12th annual AIBs reward factual programme makers from across the world

The 12th annual awards for factual television, radio and online productions – known as the AIBs – were awarded at a glittering gala dinner in London on Wednesday 2 November hosted by Mark Barton, anchor on Bloomberg Television. Sponsors of the AIBs 2016 include global satellite communications company Eutelsat and broadcast consultants MediaGuru.

abdul-rahman-ramadhanAs well as rewarding programme makers, the Association for International Broadcasting presented its Founders Award to Abdul Rahman Ramadhan (right) who for more than 35 years has been an unsung hero of news and documentary-making in Africa. He is “The Sound Man” who, working for Camerapix alongside the late legendary photojournalist Mohamed Amin, captured the sounds of war, famine and genocide across Africa. Abdul was the sound recordist who worked with the BBC’s Michael Buerk, who brought news of the Ethiopian famine into homes around the world. This led to the creation of Band Aid and the global Live Aid pop concert. “We are delighted to have the opportunity to recognise the work of Abdul Rahman Ramadhan,” said Alexey Nikolov, Managing Director of RT and Chairman of the AIB’s Executive Committee. “He has worked tirelessly in the most challenging of situations to bring the sounds that illustrate the news to viewers across the world. He has put his life in danger on many occasions and yet shows no sign of hanging up his headphones. Abdul is a worthy recipient of the important AIB Founders Award.”

Alongside the presentation of the Founders Award, the global panel of judges of this year’s AIBs rewarded programme makers in 14 countries, ranging in size from an Argentinian radio station to major TV networks such as the BBC.

Key themes among the entries were the migrant crisis in Europe and in particular the effects on children. There were also a range of productions covering issues around so-called ISIS, including the radicalisation of youth in western European countries. The judges praised the work of nominees, describing productions variously as “bold”, “engaging”, “compelling” and “comprehensive”.

The Association’s Innovation award was presented to the Private Engineering Office of Qatar for its ground-breaking TV and film archiving project that is preserving Qatar’s audio-visual archives on a scale unmatched anywhere in the world.

“We had the largest crop of entries in the 12-year history of the AIBs,” commented Simon Spanswick, chief executive of the Association for International Broadcasting. “Work from broadcasters and production companies on every continent was considered by our shortlisting team. Then our experts in the international jury evaluated which work was the best of the best. Some of the decisions were immensely close as the programmes we saw and heard in the shortlist were all of the very highest standard.”

With results in 17 categories ranging from news journalism to children’s factual, sport to investigate documentary, the AIBs cover the entire range of factual TV, radio and online production genres. There is an overall winner in each category and there are also special commendations that the judges said represented excellent work.

The list of winners appears below.

The AIBs open for entry again in April 2017.

Winners list

TELEVISION JOURNALISM – sponsored by MediaGuru

Winner – The Children of War – BBC News

Highly commended – Desperate Journey – PBS NewsHour

Highly commended – Paris Terror Attacks – CNN


Winner – Burmese Election Special – BBC Burmese


Winner – My Son the Jihadi – True Vision Productions for Channel 4

Highly commended – My Jihad – VRT

Highly commended – Chemsex – Vice


Winner – ISIS: Young, British and Radicalised – Snappin’ Turtle Productions for BBC Radio 1

Highly commended – Corruption K: Cristina in the Dock – Radio Mitre

Highly commended – Alvin Hall Goes Back to School – WNYC & Public Radio International


Winner – On Assignment – Vicky’s Story – ITV News and MediaZones

Highly commended – Right to Fight – The Guardian

Highly commended – Winners – BBC World Service


Winner – It Ends with Murder – The Body in the Freezer – Danish Broadcasting

Highly commended – The Sound Man – Africa24 and Camerapix

Highly commended – The Special Needs Hotel – Lambent Productions


Winner – Documentary on One: The Case That Never Was – RTÉ Radio 1

Highly commended – The Unfinished Story of Fighting FGM in Egypt – BBC Arabic

Highly commended File on 4 – Tennis – Game Set and Fix? – BBC/Buzzfeed


Winner – 6×9: A virtual experience of solitary confinement – The Guardian

Highly commended – Back in Touch – On Our Radar in partnership with New Internationalist

Highly commended –   China’s Science Revolution – BBC News


Winner – Iceman Reborn – Nova – WGBH

Highly commended – Secrets of the Brain – TERN International


Qatar Private Engineering Office for the Old Films Archive Project


Abdul Rahman Ramadhan


Winner – Checker Tobi – Bayerischer Rundfunk

Highly commended – Know Zone – The Mediae Company


Winner – Formula 1 – Whisper Films and Channel 4

Highly commended – Rugby World Cup Final – ITV Sport


Winner – The Battle of Britain at 75 – TBI Media with Snappin’ Turtle Productions for BBC Radio 2

Highly commended – Growing Up Without a Dad – BlokMedia


Winner – Brussels Divided: Molenbeek after the Terrorist Attacks – The Guardian

Highly commended – Syria: Witness to an Airstrike – CNN Worldwide

Highly commended – VTM News – Train of Hope – Medialaan


Winner – ISIS: The British Women Supporters Unveiled – Channel 4

Highly commended – 101 East: Murder in Malaysia – Al Jazeera English

Highly commended – Spotlight – Selling Northern Ireland – BBC Northern Ireland


Winner – Children on the Frontline: The Escape – Channel 4

Highly commended – Kaos Hatti – Kos Island – TRT

Highly commended – We Love Gaza – RT


Viny Agrawal – MyFM 94.3, Indore, India


Hala Gorani – CNN International



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