Gormley
Gormley - agencies expend too much effort going into showing how each is different and important and not enough into getting the bigger picture out about countries in need
McBride - There is tension between journalists and aid workers and delving into that would make quite an interesting story
Jo @ Tearfund, from the floor - the media has a role in preventing food crises rather than reporting them only when they are at their peak
From Roger @ Plan - many crises are created by failures of governments - how can we do more to help people influence their own governments to take more responsible policies
Vincent - countries like Niger, govts say that if you use the "F-word" you are out, problem first comes from the grass roots level
McBride, asked about media's responsibility in preventing hunger crises, says what media can do is report faithfully on some of the underlying causes of many emergencies. Because many humanitarian crises are not natural disasters, it's totalitarian govts, corruption and other such things.
Gormley - We have not done a good job in reporting news locally, always pushing news out because it is in our (the west) own interests and we need to refocus some of our eforts with local media and talk to community leaders and get their messages out
Brendan Gormley - the aid world needs to do more to engage local media rather than simply driving all their messages out internationally - we need to explain better to local populations about what we're doing. There's a serious need to refocus our efforts
I was in Niger recently and I met many people who were just relieved to talk about their hunger...They told me that the former administration didn't want anyone to talk about hunger and this led to many suffering people... How does one talk about hunger in such conditions when even the hungry can't talk about it themselves...
@George - Janet McBride replies to your question with: We should be looking at underlying causes of hunger more as journalists - more often than not it's human failings like corruption are to blame - this is our story to tell
Adrian has been asked whether broadcasters are able to cover things that are issue-based rather than being reactive to events
Adrian Finighan of CNN says unfortunately it's a frustration of the job - that commercial broadcasters struggle with covering issue based stories
McBride - The reason why Reuters can cover Yemen, Somalia etc because investors are interested in these issues, they affect their decisions
Adrian Finighan - commercial television does mean you're in the business of getting eyeballs on screen and so there is less scope for issue-driven journalism, issues like hunger only come up when something dramatic happens.
Vincent - Sometimes aid agencies can help facilitate reporters on the ground in risky areas to help them get their stories out
This session is concluding.. a short comfort break and we'll be back
The next session is going to be really interesting -- the future of food aid to be debated here live soon "Intelligent food aid – moving beyond bags of rice and maize."
Info on our last group of panelists: - Josette Sheeran became the 11th Executive Director of the UN World Food Programme
in April 2007, overseeing the world's largest humanitarian agency. Josette is currently serving as Chair of the High Level Committee on Management which ensures coordination across the UN system. A former US Under Secretary of State for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs, Josette was previously managing editor of a major U.S. newspaper, and regularly appeared on TV news as a commentator, twice serving as a Pulitzer Prize juror, including for foreign reporting.
WFP Executive Director Josette Sheeran to take part in discussion of 'intelligent' food aid, starting in a few seconds
Alex Renton is a former coordinator of advocacy and media for Oxfam in Asia. Now an award-winning journalist on development issues, food policy and culture, he writes in the Guardian, Times, Observer and Prospect magazine. He recently won “Food Journalist of the year” for the second time.
Simon Maxwell is a Senior Research Associate of the Overseas Development Institute, the UK’s leading independent think-tank on international development and humanitarian issues. He was Director of ODI from 1997-2009. He worked for 10 years overseas, in Kenya and India for UNDP and in Bolivia for the British aid programme, and then for 15 years at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex, where he worked principally on food policy and food security. He was awarded a CBE in 2007, for services to international development.
Feike Sijbesma has been Chairman of the Managing Board of DSM since 2007. A global life sciences and materials sciences company, DSM joined forces with WFP in April 2007 to ensure that the nutritional needs of WFP beneficiaries are met through the creation of cost-effective micronutrient interventions to improve the general food basket. Passionate about DSM’s strategic partnership with WFP, Feike is raising awareness about hidden hunger – micronutrient deficiency – and driving innovation within the business to develop tailormade solutions for the developing world. He is determined to make nutritional security a key component of the MDGs.
actually there's no such thing as a food aid 'bag'. Food aid varies according to the circumstances
Adrian Finighan introduces the fourth and final session - we'll be talking about innovations including cash & food vouchers, and nutritionally enriched food