Meet the Fellowship Team

Editors and journalists from across the region and beyond all work together to make the Balkan fellowship a truly international experience. Scroll down this page for more information on our editorial team.

The Fellowship Team

Gordana Igric

Gordana Igric is the director and editor-in-chief of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, which has a major role in the running of the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.

An award-winning Serbian journalist, Igrić is well known for her outstanding reporting and human rights research during the wars in Bosnia and Kosovo. Having run the Balkan programme of the Institute of War and Peace Reporting, IWPR, until 2005 before founding BIRN, she is also an experienced journalism trainer and media development specialist.


Dragana Zarkovic Obradovic

Dragana Zarkovic Obradovic is BIRN’s Serbia manager and coordinator of training activities throughout the BIRN regional network.

She has been programme manager of the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence since 2008. Previously, she ran media projects for prominent international organisations, such as the Stability Pact for Southeast Europe, Transparency International and the European Agency for Reconstruction.

She has also worked for several electronic media, including Radio Free Europe in Prague, the Belgrade television station Studio B, and the independent production group Mreza.

Milos Milosavljevic

Milos Milosavljevic is an information systems designer and digital media strategist. He was previously the English web site editor and web project manager at B92.net, one of the leading web portals in South East Europe and a media analyst at the OSCE Mission to Serbia.

Milos also regularly consults media and busninesses in the Balkan region on how to align their design, content, visibility and marketing campaigns online with their business goals and is an external consultat for Weevify, an emerging web development platform.

Besar Likmeta

Besar Likmeta is the BIRN Albania editor. Since 2003 he has worked as a professional journalist for various print publications, electronic media and television.

He started his career reporting for the Florida Times Union in Jacksonville, Florida. He moved to Albania in 2005 where he has been a features editor for the Tirana Times, a world news editor for 24 hour news channel TV Ora News.

He has also contributed stories to various publications such as Jane's Intelligence Review, Businessweek and World Politics Review.

Albena Shkodrova

Albena Shkodrova in 2006 established the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, in Bulgaria, after being the country director of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, IWPR, for a year.

She has been a journalist since 1991, writing for various Bulgarian media, notably for Sofia-based print-editions, Standard, 24 chasa, Dnevnik and Tema.

In 2004 she also worked as a correspondent for Radio Liberty. From 2001 to 2003, she was in the diplomatic service at the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where she was Head of the Information Policy and the Public Relations Department.

Currently, Albena is editor of the Balkan Travellers web portal, and editor of Bacchus, Bulgaria's leading wine, food, culture and eno-tourism magazine, published by Economedia.

Jeta Xharra

Jeta Xharra is the Director of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Kosovo, as well as the leading anchor and editor of “Life in Kosovo”, the leading current affairs programme broadcast in prime-time on Kosovo’s public TV, RTK.

She got into journalism working as a fixer/local producer for BBC News and Channel 4 in 1998 and later became manager of the BBC Kosovo Bureau.

In 1999, she worked for BBC News in Albania and Macedonia and in 2003 she opened the office for Institute for War and Peace Reporting in Kosovo.

Xharra has published a front-page article in the Independent and written for the Economist, Sunday Telegraph and Jane’s Intelligence Review.

While in the UK, Xharra worked for the Foreign News Planning Desk at the BBC World Service, Institute for War and Peace Reporting and in 2005 she established the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Kosovo.

Nedjeljko Rudovic

Nedjeljko Rudovic is editor at the Montenegrin daily newspaper Vijesti, where he has worked since 1997.

His fields of expertise are domestic political affairs and issues relating to the European Union.

He is also Editor-in-Chief of Evropski Reporter and a correspondent for the Belgrade-based weekly Vreme and VIP news agency.

He has been a regular contributor to IWPR's Balkan Crisis Reports and, since February 2005, to Balkan Insight.

Marian Chiriac

Marian Chiriac has worked as a journalist since 1990, mainly covering politics and human rights issues.

He has reported extensively on most major events in Romania and the Balkan area, and taught diversity reporting to journalism students at Bucharest University.

Marian became a regular contributor for the Institute for War and Peace Reporting in 1999, and in 2005 established BIRN Romania. Marian is the winner of the Net Media Awards 2003 - Best News Story Broken on the web.

Andrew Gray

Andrew has been a journalist for two decades. He spent 15 years at Reuters, including assignments as a war reporter, Pentagon correspondent and bureau chief for the Balkans. He holds a master's degree in investigative journalism and has completed a Thomson Reuters Foundation course in journalism training.

About

About Us

In order to foster quality reporting, initiate regional networking among journalists and advance balanced coverage on topics that are central to the region as well as to the EU, the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence programme  is supported by the ERSTE Foundation and the Open Society Foundations, in cooperation with the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN.

What is the Fellowship?

Journalists from the Balkans are increasingly required to cover complex reform issues, taking in a regional and Europe-wide dimension. The fellowship provides editorial guidance, training and adequate funding to do so.

Our Partners

Prominent German, Austrian and Swiss newspapers, Die Süddeutsche Zeitung, Der Standard and Neue Zürcher Zeitung are media partners of the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence programme. Besides being involved in the selection committee, they participate in seminars, support fellows if needed and seek to republish the best articles produced by them.

Contact Us

Please contact us for any additional information about the programme, or if you have suggestions, remarks or complaints about the web site and its content

Selection Committee

The Selection Committee is comprised of seven prominent media figures from the Balkans and Europe. Each year, committee members read, evaluate and select story proposals for the fellowship.

Fellowship Team

Editors and journalists from across the region and beyond all work together to make the Balkan fellowship a truly international experience. Scroll down this page for more information on our editorial team.