November 7th, 2010 - 18:49 UTC
by Andy Sennitt.
Deutsche Welle (DW) is facing far-reaching reforms. “Technological innovations, particularly through the Internet, and great financial pressure make changes necessary,” said director Erik Bettermann. The international broadcaster plans to adopt a new structure which will also reduce the number of employees by 2014. According to Mr Bettermann, the number of affected jobs will “lie in the triple digits.”
The DW directors last week held a meeting which agreed on key issues for the reform plan. A working group of directors will, over the coming months, develop proposals on how the plan can best be implemented. The plan envisages that radio broadcasting on shortwave will in future be maintained only for Africa. In other regions of the world, DW content will increasingly be put on the Internet and local partner stations. DW’s presence in Latin America and Russia should be increased. However, Southeastern Europe is not among the core regions.
The 30 languages currently broadcast by Deutsche Welle will be maintained, but the present division of tasks according to media types is expected to be phased out. The editors will in future produce content for television, radio and online through a trimedial process.
DW has calculated that it will be required to operate with a smaller budget for the next few years. “We are not exempt from the economies being made by the federal government,” said the director. Even if DW’s budget could be kept at the current level of 273 million euros per year, by 2014 this would effectively mean a decrease of 23 million euros due to rising costs and inflation.
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