Each month, IJNet features an international journalist who exemplifies the profession and has used the site to further his or her career. If you would like to be featured, email a short bio and a paragraph about how you have used IJNet here.
This month's journalist is Pradipta Mukherjee, who is based in Kolkata, India. She writes for Bloomberg News, covering business, the economy and industry in the Indian state of West Bengal. She has written for the Business Standard and The Telegraph newspapers.
How has IJNet helped you?
Thanks to IJNet, I came across the Jefferson Fellowship, and [I became] a Jefferson Fellow from India for the 2012 program, where I also won the Mary Morgan Hewett Award for women in journalism. The program, which was held in June, had me flying to Hawaii, Singapore, China and South Korea, and included the special opportunity to participate at East-West Center’s Third International Media Conference. I also had the wonderful opportunity to be a speaker at East-West Center’s first South Asia Journalists’ Dialogue program in South Korea.
Moreover, through IJNet, I came across training opportunities at the Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism and have earned a certificate from the organization. I also earned a certificate from Google for a course I completed in July 2012.
How do you get your ideas for stories?
I gather and store information on all the sectors I cover. As a result, it is easy for me to identify trends and developments in those sectors, or in companies operating in those sectors.
What has been your best story or work so far?
I have a feeling that all my stories are worthwhile; otherwise my editors wouldn’t have published them! However, if I have to choose, I think it would be the April 2011 coverage of the widespread disillusionment with 34 years of Communist Party rule in West Bengal. I went on a field trip covering 600 km through several districts to gather information. Everybody I met at various locations said that they wanted change. In the next couple of weeks, this historic transition happened when general elections were held. This ended the 34-year rule of the world's longest-serving elected Marxist government.
What advice would you give aspiring journalists?
Keep yourself as well-informed as you can through all types of media on the sectors you are covering. If you are well-informed, stories and story ideas will fall naturally into your lap.
Photo provided by Pradipta Mukherjee