School of Global and International Studies and National Endowment for Democracy launch partnership

  • Nov. 29, 2016


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The Indiana University School of Global and International Studies and the National Endowment for Democracy will formally launch a new partnership at noon Dec. 1 at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center in Washington, D.C.

Dana Priest, Washington Post investigative reporter and Knight Chair of Public Affairs Journalism at the University of Maryland, will moderate "Democracy and the Media Challenge in the 21st Century," discussing issues central to the partnership that specifically involves the endowment's Center for International Media Assistance. A capacity audience is expected for the event.

The partnership between the National Endowment for Democracy and the School of Global and International Studies establishes the Mark Helmke Postdoctoral Scholarship on Global Media, Development and Democracy, a postdoctoral position intended for a scholar whose expertise is in developing international independent media, as well as multiple internship opportunities for School of Global and International Studies students.

The first Helmke Scholar, Elizabeth Stein, will be part of the discussion along with Paul Helmke, director of the Civic Leaders Center, professor of practice at the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs and brother of Mark Helmke; and Jeanne Bourgault, president and CEO of Internews, an international nonprofit organization that promotes improving the quality of news and information reported by media around the world.

The event will be preceded by remarks from Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif.; School of Global and International Studies Distinguished Scholar and former Sen. Richard Lugar; National Endowment for Democracy President Carl Gershman; and School of Global and International Studies Dean Lee Feinstein.

"As CIMA marks its 10th anniversary, it is very meaningful to honor someone so integral to its establishment, Mark Helmke," Gershman said. "The Helmke Scholarship and NED’s new relationship with Indiana University will further enrich and extend the important work CIMA has been pursuing with great success in the field of media development. This partnership comes at a critical time when we need to develop deeper understandings of the role that media play in building and sustaining democratic systems."

"The School of Global and International Studies is proud to be partnering with the National Endowment for Democracy to better understand the factors that foster good governance in transitional societies and to provide internship opportunities for our students in Washington and around the world," Feinstein said.

The postdoctoral position is named for the late Mark Helmke, longtime press secretary to Sen. Lugar, former communications director for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and former journalist for the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel. Helmke was known for his work in democracy projects in Latin America, the Philippines and post-Soviet Ukraine, as well as working to bring down apartheid in South Africa. During the two-year appointment, the Helmke Scholar will develop deeper understanding of the challenges facing countries trying to create sustainable independent media and help provide practical solutions for policymakers, political reformers and international donors.

Stein joined IU from the State University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. Stein earned her Ph.D. in political science at UCLA. Her expertise is on the role of the media in post-authoritarian transitions. She recently co-authored "Countering Coups: Leadership Succession Rules in Dictatorships." At IU, Stein holds a joint appointment with The Media School.

An initiative of the National Endowment for Democracy, the Center for International Media Assistance is a research and knowledge platform whose mission is to improve the effectiveness of media development around the world. The center convenes donors, implementers, academics and other stakeholders in the media development community. It coordinates working groups and discussions, and it commissions reports and commentary on issues critical to the field.

The School of Global and International Studies at Indiana University prepares students to meet global challenges, interpret international events and examine crucial contemporary issues that transcend national and regional borders. The school also researches and teaches the languages, histories and cultures of strategically important regions, building on IU’s storied tradition in these areas. Housed in a new, state-of-the art, LEED Gold-certified building, the School of Global and International Studies is adding 25 new faculty members, reflecting one of the country’s top commitments to international studies.

This event is by invitation only and is open to the media. Credentialed journalists must register by email at

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Lee Feinstein

Lee Feinstein

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Dana Priest

Dana Priest | Photo by Knight Foundation

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Chuck Carney

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  • School of Global and International Studies
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Jane Riley Jacobsen

  • National Endowment for Democracy
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