The Mediancampus Villa Ida - the domicile of the ECPMF. Source: Media Foundation of Sparkasse Leipzig.
Leipzig managed to satisfy the search for a suitable location for the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom. This city in the heart of Europe has always been a bridge between Eastern and Western Europe and excels in university tradition and infrastructure. Leipzig was the centre of the Peaceful Revolution in East Germany, which played a major role in bringing down the Berlin Wall. In 1989 hundreds of thousands of people protested in the streets (our picture on the right shows citizens demanding freedom of speech). They defied state authority, demanding freedom of expression and freedom of the press. 25 years after the Peaceful Revolution in East Germany the State of Saxony as well as the City of Leipzig support the ECMPF.
A key demand in 1989: Tens of thousands of people protest for press freedom in the streets of Leipzig. Source: Archiv Bürgerbewegung Leipzig e.V.
Also, the work of the Media Foundation of the Sparkasse Leipzig has been dedicated to Freedom of Expression and Media Freedom for 13 years. The Media Foundation has joined the initiative of ECPMF as the project developer. Since its formation in 2001 the Foundation has supported critical journalism and freedom of the press. It has been actively engaged in journalism research and education: The European Institute for Journalism and Communication Research (EIJC) is located in the Foundation’s building and the Foundation runs the Leipzig School of Media. Here academics and institutions from Austria, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom co-operate.
Moreover, for 13 years the foundation has been awarding the international “Prize for the Freedom and the Future of the Media”. Among others The Guardian, Glenn Greenwald, Fabrizio Gatti, Oleg Kashin, Alan Johnston, Gideon Levy, La Voz de Galizia, Anna Politkovskaya and Seymour Hersh have all been awarded this prize.