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Record Interest in Global Media Conference at Lindholmen

Monday, September 4, 2023

In September, the world's largest conference on investigative journalism will be held in Gothenburg. It is now clear that there is record interest in the pre-conference of the first day, organized by Media & Democracy at Lindholmen Science Park.

From September 20th to 22nd, over 2,000 journalists from all corners of the world will gather at the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre for the Global Investigative Journalism Conference (GIJC). The day before, Lindholmen Science Park is hosting the pre-conference. Robert Olsson, chairman of Media & Democracy, is one of the driving forces behind the pre-conference.

Remind us, what is the pre-conference about, and why is it being held at Lindholmen?

"GIJC conferences always precede a pre-conference with a focus on workshops. World-class speakers in investigative journalism have the opportunity to share their insights with participants. The ambition is for each session to be as concrete as possible so that participants can take new knowledge back to their newsrooms.

The conference ended up at Lindholmen because I was involved early on in the group that worked to bring the major conference to Gothenburg, both in terms of courting the American organization that determines where in the world it will take place and assisting with its financing.

Once we had secured the conference in Gothenburg, Fojo and the Association of Investigative Journalists, the Swedish organizations that applied to host the conference, asked if Lindholmen Science Park would take responsibility for the pre-conference. A quick check with Martin Holmberg, program manager for Media & Democracy, and the answer was a resounding yes from our side."

The pre-conference is sold out with a waiting list. Why do you think there is such high interest?

"There are several contributing factors. Media outlets worldwide recognize that self-produced journalism is the path to success with readers, listeners, and viewers. Breaking news does not generate subscribers! So, the interest in the methodology that produces original news and exclusive investigations is, in a way, a survival strategy for media houses.

Furthermore, we have a world-class program committee that has put together the program for the pre-conference. Nils Hanson, Ulf Johansson, Jenny Wiik, and Hans Petersson Hammer are all authorities in their respective fields with significant networks, which has allowed them to attract the individuals they invited to participate."

What does the program look like?

"The pre-conference has three parallel tracks: AI and investigative journalism, innovation and journalism, and collaboration between different newsrooms. We decided a year ago that AI would be a central part of the pre-conference, to take advantage of the environment that Media & Democracy is in at Lindholmen. Since then, the editorial interest in AI has increased beyond what could have been predicted, which is fantastic."

What are you personally looking forward to the most at the pre-conference?

"Among the international heavyweights from major media companies, I am most intrigued by Rune Ytreberg from a small Norwegian newsroom in Tromsø. His perspective, "How AI can save small newsrooms," I believe can have a significant impact on participants, as Rune demonstrates the possibilities for small newsrooms!"

How many people will attend the pre-conference at Lindholmen, and are the guests primarily Swedish or international?

"Over 650 journalists are registered: 150 Swedish and 500 international journalists. Among the Swedish journalists, we in the organizing committee have invited around 30 Western Swedish editorial staff to participate at no cost. This initiative comes from the Västra Götaland Cultural Council, which is a partial funder of the pre-conference." 



Main Conference​​​​​:
 This is named Global Investigate Journalism Conference (GIJC), the pre-conference, Global Investigate Journalism Pre-Conference.

Dates: 19-22 September.

B: Global Investigate Journalism Network (GIJN) med säte i USA och medlemmar från 90 länder.

Swedish Main Organizers: Association of Investigative Journalists and Fojo, the Media Institute at Linné University.

Media & Democracy's Role: Responsible for planning and content of the pre-conference, led by:

Ulf Johansson, program producer, former editor-in-chief and managing editor at, among others, Bohusläningen, Nerikes Allehanda, Smålandsposten, and Sveriges Television.

Nils Hanson, senior program producer, formerly the long-time head and managing editor of SVT's Uppdrag granskning, guest professor, and honorary doctor in journalism at the University of Gothenburg.

Robert Olsson, senior advisor, steering group chairman of Media & Democracy, and CEO of Utgivarna.

Jenny Wiik, expert in investigative journalism and AI, docent in media, journalism, and communication at the University of Gothenburg and Flexit researcher affiliated with Media & Democracy.

Hans Petersson Hammer, head of the Gothenburg Post's investigative team.

Funder: The Västra Götaland Regional Council's Cultural Council is the main funder of the pre-conference.