Walkley-award winning journalists Andrew Quilty (Kabul-based freelance photojournalist), Rachael Brown (ABC) and Chip Le Grand (The Australian) travelled to China for the 2018 Walkley Foundation China Exchange program.
Over one week the Australian journalists presented masterclasses at four of China’s top journalism schools in Beijing, Chengdu and Guangzhou. They also discussed issues facing the industry globally with young media professionals at The People’s Daily, The Cover and Nanfang Daily.
The Walkley Foundation’s Communications Manager Helen Sullivan said the exchange was valuable to both the Australian journalists and aspiring Chinese students.
“The discussions with students lead to questions about everything from how to report from conflict zones, to how to use formats like podcasts to deliver news to new audiences,” she said. “Many of the students we met were worried about a future in journalism, and speaking to three award-winning and passionate reporters helped, at least, to show all that journalism can achieve.”
Ms Sullivan said participants gained greater mutual understanding of both countries and formed lasting bonds and contacts.
“This program is immensely valuable when it comes to deepening the understanding Australian journalists have of China's political and economic landscape, and by virtue of this, vastly improving their reporting on China,” she said. “They also left with a better understanding of the challenges faced by Chinese journalists and the opportunities and successes of distribution models used among Chinese media.”
The program is presented by the Walkley Foundation in partnership with the All-China Journalists Association and supported by the Australia-China Council (ACC) and Australian Embassy, Beijing. The ACC was established by the Australian Government in 1978 to promote mutual understanding and foster people-to-people relations between Australia and China.