The general assembly of the “Institute of Practical Journalism and Communication Research” (IPJ) has unanimously adopted its new articles of association and elected a new board. In future, the non-profit association will be known by a new name: the “European Institute for Journalism and Communication Research” (EIJC). Dr. Lutz Mükke was appointed the new Academic Director, and Professor Michael Haller his deputy. Stephan Seeger is Managing Director.
The new wording of the preamble to the articles of association outlines this realignment: “The ‘European Institute for Journalism and Communication Research’ (EIJC) is dedicated to the tradition of the Peaceful Revolution of 1989. At that time, freedom of the press and freedom of expression as well as independent journalism were key demands of hundreds of thousands of protesters in Leipzig. Today these freedoms are some of the non-negotiable, fundamental values of democratic European societies, yet they constantly require defence. In this regard, the members of the association are united in their conviction that researching social information structures and communication processes has a highly important role to play. The work of the institute is intended to focus in particular on the research field ‘Media and Journalism in Europe’, and as such contribute to strengthening media freedom and independence in journalism. With theory-oriented and empirical studies as well as practical projects, the institute contributes to throwing light on problem areas, the development of solutions to problems as well as to international discourse.”
Michael Haller, a co-founder of the IPJ who spent twelve years as the Institute’s Academic Director, said:
“The institute was set up to research the conditions which make independent journalism possible. It is therefore only natural that we are now using the knowledge we have acquired to contribute to strengthening media freedom and independent journalism in Europe.”
The new Scientific Director, Lutz Mükke, said about his new position:
“I am delighted about the confidence placed in me. The task this entails is challenging and, for me personally, highly appealing. The institute’s new profile reflects both my professional and my private socialisation: the events of 1989, advocacy of independent journalism and research as well as our international orientation.”
Stephan Seeger, Member of the Board and Director Foundations of Sparkasse Leipzig, said:
“The institute’s realignment will strengthen Leipzig as a media hub and represent a fitting complement to the international work of the Media Foundation. The Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig will continue to be as reliable a partner to the EIJK as it has been to the IPJ for more than a decade now.”