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CSIR empowers Journalists’ capacity to improve reportage on science-related issues

By Florence Afriyie Mensah, GNA

Fumesua (Ash), June 18, GNA – A day’s capacity-building training workshop to equip journalists in the Ashanti Region with the requisite expertise in reporting accurately on agriculture, science and technology-related information, had been held at Fumesua in the Ashanti Region.

The workshop, organized by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, as part of its agenda to deepen relationships with the media, exposed the participants to some of the terminologies used by scientists and researchers.

They were also taught the core functions and roles of the various institutions under the Council within the scheme of Ghana’s development.

Dr. Edward Yeboah, Acting Director of the CSIR-Soil Research Institute (SRI), said the media was an effective channel for the dissemination of innovative research outputs to stakeholders.

“Traditionally, research has relied on newspapers, magazines, radio and television to engage stakeholders,” he explained.

The Acting Director observed that in recent times social media platforms had gained much prominence, but the traditional media still play critical roles in information broadcasting.

Analysis of the communications channels of CSIR, he said, showed a good number of the officers responsible for the dissemination of information play around with scientific information.

Dr. Yeboah said if journalists were not trained in deciphering scientific, agriculture and technological related information they would have challenges in disseminating the right information across the media channels.

Issues discussed at the programme included adopting appropriate communication and publicity actions to create awareness on the numerous technologies and innovations developed and promoted by the CSIR.

Established in 1958 as the National Research Council, the CSIR has transformed over the course of six decades to its present status, comprising 13 research institutes.

Collectively, the Council has over 60 field stations, research centres and establishments across the length and breadth of the country.

It has chalked successes in coming up with technologies in crop and animal production, agro-processing and value addition, building and road construction, environmental management and industrial manufacturing.

In the area of food security, for example, over 70 per cent of farmers in the country are using improved varieties of maize, rice, groundnut, soybean, yam, cassava and millet developed by the CSIR.

The training workshop discussed topics, including adopting appropriate communication and publicity actions to create awareness on the numerous technologies and innovations developed and promoted by the Council.

Ms. Benedicta Nkrumah-Boateng, Head of Corporate Affairs, CSIR, said the Council was strengthening its relations with the media to help deliver quality services to the public.