GIJN members worldwide have voted overwhelmingly to make the Global Investigative Journalism Network a registered nonprofit in the United States, and to restructure its board to ensure geographic representation from six regions. Until now, GIJN has not been registered in any country.
In an online vote held last week, representatives of GIJN’s 98 members in 44 countries voted by margins above 90% to create a nonprofit organization out of the informal network of investigative groups that began 11 years ago.
“This a great validation of how far we have come since 2003,” said Brant Houston, who co-founded GIJN with Nils Mulvad at the 2nd Global Investigative Journalism Conference in Copenhagen. “Once again, we have moved to another stage in GIJN with close to unanimous agreement.”
On the question of registering in the U.S., there were 63 yes votes, 3 no votes, and 3 abstentions. On the question of creating a new board, there were 67 yes votes, 2 no votes, and 0 abstentions.
“We had great support on this effort,” said GIJN Executive Director David Kaplan. “I’d like to particularly thank the GIJN Election Committee — Nils Mulvad and Margo Smit — and everyone else who helped and took time to vote.”
Board Election This Month
As a result of the above votes, GIJN is holding a second online election — this time to select a new board of directors from around the world.
Interested in running? Board candidates must belong to a GIJN member organization and have its support to run. We already have an impressive group of candidates. Board candidates have until this June 8 to declare their candidacy, and an election will be held the following week. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This is a very important step forward for GIJN,” says co-founder Mulvad. “Read the bios and statements from the candidates for the board, and you get the best feeling of the strength of this network. This is so great that people from all over the world are working together to lift investigative journalism to the next level.”
The new board will be responsible for overseeing GIJN’s growing initiatives to support investigative journalism, including the secretariat, conferences and workshops, and efforts to support, train, and link together investigative reporters worldwide.
The newly approved board structure will have 15 members. Six board positions are allocated to representatives from geographic areas – one each to Asia/Pacific, Europe, Middle East/North Africa, North America, Latin America/ Caribbean, and Sub-Saharan Africa. Eight board positions are “at-large,” meaning they can come from anywhere. A final position goes to a representative from the host organization of the next Global Investigative Journalism Conference, which in this case is SKUP of Norway.
Who can vote? Each GIJN member organization has a designated representative who can cast votes for up to 14 candidates. More on the GIJN election soon!