Documentary and Diversity - Training and Research for Culturally and Socially Viable Media Production

Photo by Russell Grant.
Students shooting the documentary film "Poison of Choice" on location in Soweto, South Africa

Coordinator Arcada University of Applied Sciences
Contact details

Jan Nåls, jan.nals(at)

Lars Lundsten, lars.lundsten(at)

Budget €300 000
Duration 6/2014 - 12/2015
Academic field Communication and Media studies
Funding since 2005


South African School of Motion Picture Medium and Live Performance, South Africa

University of Johannesburg, South Africa

University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

National Film and Television Institute, Ghana

Swedish School of Social Sciences at the University of Helsinki, Finland

Brief Description:

The name of this network “Documentary and Diversity – Collaborative Training and Research for Culturally and Socially Viable Media Production” (”Documentary and Diversity” or ”D&D”, below) shows that the main aim with this Programme is to train a cohort of culturally and socially sensitive future media professionals. The Network annually invites 15–30 film and television students from at least three countries and at least six Higher Education Institutions to take part in a documentary film training programme, during which the students are required to make documentary films in culturally diverse groups and for culturally diverse audiences.

The main objectives of the D&D Network are on three main dimensions:
(i) improvement of professional media education in the partner countries;
(ii) the improvement of the access to media production by previously disadvantaged parts of the population particularly in South Africa and Ghana, but also in Finland;
(iii) various direct long term and short term societal impact as a result of the media products created by the participants.

The duration of the main student exchange is 6 months, with shorter staff exchanges during this period. The network holds an annual intensive course as well as a doctoral school, where staff and students from partner institutions can develop their academic skills and get support in pursuing their PhD.

Funded Activities
Number of Teacher Exchanges: 12
Number of Student Exchanges: 18
Number of Administrative Visits and Network Meetings: 2
Number of Intensive Courses: 1

Brief Description of the Intensive Course(s):

Topic and theme: Storytelling and social change - the challenge of empowerment
Location: Accra, Ghana
Number of participants: 30
Teaching methods: Film workshops, Lectures, Seminar

Brief Description of Possible Dissemination Measures:

Presentation of network and its productions at the ZIFF Film Festival in Zanzibar 2015. The target group is film professionals in Africa who will get to know the network and its output.