Finalist: National Book Award for Documentation (1999)
WHILE OFFICIALS and experts are still arguing about the real causes of what is now called the “Asian crisis,” one thing seems clear: There was lack of information that would have allowed officials, businesspeople and ordinary citizens to anticipate the crisis, understand its causes, and deal with its impacts.
How such paucity of information could exist in the so-called “Information Age” points to the contradictions in Southeast Asian societies. On one hand, the booming countries of the region had opened their economies to transnational capital flows, encouraged foreign investments and embarked on an ambitious path to growth based on integration into the global economy. On the other hand, in many of these countries, long reigning leaders have tried to keep their citizens on a tight leash, restricting freedom of expression and flows of information that they think would threaten their regimes.
Finalist: National Book Award for Journalism (1998)
MEDIA CORRUPTION is not an easy subject for jorunalistic investigation. In this unprecedented work, Chay Florentino-Hofileña looks at the history of media corruption in the Philippines, probes corrupt practices in the 1990s, and discovers how a free press can be bought.
This study shows that compared to the past, media corruption in the post-Marcos era is costlier, more pervasive, and even more systemic. It is also disturbingly sophisticated, and in some cases, even institutionalized. The organized way in which corruption takes place—through a network of jorunalists reporting to other journalists or to professional public relations or PR people—makes it seem almost like the operation of a criminal syndicate, a mafia of corrupt practitioners.
Winner: National Book Award for Journalism (1998)
CORRUPTION is an issues as old as governance itself. Filipinos therefore tend to be cynical about corruption in government. They are shocked that public officials are corrupt, although they may sometimes marvel at the magnitude of the thievery.
Yet more and more Filipinos are now raising issues about the effectiveness of government performance, the accountability of government institutions, and the transparency of government agencies. They have realized that democracy in itself does not ensue that government officials and institutions are immune to the corruption that plagued authoritarian regimes.
Finalist: National Book Award for Journalism (1997)
This easy-to-use reference book compiles information on the workings of key government institutions: the presidency, Congress, the courts, the police, the agencies that regulate the economy and the environment, and those that provide education and health services.
It describes the structure of these institutions and the laws that govern them. It explains how these agencies work and untangles the often arcane procedures taht govern their operation. Government is a maze, and Uncovering the Beat is a guide to that maze.
Finalist: National Book Award for Journalism (1997), out of print
THE DIGITAL revolution has had profound consequences on the way of doing journalism. Computers and modems have made it possible to transmit almost instantaneously large amounts of information from anywhere on the planet with a telephone. But more than that, the new technology has also made available to journalists a whole new world of research and reporting possibilities.
MARILEN Dañguilan has been a warrior in a war of liberation, and this book is a chronicle of that war—the war for women’s bodies, women’s rights, and women’s choices.
The stories that Marilen tells may bear familiar outlines, especially for those who followed the back-and-forth between Church and State around the time of the Cairo and the Beijing women’s conference. But her accounts of these skirmishes acquire an entertaining edge by the deft way she sketches characters, her sense of irony and the telling detail, and the way she builds up suspense as the fraying edges of public opinion threaten to rip apart the social fabric.
In this gripping autobiography, Ma. Rosa Henson recalls her childhood as the illegitimate daughter of a big landowner, her wartime ordeal and her decision to go public with a secret she had kept for fifty years.
Winner: National Book Award for Journalism (1996), out of print
IN 1995, the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) published the award-winning Boss: 5 Case Studies of Local Politics in the Philippines. In Patrimony, some of the country’s best investigative reporters focus their investigative skills on the link between local politics and the environment, examining how democratization and devolution have affected the way resources are managed at the local level. Patrimony looks at the structures of local power and explains how those who hold local office use their power to exploit, or in some cases protect, natural resources.
Winner: National Book Award for Journalism (1995), out of print
FOR THE last hundred years, politicians have died, and killed, for the perks of local office—including control of substantial revenues, as well as cuts from pork barrel funds, government contracts, even jueteng and smuggling operations.
In 1991, Congress passed the Local Government Code which devolved power to local government units. The Code shifts the locus of power from manila to the regions. For the first time in Philippine history, local governments now have the authority and potentially, also the resources, to become independent power centers.
In the 15 years since its founding, the PCIJ, has published more than a dozen books and produced several full-length documentaries, many of which have won major awards and citations, including five National Book Awards and a Catholic Mass Media Award.
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