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Der Standard Editor Touts the Power of Print

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Der Standard Editor Touts the Power of Print


While the World Editors Forum is focusing much of its attention on digital innovations, its annual conference in Vienna in October does not neglect the successful editorial strategies designed specifically for what remains the heart of all newspapers – print.

It is fitting that this year’s Editors Forum is taking place in Austria, where the dynamic publishing market has done well compared to other hard-hit Western countries.

Alexandra Föderl-Schmid, Editor-in-Chief of the Austrian daily Der Standard, has joined the programme of the WEF, to be held alongside the World Newspaper Congress and Info Services Expo in Vienna from 12 to 15 October next. Ms Föderl-Schmid will participate in a session on "What content should print newspapers focus on to survive and thrive?"

"The function of daily newspapers has changed because the ways of sharing breaking news have multiplied," says Ms Föderl-Schmid. "As a consequence, printed newspapers have become more important as a medium for explaining the news: background, analysis, critique and artwork are becoming more and more crucial. It’s the news behind the news."

Der Standard has introduced "Main Focus Editions", a successful strategy exclusively for print in which one theme is used throughout the paper and all sections feature articles about it. "The advantage compared to a supplement is that readers are carried through the whole paper and keep encountering articles relating to the same central theme," says Ms. Föderl-Schmid.

"From readers’ reactions we know that this new form of journalism, which consciously prioritises a central focus, is well received," she says. "The central themes come from anniversaries, from incidents arising from current events like the Schengen borders being opened, or the World Climate Summit, or from timeless themes like happiness or food production."

The full interview with Ms. Föderl-Schmid can be found at

More than 1,200 chief editors, publishers, managing directors, CEOs and other senior newspaper executives are expected at the Editors Forum, Congress and Info Services Expo 2011, the annual global summit meetings of the world's press. For the evolving programme, registration and other information, please consult

Other WEF sessions include:

- After WikiLeaks: the next step for newspapers, featuring Mathias Müller von Blumencron, Editor-in-chief of Der Spiegel, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, founder of OpenLeaks, and other speakers to be announced.

- How to build a community around your newspaper, an examination of how newspapers are using social media featuring Jim Brady, Head of Project Thunderdome at the Journal Register Company in the United States, Matthew Eltringham, Editor of the BBC College of Journalism website in the UK, and  Anette Novak, Editor-in-Chief of Norran, Sweden.

Paywalls, from the newsroom perspective, which will include Jim Roberts, Assistant Managing Editor at The New York Times, Matúš Kostolný, Editor-in-Chief of SME in Slovakia, and other speakers to be announced.

- Rethinking newsroom integration: the latest experiments in a multi-platform age, a debate between pro-integration and pro-separate newsrooms featuring John Hillkirk, Editor of USA TODAY and Christian Ortner, Editor-in-Chief of Vorarlberger Nachrichten in Austria.

- The steps towards a successful tablet application, with Mario Garcia, CEO and Founder of Garcia Media, Peter Hossli, Editor-in-Chief of the Collection from Ringier, and other speakers to be announced.

- Looking beyond the article, a session dedicated to new storytelling techniques and featuring Scott Klein, Editor of News Applications at ProPublica, Bill Adair, Founder and Editor of Politifact, Justin Peters, Managing Editor of the Columbia Journalism Review online, and Marcelo Rech, Director General for Product at RBS in Brazil.

 -  What content should print newspapers focus on to survive and thrive?, followed by a session on how editorial initiatives can contribute to print success. Speakers include Föderl-Schmid, Simon Kelner, Editor-in-chief of the UK’s The Independent, Shyam Parekh, Editor of DNA in India, and Tom Kent, Standards Editor and Deputy Managing Editor at The Associated Press.

- Plus much more, including special sessions focused on the Arab Spring, ethics and quality journalism in the wake of the UK phone hacking scandal, the Innovations in Newspapers World Report, and the annual World Press Trends report.

The events, organised by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and hosted by the Austrian Newspaper Association (VÖZ), will be accompanied by a rich social programme, tours, meetings with local and international political, business and cultural leaders, and more.

The evolving conference programmes and other details can be found at

The World Editors Forum is the organisation of WAN-IFRA that represents editors-in-chief and other senior news executives. WAN-IFRA, based in Paris, France, and Darmstadt, Germany, with subsidiaries in Singapore, India, Spain, France and Sweden, is the global organisation of the world’s newspapers and news publishers. It represents more than 18,000 publications, 15,000 online sites and over 3,000 companies in more than 120 countries. Its core mission is to defend and promote press freedom, quality journalism and editorial integrity and the development of prosperous businesses.

Inquiries to: Larry Kilman, Director of Communications and Public Affairs, WAN-IFRA, 7 rue Geoffroy St Hilaire, 75005 Paris France. Tel: +33 1 47 42 85 00. Fax: +33 1 47 42 49 48. Mobile: +33 6 10 28 97 36. E-mail:

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