Balkan Investigative Reporting Network
The Balkan Investigative Reporting Regional Network (BIRN) is a network of nongovernmental organizations working to develop media and investigative reporting in the Balkans. Established in 2005, BIRN has a regional coordinating hub that acts as a connector for national BIRN organizations in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, and Kosovo. BIRN Hub holds trainings on investigative reporting, publishes articles, and organizes debates on pressing issues. Focused on holding the region’s governments accountable, the BIRN network pays special attention to freedom of expression, corruption, facing the past/transitional justice, and civil and human rights. It addresses these through regular, objective, high-quality reporting on environmental issues, the courts, and electoral debates. It also aims to prevent wrongdoing and raise public awareness through its continued monitoring and investigative practices. The RBF has supported BIRN since 2006. It forms one key component of the Fund’s “triangle approach” to supporting think tanks, grass roots advocacy, and investigative journalism throughout the region. RBF program staff developed this three-pronged approach for its ability to strengthen ideas, engagement, and accountability in the reform processes needed to address threats to a clean environment and healthy democracy.