Nana Boakye Yiadom was the next speaker to give a talk on Re-Think in Media,Arts and Entertainment at the TEDxAccra Masterclass. He is an international award-winning journalist working with one Ghana’s most influential media houses Citi FM. He also works with some of the world’s respected media houses such as the New York Times and Radio France International. His message was hinged on “Rethinking Media”. He is also the founder of Ijourno Africa, an organization that seeks to unearth and nurture Africa’s Next generation of data ready journalists.
He spoke about how he grew up in one of the most deprived suburbs of James Town in Accra. He recounted how he was good at playing football and thought one day he’d become an Abedi Pele. When his dad asked him one day what he wanted to be, he was afraid to say he wanted to be a footballer so he said he wanted to be a journalist. At that time, he had the impression that, journalists only come on Radio or TV, present the news and go so being a journalist wouldn’t be a bad idea.
He had his first shot at journalism at Radio Universe while he was schooling at University of Ghana, Legon. At Radio, Universe journalism was evolving from an era where journalists just come and present the news and leave to an era of text messaging where listeners could send messages and get involved. He later moved to Citi FM, where he did a number of features and documentaries. One of those documentaries won him an African Story Challenge Award. This feat he chalked exposed him to a lot of things happening in the media landscape across the globe and one of them was Data Journalism.
He revealed that there are a lot of things to be done with data which people haven’t tapped into and Data Journalism is the way forward. He made inquiries in some journalism schools about their knowledge of Data Journalism and found out that, most people did not know what it entailed. In order to avoid producing obsolete journalists in the future, he came up with the idea of forming an organization called iJourno Africa to solve this problem. Their aim is to train and equip journalism students with the requisite tools to enable them to use data to tell developmental stories. At the end of one of their training, students were able to use infographics an aspect of data journalism to tell stories. Their target is to be able to train 1000 young data journalists by the end of 2017.
Below are some infographic works by Nana Boakye’s iJournos.