Practical exercises in media training for press officers in Kosovo
Practical exercises in media training for press officers in Kosovo

A seminar on press and publicity work was held in Pristina from 18 to 20 March 2019, in partnership with the Kosovo Prosecutorial Council. The event was targeted at press officers from various public prosecutors’ offices in Kosovo. Taking part on the German side were Wolf-Tilman Baumert, Senior Public Prosecutor and Press Officer at the Wuppertal Public Prosecutor’s Office and freelance journalist Wolfram Lumpe.

As part of its bilateral cooperation with Kosovo, the IRZ has already provided various activities on this subject. The aim of the three-day seminar was to give participants a better understanding of the organisation and structure of press and publicity work and to demonstrate, using practical examples, the ideal format for oral and written communications by and with opinion formers.

The topics of the seminar were:

  • the objectives of media work,
  • the interests of media representatives,
  • the authorities’ responsibilities for press announcements and
  • the contents of press announcements, taking the procedural situation into account, in particular as far as the presumption of innocence is concerned (investigative proceedings, court proceedings and information about legally-binding decisions in proceedings).

During the seminar, the participants were given the opportunity of working on practical exercises on the individual areas of press and publicity work. To this end, numerous interviews and press conferences were simulated. The objective here was to demonstrate the correct code of conduct in front of the camera and how to give high quality interviews, the practicalities and division of responsibilities at a press conference and how to give a short but informative statement to media representatives.

The experts evaluated all the interviews recorded by the participants and gave them professional feedback. This feedback related to the content as well as to body language. To provide even more clarity on what a press conference is all about and the mistakes to be avoided, the experts showed video clips of successful and unsuccessful press conferences and TV interviews, which they then discussed with the participants.

The participants showed a great deal of interest and said that they found the seminar very enriching and useful for their everyday work. There are plans to organise a follow-up event in June this year.