Donald Borenstein


Astoria, NY

Donald Borenstein

Multimedia journalist with experience in covering environmental policy, public & maternal health, critical review, and on-site reporting. With experience as a videographer, along with my audio and video production skills, I can be the one-person multimedia team your publication needs.


Challenging Patriarchy: The Changing Definition of Women’s Empowerment

Recently named the 6th best post in the history of New Security Beat, as part of the 20th anniversary celebration of the Environmental Change and Security Program at the Wilson Center: Baldwin applauded Basu’s message about expanding the traditional approach to empowerment, urging organizations to “unpack the concepts” behind their goals to determine what they define as successful empowerment. The idea of women’s empowerment is not clearly defined. For example, organizations should ask themselves when they start employment initiatives whether they are addressing working in the house or out of the house, in the formal sector or the informal sector, Baldwin said. “What is it about having that job or that income that makes a difference when [women] come home?” For organizations making these decisions, “it would be extra helpful to actually understand how these concepts knit together so that you would have half a chance that pushing on this part of the concept is actually going to give you the effect at the other end that you want,” she said.
New Security Beat Link to Story

Bouncing Forward: Why “Resilience” Is Important and Needs a Definition

As policymakers respond to the threat of climate and environmental change, the concept of resilience has found itself at the center of discussion. Few scientists and policymakers, however, can come to a consensus on how to define, evaluate, and build resilience. The concept is sometimes defined as “the ability to bounce back.”. Featured on the front page of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars website.
New Security Beat Link to Story

Planet Experts presents: The People's Climate March

Planet Experts brings you on the ground at the largest environmental protest in history. I produced, directed, edited, and co-DoP'd this short feature, turning it around in less than 24 hours. Second in a three part series.
Planet Experts Link to Story

Exclusive: Footage From the UN Climate Summit

Yesterday, the leaders of countries, corporations and environmental organizations gathered in New York for the UN Climate Summit. Planet Experts was there. In this exclusive video, we take you from the People’s Climate March – a historic gathering of 400,000 activists in the streets of New York – into the UN itself. Filmed and Edited within 24 hours, singlehandedly.

Dark Forests: Interview With Bopha Phorn on Investigating Land Deals, Logging, Gender Issues in Cambodia

Cambodia is a young democracy in transition. It has the highest rate of urbanization in Southeast Asia, but the lowest percentage of current urban dwellers and widespread poverty. The Mekong River, on which millions of rural Cambodians rely, is being dammed at a rapid pace, both upstream, beyond the country’s borders and within. Aided by weak land laws, both foreign and domestic industrial forces have staked claim to large swaths of the country for logging and rubber plantations, displacing thousands. Bopha Phorn, editor-at-large for The Cambodia Daily, the country’s largest English-language newspaper, has amassed an impressive record of investigative coverage on logging, government land deals, dam construction, and gender issues, but not without considerable personal risk. She was recently in Washington, DC, to be honored by the International Women’s Media Foundation for courage in journalism, due in part to an investigation into illegal logging during which one of her companions was killed by military police. Phorn has continued her investigative efforts in spite of increased government pressure. While she was in DC, we had a chance to talk to her about covering environmental corruption in Cambodia and the future of journalism in the burgeoning nation.
New Security Beat Link to Story

Gorillas and Family Planning: At the Crossroads of Community Development and Conservation in Uganda

“The potential benefits of an integrated approach are not inevitable,” Petruney said. “Effective implementation of such a multi-sectoral program requires some really important adjustments to the single-sector models of the past.” “The staff has to become familiar with a whole new universe of policies, regulations, and guidelines…and evidence, and indicators, and tools,” Petruney noted. “No matter how strong the rationale might be for PHE, or even the commitment of a passionate program to it, I don’t think that these are minor details.” It’s one thing to know about PHE and understand its potential benefits; it’s another to deliver “evidence-based programming” in the real world. The best way to overcome these knowledge barriers is to follow the model of CTPH and FHI 360 and partner with other organizations, she said.
New Security Beat Link to Story

The People's Climate March: A Prelude

A piece I produced/directed/edited/ co-DoP'd leading up to the People's Climate March for Planet Experts, to give the march a greater context. First of a three part series.
Planet Experts Link to Story

Forests on Film: New Stories From Nepal and the Congo Basin

Given growing awareness about environmental change and how it affects human life, it is perhaps not surprising there is also a growing audience for environmental filmmaking. At the 2014 Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital on , the Wilson Center premiered ECSP’s latest documentary, Scaling the Mountain: Protecting Forests for Families in Nepal.
New Security Beat Link to Story

Solidarity and Stigma: The Challenge of Improving Maternal Health for Women Living With HIV

Despite the fact that with proper interventions, the likelihood of mother-to-child transmission of HIV is less than five percent, expectant mothers with HIV or AIDS often face intense stigma and marginalization from health care providers around the world. As a result, in some areas, the mortality rate for mothers with HIV is seven to eight times greater than the rate for non-infected women, said Dr. Isabella Danel of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
New Security Beat Link to Story

Friday Podcast: Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka on Gorilla Conservation and Community Health in Uganda and DRC

CTPH’s initial goal was preventing cross-species cases of scabies and tuberculosis, which at the time were affecting both human and mountain gorilla populations. Gorillas, whose historical ranges stretch beyond the confines of the parks, were entering the land of farmers living on the edges and eating their crops, resulting in cross-infection from shared contact and sometimes-violent responses from villagers. CTPH formed “village health and conservation teams” (VHCT) to promote improved sanitation and treat disease in the human communities to help prevent these cross-species vectors. They also created response teams trained to peacefully deal with gorilla incursions. But the community health teams in particular opened up a new world for CTPH. Kalema-Zikusoka notes that a USAID officer at the time said, “We have money for family planning, but we don’t have money for zoonosis.” She says her initial thought was, “No, family planning that’s not what we’re doing, how could we be distributing condoms to people around the national park?” But after taking note of how many impoverished families in the region were stretched thin by having more children than they could handle, Kalema-Zikusoka says they saw how meeting existing demand for family planning could advance their conservation goals by creating healthier families.
New Security Beat Link to Story

When Someone Great Is Gone

An on-site account from one of LCD Soundsystem's final concerts. Cover Story, found on pages 19-21
Inflatable Ferret Link to Story


Donald Borenstein

My work has appeared in publications such as the Associated Press newswire, New Security Beat, Planet Experts, SEJournal, RatingsIntel, HardcoreDroid, and Inflatable Ferret. I am an experienced freelancer in subjects ranging from on-site coverage, environmental journalism, policy review, research and analysis, critical review (television/video games/film/music), and more! I'm also experienced working in Final Cut Pro, Premiere Pro, Audacity, and Photoshop for multi-media coverage.

Please feel free to contact me at at any time.

Profile Photo Credit: Hans Spiegel



  • Audio Editing
  • Critical Review
  • Interviewing
  • Research
  • AP Stylebook
  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • Final Cut Pro
  • Photography
  • WordPress Platform
  • HTML
  • Videography
  • policy analysis
  • environmental policy
  • environmental journalism