Our five core principles of ethical journalism

1.

Truth & Accuracy

Journalists cannot always guarantee ‘truth’, but getting the facts right is the cardinal principle of journalism. We should always strive for accuracy, give all the relevant facts we have and ensure that they have been checked. When we cannot corroborate information we should say so.

2.

Independence

Journalists must be independent voices; we should not act, formally or informally, on behalf of special interests whether political, corporate or cultural. We should declare to our editors – or the audience – any of our political affiliations, financial arrangements or other personal information that might constitute a conflict of interest.

3.

Fairness and Impartiality

Most stories have at least two sides. While there is no obligation to present every side in every piece, stories should be balanced and add context. Objectivity is not always possible, and may not always be desirable (in the face for example of brutality or inhumanity), but impartial reporting builds trust and confidence.

4.

Humanity

Journalists should do no harm. What we publish or broadcast may be hurtful, but we should be aware of the impact of our words and images on the lives of others.

5.

Accountability

A sure sign of professionalism and responsible journalism is the ability to hold ourselves accountable. When we commit errors we must correct them and our expressions of regret must be sincere not cynical. We listen to the concerns of our audience. We may not change what readers write or say but we will always provide remedies when we are unfair.

Our people

Board of Trustees

EJN Network

Committees

Aims, Objectives and Activities

The Ethical Journalism Network (EJN) is an international network of media professionals created to advance education, particularly education in ethics and respect for human rights.


It is founded in the underlying belief that ethics and respect for human rights, particularly freedom of expression, is a core element of democracy. Intrinsic to this is an independent, pluralist media sector rooted in respect for human rights and where journalists work freely is essential for a democratic society.


The EJN aims to advance education in and around the principles of ethical journalism, for example, education in ethics and human rights.


All materials will be freely available for the benefit of users and journalists in order to strengthen and support journalism on all platforms throughout the world.


The EJN is an independent body with no political affiliations or ideological aims.
With this in mind the Ethical Journalism Network is registered as a Charity and limited liability company in the United Kingdom with the following objective:


To promote for the public benefit high ethical standards in journalism, based on principles of truth and accuracy, independence, fairness and impartiality, humanity and accountability by the provision of education and training of journalists and the publication of useful research.


In order to further the above objective, the EJN carries out activities and programmes:

  • To advance the education, skills and competence of people engaged in all forms of journalistic work at all levels of media and across all platforms of media throughout the world;
  1. To raise awareness among journalists and media professionals through education of the importance of ethics, human rights and good governance in the exercise of journalism and the administration of news media;
  2. To encourage dialogue between journalists, media and others on the value of informed, ethical journalism in advancing human rights, conflict resolution and promotion of racial tolerance, equality and diversity;
  3. To strengthen through education the capacity of media professional groups in their promotion of ethical standards and good governance in the monitoring and supervision of journalism.

In pursuit of these activities the EJN shall, in all aspects of its work:
Promote respect for the status of journalism by enhancing levels of skill and knowledge of ethical principles within media, particularly through training and education of journalists, media managers and owners;
Prepare reports on the current ethical challenges and governance issues affecting journalists and their work, through information sharing; country missions; targeted research; and distribution of reports and materials on matters of contemporary concern to journalists and media professionals which will be freely available to all;
Strengthen co-operation between media professional groups at national, regional and international level and to work, as appropriate, with other relevant governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations in this regard;
Organise and encourage educational activities and knowledge exchanges between the media community and civil society on the EJN and its work.

Governance and Administration

The EJN is a non-profit entity and is registered as a company (7 June 2013) and a Charity (2016) in the United Kingdom and is governed by a Board of Trustees which meets at least four times a year.


The Board of Trustees, confirmed at the EJN Annual General Meeting on 20 September 2021, in London, is made up of Christopher Hird, Chair; Ashok Gupta, Treasurer; Ayshah Tull; Bernt Olufsen; Chris Elliott; James Ball; Jane Clemetson; Keme Nzerem; Kjersti Løken Stavrum; Randi Øgrey; Salim Amin; Thomas Spence and Zahera Harb.


The Board is responsible for the operations of the EJN. It maintains the EJN in line with the aims, objectives and activities of the organisation as set out in these Foundation Documents and ensures the EJN remains a going concern and in good financial standing.

The Chair of the Board is nominated from among the Board members of the EJN.


Members of the Board serve a term of three years which is renewable but for a maximum of three terms.


Members of the Board do not receive remuneration for their work, but shall have their reasonable expenses for travel, accommodation and subsistence paid for.


The work of the secretariat and the day-to-day affairs of the EJN are the responsibility of the Director who is the Chief Executive and who is appointed by the Board. The Director attends board meetings and reports to the Trustees on all aspects of EJN activity.

Articles of Association