Report of the ICA Communications Committee (ICACC)(1995/96)

    This document has been made available in electronic format
         by the International Co-operative Alliance ICA 
                         October, 1996

     (Source: Review of International Co-operation,
     Vol.89, No.3/1996 (Annual Report 1995/96), p.73-75)

                         Report of the
                 ICA Communications Committee

Executive Committee

Chairman:      Paul Dines (Denmark)

Vice-Chairman: Iain Williamson (UK)

Secretary:     Mary Treacy (ICA)

Members:       Kamal Hamdy Aboul Kheir (Egypt); Tony Luscombe
(UK); Zahid Qureshi (ICMIF); Denis Tzarevcan (France).

Membership in 1996 showed one new member from the Republic of
Korea, which brings the total to 15 members from 14
organisations in 9 countries.

Meetings and Activities
An Executive Committee was held in Blackpool on 16 September
1995, prior to the ICA Congress at the same time as a Study
Tour for the participants of the Journalist Workshop. This was
followed by a Communications Open Forum/Seminar on Sunday 17
September. In addition to a special session on Co-operative
Principles and how they can promote co-operative business
which was introduced by Chris Smith of the Co-operative bank,
the Seminar featured the use of the Internet for spreading the
co-operative message. Presenters of this theme included Allan
Foster, Head of Information at Keele University, Mercy Wambui
of EcoNews Africa, which is a network in membership of the
Association of Progressive Communications and  ARIES, the
electronic network of the European Union' Social Economy. The
Committee also held a joint meeting with the Research
Committee on the same subject followed by a reception to
launch the new ICA publication by Rita Rhodes, "The ICA during
War and Peace 1910 - 1950", for members of both committees,
which was organised in collaboration with the Society of
Co-operative Studies, UK.

The Executive also met in Geneva in February 1996, prior to a
meeting of Chairs and Secretaries of ICA Specialised Bodies in
which the Chairman and Secretary participated.

Second ICACC Workshop for Journalists
The Workshop was held in Stanford Hall, Loughborough and
Manchester with  twelve participants from Egypt, India, Kenya,
Poland, Romania, Russia, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. The
programme which was built around the needs of the participants
concentrated on feature writing, radio and TV interviewing and
desk top publishing, with special sessions on Crisis PR, 
gender perspectives in journalism, and a mini workshop on
Strategic Planning. During the ICA Congress and related
meetings, the participants had hands-on experience in
undertaking interviews, writing news items and features and in
typesetting and layout of the Congress Bulletin under the
supervision of members of the ICACC. Participants were also
introduced to electronic networking during the Communications
Seminar and had the occasion for hands-on experience at the
Internet Stand which was set up in the Exhibition area at the
Congress site.

All participants successfully completed the course and were
awarded with certificates. After the meeting both students and
resource people were issued with questionnaires which were
used to prepare the assessment report.

Feed-back on the Workshop was extremely positive with the
skills learned being judged by participants as new, useful and
relevant to their jobs. The Resource persons were impressed by
the cohesion of the group, the team spirit manifested
throughout the course and the enthusiasm, intelligence and
energy of the participants who manifested a strong personal
engagement to learning and hard-work.

Congress News Bulletins
The Communications Committee produced three eight-page issues
of Congress News at the ICA Centennial Congress with the
assistance of journalists from the Workshop for Young
Journalists from the Co-operative Movement.

Future Projects
A submission for funding by the European Union DG 23 for a
workshop for co-operative journalists from East and Central
Europe was not accepted in the Spring 1996 intake, but the
ICACC has been recommended to amend and re-submit the proposal
in October. However, the interest manifested by ICA member
organisations in the region at this stage does not warrant the
input of human resources required.

However, there has been a strong indication that the
organisation of such a workshop would be strongly welcomed by
ICA member organisations in Africa and the Secretariat will
investigate the possibilities.

ICACC efforts and support will continue throughout the future
strategies of the ICA Communications Department in promoting
the new co-operative principles, in promoting electronic
networking among co-operators, in establishing a strong
co-operative presence on the Internet and in the new
television strategy as well as the more traditional methods of
communication via publications, press releases, etc.

Future Meetings
After the Executive Meeting in Budapest on 28 October 1996, a
Communication Seminar will be held with the following

Poul Dines, Chair of the ICA Communications Committee

Andrew Booth, World Television

Zahid Qureshi, ICMIF

Byron Henderson, Centre for the Study of Co-operatives,
University of Saskatchewan, Canada