Upgrades at Pajhwok Afghan News


After surviving its first five years, Pajhwok Afghan News was in need of a makeover.

I designed, obtained $1.1 million in funding for and managed three projects which addressed four key areas: 1) In-depth and issues-oriented coverage; 2) photography and video; 3) parliamentary elections and national governance coverage; 4) a redesigned tri-lingual website with online subscription sales.

  • To improve the quality of coverage, we conducted in-house learning sessions, and then mentored reporters and editors as they developed issues and investigative stories.
  • For multimedia, we started a video department, added audio clips to the text-based service, and upgraded the equipment and skills of still photographers.
  • Before, during and after the parliamentary elections, we brought together a team of reporters and interns to do biographies and coverage on the actions of the sitting parliament and candidates.
  • And throughout these activities, we designed, built, launched and continually developed the new Pajhwok website.

For these upgrade projects, I was the project manager, working partly in-country and mostly long-distance with my Afghan counterpart, and ensured that we exceeded project objectives while working well within the budget.