Increasing Media Freedom in Afghanistan

Improving Media Freedom with Data

Violence against journalists in Afghanistan seriously limits media freedom in the country, affecting the work of civil society organizations (CSOs) and reducing the efficiency of development efforts in the country. The scale and frequency of the violence can be hard to grasp, but Nai’s MediaWatch team, in partnership with Internews, is collecting and aggregating hundreds of detailed reports throughout the country. To help make sense of this data and tell the story of what is happening on the ground we mapped the data.

Visualizing the Violence

The launch of opens all of this data to the public and visualizes it on an interactive map for the first time, enabling a broad set of actors, from CSOs to citizen journalists, to easily engage with the data.

A look at
The main landing page of shows an aggregate look at violent incidents against journalists.

The site makes Nai’s data truly accessible, allowing visitors to quickly visualize aggregate trends over the past ten years and dive into specific years to see details on hundreds of incidents.

Interacting with the Data

All data is geotagged at the province level on the map. The size of the point represents the number of reported incidents.

Fast, interactive maps

Mousing over any point shows the historical trend for that province. To add context to the incidents the site allows visitors to view additional maps along with the incidents. These maps include the number of journalists and media organizations operating in a province, security incidents in a given province, and a safety index provided by Nai.

A Safer Future

With this site, we intend to raise the profile of this issue and allow media, civil society, and government to understand its breadth and trends. Furthermore, by allowing other CSOs and the public to interact with Nai’s data we hope to set a tone of collaboration, networking, and data sharing among Afghanistan’s CSOs, media sector, and civil society at large. Ideally all organizations, even those not currently focused on media, will understand and support media freedom.

Sediqullah Tawhidi, the Head of Nai's Media Watch
Sediqullah Tawhidi, the Head of Nai’s Media Watch, announces the opening of data on violence against journalists in Kabul, Afghanistan.

This work is one part of a much larger effort to improve media freedom. Nai and Internews are also funding and implementing other projects designed to support and train local journalists.

We're a team of engineers and designers working on big projects. We believe in open source and in building for lasting impact.

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