IRMI Team

The Institute for Regional Media and Information (IRMI) is an international non-state organisation. It was founded by Ukrainian and international media and public communication experts that for many years had been cooperating within educational programmes in Ukraine. 

IRMI Founders

Angelina Soldatenko (Ukraine)
Executive Director

Angelina is a journalist. Since 1990 she has been working extensively as a media and public communication expert and trainer. Angelina has been involved in educational programmes of the Council of Europe, UNESCO and the European Journalism Centre. She has designed, edited and published research projects. Angelina is a member of international journalism and training organisations. 

Taras Boikovych (Ukraine)

Taras is a lawyer, specializing in administrative law, business law, civil law and media law.

Oleksiy Soldatenko (Ukraine)
Programs Director

Oleksiy is a professional in Public Relations and Media Relations. A trainer and training organizer with more than 20 years experience, working with his organizations on the training programs in cooperation with or sponsored by UNESCO, Council of Europe, MATRA, British Embassy, European Journalism Centre amongst others. 
Oleksiy used to be facilitator in the international Intercultural projects of the British Council. Within the project he has trained intercultural navigators and active citizens from all over Ukraine, and worked as a facilitator in the international Navigators delivery teams.
Author and facilitator of study visits training programs for Ukrainian PR specialists, journalists and MPs to UK, USA, The Netherlands and Belgium. 
He is also co-author of the book “Profession: Journalist”. 

Gie Meeuwis (Belgium)

Gie is a lecturer in television journalism and cross medial reporting at the Fontys university of applied sciences in Tilburg the Netherlands. He has over thirty years of experience in foreign reporting in Eastern and Western Europe, Africa and Latin America. He is also an expert in cultural diversity and crisis reporting.

Mogens Schmidt (Denmark)
Head of the Board

Mogens has been working with UNESCO for more than 10 years as Director of Freedom of Expression, Democracy and Peace, Deputy Assistant Director General for Communication and Information and as Director of Global Field Operations and Conflict and Disaster Assistance. Over the last 25 years he has held senior management posts at the World Association of Newspapers, the European Journalism Centre and the Danish School of Journalism. He is a specialist on freedom of expression, media development and journalism education.

David van der Houwen (the Netherlands)

For many years David was involved in projects, seminars and trainings for journalists and public information-officers in Central- and Eastern Europe, especially the CIS-countries, with a focus on Ukraine. He is co-author of a handbook on public information in Central and Eastern European Countries. He also worked as a part time lecturer at the Academy for Journalism in Tilburg (The Netherlands). Nowadays David is policy officer for international affairs with the 50PLUS political party in The Netherlands and chairman of the international organisation connected with this party.

Barbara Thomass

Barbara is Professor for International Comparison of Media Systems at the Ruhr-University of Bochum, Germany. Her main fields of research are media systems in East and West, media politics, public service media, international communication, media development, media and journalism ethics. She is the second deputy head of the administrative council of the ZDF, the national public service broadcaster in Germany. Prior to her academic career she had been working as a journalist.

Richard Linning

A professional communicator for more years than he cares to admit, Richard Linning’s career has taken him to every continent, as journalist, marketing consultant, lobbyist in London and Brussels for companies and countries, issue advocate and educator. Most recently he developed a communication strategy for the roll-out of the reform of the civil administration in Greece. Prior to that he completed a public diplomacy and outreach assignment for the European Union in Vietnam. His experience also includes anti-corruption communication strategy (Romania), pre EU accession and structural fund (SE Europe) and as a public affairs  officer for Hong Kong in London. As President of the International Public Relations Association he led the restructuring of IPRA to better reflect and link the language and cultural diversity of global practitioners. He is also a Past President of Confederation Europennee des Relations Publique. Richard was made an Honorary Fellow of the Senate of the University of Bucharest in recognition of his promotion of the free flow of information as a key component of the development of a democratic society.  While Scholar-in-Residence at the Center for Global Public Relations, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Richard contributed as conference speaker, lecturer, mentor and author of articles on ethical and other public relations practice issues.