Donation from our former Director kicks off fund for journalists under pressure

David A. L. Levy is sponsoring a new fellowship this year
David A. Levy (right) with a few Journalist Fellows. / JULIA MASSEY STEWART

David A. Levy (right) with a few Journalist Fellows. / JULIA MASSEY STEWART

28th October 2019

David A. L. Levy, Senior Research Associate and former Director of the Reuters Institute, is sponsoring a fellowship for a journalist who will carry out research on the media coverage of a conflict between two cultures, regions or nation states.

Journalist Fellow Maryana Drach.

Journalist Fellow Maryana Drach. 

The new Journalist Fellow

For this academic year, the fellowship funded by Dr. Levy’s donation has been awarded to Maryana Drach, the Director of RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service. Drach oversaw the service’s award-winning coverage of the country’s 2013-2014 Maidan demonstrations and the conflicts in Russian-annexed Crimea and Eastern Ukraine. She has an undergraduate degree in international studies from Roosevelt University (Chicago) and a graduate degree in Public Administration from the Institute of Public Administration and Local Government in Ukraine. Her research topic during her time in Oxford will be how social media has shaped public discourse during elections in Ukraine. 

David Levy, Senior Research Fellow and former Director of the Reuters Institute, said: “Much of what I learned about journalism in the course of my 10 years as Director is due to the over 200 journalist fellows who came to the Institute and their passion for journalism and truth telling never failed to move me. I was especially impressed and humbled by those from places where being a journalist requires extraordinary levels of personal courage and  self-sacrifice. In creating this fellowship I wanted to mark my admiration for so many past fellows while creating an opportunity for another from a conflict area to come Oxford and to return refreshed and inspired by the experience and exchange of the fellowship programme. I also hope this individual donation motivates many more to follow suit.”

A new fund 

Dr. Levy’s donation is announced as the Reuters Institute is creating a dedicated fund for mobilizing support for journalists operating under pressure to come and join us as Journalist Fellows. We aim to raise £180,000 over three years to be able to offer at least two 6-month fellowships every year to journalists operating in adverse conditions. Eligible journalists must meet the criteria for our fellowship programme, so they are practicing working journalists with a track record of exceptional professional success, who will contribute to and benefit from the community of journalists at the Institute. 

The fund aims to help journalists who work under considerable pressure and need the opportunity to form new networks, refresh their knowledge and take time away from their jobs, but are in a position to leave the UK and return to journalism once the fellowship is complete. The goal of the fellowship is to support the journalist, and raise awareness of the topic both within the Institute and globally. 

If you or your organisation would like to make a donation of any size to the fund, please contact Kate Hanneford-Smith, Head of Administration,