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2016 – 2017 Vaclav Havel Journalism And Jiri Dienstbier Journalism Fellows

VH and JD Fellowship
VH and JD Fellowship

​​Salome Apkhazishvili, Georgia: Ms. Apkhazishvili is a journalist from Georgia who previously hosted a daily student talk show on the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs Radio (Radio GIPA). As a reporter for the Georgian Public Broadcaster in Tbilisi, Ms. Apkhazishvili focused on cultural heritage, urban planning, education systems, Georgian foreign affairs, and regional conflict in relation to ethnic and religious minorities. Ms. Apkhazishvili has a Masters in National and Ethnicity studies from Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University, and speaks Georgian, Russian, and English.

This documentary shows the problem and suggests the recommendations regarding why we need digital literacy and how can we inform the citizens about its importance. The documentary was prepared for the Vaclav Havel Journalism Fellowship (Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty).

Stefan Grigorita, Moldova: Mr. Grigorița is a journalist from Moldova and was a political correspondent and data journalist for and Mr. Grigorita also worked in multimedia at the Governmental Republican Centre for Children and Youth. He studied International Relations and Political Science at the State University of Moldova, and then continued his studies at the Chișinau School for Advanced Journalism. He speaks Romanian, Russian, English, and French.

Ksenia Churmanova, Russia: Ms. Churmanova was most recently a writer and editor for the Russian business magazine, Expert.Prior to this position she was a journalist for numerous broadcasting and online media outlets in Ekaterinburg and Saint Petersburg, reporting about social and economic issues. In addition to her regional journalism practice, Ms. Churmanova had an academic focus on international media democracy narratives within BRICS countries, and participated in the Academy of Finland’s project, “Media Systems in Flux: the Challenge of the BRICS Countries.” Ms. Churmanova received her B.A. from Ural Federal University, Ekaterinburg in Broadcast Journalism, and her M.A. from St. Petersburg State University School of Journalism and Mass Communications in Business Journalism. She speaks Russian and English.

Монологи молодых жителей Приднестровья, получивших в наследство паспорта граждан непризнанной республики.

Yaroslava Kutsai, Ukraine: Ms. Kutsai has been focusing on social advocacy and identity issues, but more recently has gravitated towards environmental justice in the context of climate change. She started as a reporter for the Ukrainian TV station Kanal 5, then worked as a press officer for the National Ecological Centre of Ukraine and contributed feature stories for the Ukrainian edition of National Geographic. During the 2014 Ukrainian Revolution she cooperated with Iceland's national public service broadcaster and ran a column about propaganda on television for the Ukrainian magazine Week. For the last two years she has been based in Reykjavík, combining her studies with writing for Icelandic English language media as well as Ukrainian publications. She has a B.A. in Journalism from Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, an M.A. in Journalism from the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, and an M.A. from the Environment and Natural Resources program at the University of Iceland. She speaks Ukrainian, Russian, and English.

Slovenians are the first in the European Union to enshrine human right to water in their constitution.

2016 -2017 Jiri Dienstbier Journalism Fellows

Lidija Pisker, Bosnia and Hercegovina: Lidija Pisker is a freelance reporter and research professional focusing on human rights and anti-discrimination policies. Most recently, she was an advisor to the Technical Assistance for Civil Society Organization (TACSO) in Bosnia Herzegovina. Prior to her work with TACSO, Ms. Pisker was a research analyst at the International Research and Exchange Board (IREX) focusing on the conditions of media freedom in Bosnia-Herzegovina. She has also performed research studies for the UN and the Japan Foundation and has collaborated with web news magazines such as,, Kosovo 2.0., and Café Babel. Ms. Pisker holds a M.A. in Democracy and Human Rights from the University of Bologna and the University of Sarajevo, and a B.A. in Education from the University of Sarajevo. She has authored a number of policy studies on education and social inclusion for organizations such as the National Democratic Institute and the European Union. Ms. Pisker speaks native Bosnian, Serbian, and Croatian, as well as professional English and basic German and Italian.

Mirkica Popovikj, Macedonia: Ms. Popovikj has spent the majority of her reporting career working to bridge the gap between Macedonian and Greek societies. Most recently, she worked at the Macedonian media outlets Telma TV and META News Agency as a foreign correspondent from Athens focusing on issues such as foreign policy, politics, and economics. Prior to Telma TV and META , Ms. Popovikj worked as an Athens correspondent for one of the most prominent Macedonian daily newspapers, Utrinski vesnik, covering similar topics and reporting on a daily basis about Greek economic and social issues and political turmoil during the Greek financial crisis. Ms. Popovikj has a B.A. in Media and Communications and an MSc in International Marketing. In 2010 she coauthored the academic article, “Reality TV and the Reality of Television: How much reality is there in 'Reality TV'?” and was a U.S. State Department Fellow for the Macedonian Media Leaders Program in 2015. Ms. Popovikj speaks Macedonian, English, and Greek.

examines the issue of youth unemployment in Macedonia.