Thomson Reuters Foundation publishes 2023 Annual Report

by Thomson Reuters Foundation
Tuesday, 30 April 2024 08:30 GMT

REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

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The Thomson Reuters Foundation has published its 2023 Annual Report, providing a comprehensive overview of our impact and financial performance throughout the past year.

Against a backdrop of global uncertainty, deepening polarisation and rising authoritarianism in 2023, the Foundation has provided critical support for journalists and vulnerable communities.

Countering threats to media freedom

Amid increasing assaults, including weaponisation of the law and online harassment, the Foundation extended its support to journalists and independent media outlets.  

Through collaborations across the globe, we provided tailored initiatives to enhance the sustainability and resilience of newsrooms. As Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine continued, the Foundation maintained its unwavering commitment to support Ukrainian media outlets navigate the challenges posed by the conflict. We also expanded our support to exiled journalists across the world to reflect the growing needs of this community.               

In response to escalating legal threats against media freedom, the Foundation partnered with Columbia University to produce a landmark report, "Weaponising the Law: Attacks on Media Freedom”. Building on the findings, the Foundation has developed comprehensive legal support mechanisms to bolster journalists' resilience against these challenges. Through TrustLaw, the Foundation’s global pro bono legal service, we have created a suite of 'Know Your Rights' guides to educate journalists on navigating defamation laws across eight countries.  

REUTERS/Agustin Marcarian

Fostering Inclusive Economies

In 2023 we brought together businesses, investors and civil society organisations (CSOs) to bolster their ability to take action to shape more responsible business practices. 

In response to the challenges faced by the private sector when reporting on the social component of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues, we launched a pilot training programme on human rights due diligence. The programme equips lawyers, sustainability and ESG professionals and finance specialists to better understand disclosure and transparency requirements related to human rights, and will be expanded globally during 2024. 

We continued our convening efforts to promote effective responses to forced labour and the climate crisis. We brought together civil society organisations (CSOs) and businesses in Colombia, India, Malaysia and Thailand to discuss issues such as child labour, forced labour and ethical recruitment, as well as training journalists on reporting on these issues. We also convened key stakeholders across the globe to raise awareness of the links between climate, inequality and labour rights.  

Legal research has been central to the Foundation’s work to promote more sustainable and inclusive economies. In 2023, TrustLaw facilitated pro bono research projects and collaborations with non-profits to address issues such as violence and harassment against women in the workplace, disability inclusion on corporate boards, and the legal rights of informal workers.  

REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Enhancing reporting on critical global issues 

2023 marked one year of our award-winning journalism platform, Context.  Our global team, stretching from Manila to Mexico City, offers reporting that contextualises how critical issues and major news events affect people, society and the environment. It provides in-depth coverage on critical global issues like climate change, inclusive economies, and the impact of technology on society.  

The platform’s commitment to impactful journalism was recognised with numerous awards, including gold at the Telly Awards and two Lovie Awards. Notably, a collaboration with TIME on the documentary ‘Too Hot to Work garnered Best Documentary at the Paris International Film Festival and won the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Global Media Competition on Labour Migration.  

With over 1.8 million page views by the end of its first year, Context has established a significant international readership. 

Protecting human rights 

As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes increasingly embedded in daily life, its governance poses significant challenges and opportunities for regulation, ethics, and human rights. In partnership with the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation, in 2023, we launched pilot training courses for journalists and CSOs in Latin  America and East Africa to raise public awareness and understanding of the human rights risks introduced by AI and Data and Digital Rights (DDR). Participants reported a vast increase in knowledge and welcomed the opportunity to make valuable new contacts. Further trainings are scheduled throughout 2024.  

Beyond AI ethics, TrustLaw has continued to support efforts to uphold LGBTQ+ rights, data privacy, climate justice, and protect women and girls.  

Context’s award-winning journalism has also investigated ongoing and emerging human rights issues from police surveillance to access to reliable drinking water, helping to raise awareness and shape public discourse.  

Celebrating our work in-person at Trust Conference 

The 2023 Trust Conference, the Foundation’s annual flagship event, marked a significant milestone as attendees were able to take part free of charge. Drawing over 600 delegates and more than 50 expert speakers to the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in London, the conference provided a platform for in-depth discussions on pressing global issues such as media freedom, the impact of technology on human rights, socio-economic inclusivity and the climate crisis. 

Highlights from the event include world-leading speakers such as social and political activists Hatice Cengiz, Sebastien Lai and Frances Haugen, as well as experts in AI ethics, Amandeep Singh Gill, UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology, and Vilas Dhar, President of the Patrick J. McGovern Foundation.  

To learn more about our achievements and priority initiatives, read our annual report. 

Thomson Reuters Foundation

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