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NetConference 2015 debates new UNESCO study on the Internet

News - Tue, 03/03/2015 - 09:14

The study is the result of a global consultation process that followed a mandate from UNESCO’s 195 Member States for a comprehensive study into Internet-related issues under UNESCO’s mandate. The submissions received during July-December 2014 have been consolidated into a draft report, titled Keystones to foster inclusive Knowledge Societies.

To discuss this draft, and the options it proposes for UNESCO member states to consider, more than 300 participants are meeting at UNESCO headquarters in Paris on 3-4 March 2015.

Called CONNECTing the dots, the event provide a platform to explore the findings of the study in preparation for its finalisation. This multistakeholder event features presentations by a wide range of speakers from all parts of the world. These include participants from governments, civil society, academia, private sector, the technical community, inter-governmental and international organizations as well as noted thought leaders, innovators and pioneers in the Internet Governance space.

The options outlined in the study will be presented to UNESCO’s Member States when they meet to determine the Organization’s programme and priorities at the next General Conference later this year. The research also represents a significant contribution to the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)+10 Review process and the post-2015 international development agenda.

Special Academic Session on Safety of Journalists

News - Tue, 24/02/2015 - 10:11

Silencing the journalist through death is the ultimate act of censorship, which averages to more than one journalist killed every week. The situation is further aggravated by other threats ranging from intimidation and harassment to restrictive policies and arbitrary detention, including attacks on women journalists. Equally worrying, more than nine out of ten cases of killing of journalists remain unsolved. The end result is a vicious cycle of impunity and a chilling effect on society in a climate of fear and self-censorship.

Nevertheless, until recently, journalists’ safety has seldom been a topic of systematic and in-depth academic research. Therefore, in collaboration with the Global Communication Association (GCA) Conference, UNESCO is organizing a Special Session on Safety of Journalists during the 10th GCA Conference taking place in the city of Berlin, Germany from 16 -19 July 2015.

This Special Session is the first in a series of dedicated workshops organized by UNESCO, aiming to strengthen cooperation with academia in line with the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity, and to establish an academic research agenda on journalists’ safety. In the Special Session, different aspects of journalists’ safety and issue of impunity will be discussed. The Special Session invites theoretically informed papers/presentations covering issues such as

  • Media development, human rights and journalists’ safety
  • Societal causes and effects of journalists’ (un)safety
  • Legal frameworks and journalists’ safety
  • Journalistic practices, working conditions and journalists’ safety
  • Journalism education, professionalism and safety
  • Journalists’ safety in conflict and non-conflict situations
  • Specific safety threats (gender-specific, topic specific such as war or crime reporting)
  • Psychological effects of safety threats
  • Measuring journalists’ safety

As the UN agency with a specific mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom, UNESCO actively promotes the safety of journalists and those who produce journalism. UNESCO has championed the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity which is the first concerted effort within the UN system to address these issues via a multi-stakeholder and holistic approach. The UN Plan aims towards the creation of a free and safe environment for journalists and media workers in both conflict and non-conflict situations, with a view to strengthen peace, democracy, and development worldwide. The UN Plan is a global reference point on safety of journalists and the issue of impunity. The UN Plan is referenced in landmark resolutions adopted the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council.

Details concerning submission dates and requirements can be accessed through the conference’s website at http://gca2015.com/call-for-papers/ . For more information concerning the Special Session on Safety of Journalists and of UNESCO’s work in the area of safety of journalists, please contact Mr. Ming-Kuok Lim (mk.lim(at)unesco.org)

Djibouti takes steps to tackle gender equality in media

News - Mon, 23/02/2015 - 16:18

This is an important step for our country,” explains Zeinab Mohammed, journalist and member of the Association.

One year after the ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women in 1999, the government of Djibouti appointed a delegate to review and analyze all of Djibouti’s gender-related policies. By 2003, political participation showed signs of improvement introducing, for the first time, the election of seven women into Parliament.

Legislative and other gender equality measures have been building up during the years leading to the landmark challenge that is now attempting to introduce gender-sensitive policies throughout the broadcast and press system. Although a number of initiatives continue to promote the role of women in Djiboutian society, many measures have not applied to the media sector.

This is why gender equality in the media is a priority area for the association,” said Zeinab Mohamed, “A lot still needs to be done in terms of gender equality."

Djibouti is characterized by a state-owned radio and television station, Radiodiffusion-Television de Djibouti (RTD).  Two newspapers are published in Djibouti, namely Nation (in French) and Al Qarn (in Arabic).  Djibouti also has a news agency, l’Agence djiboutienne   de l’Information which publishes only on the Internet.

Members of the Journalists’ Association concluded that UNESCO’s Gender-Sensitive Indicators for Media (GSIM) would be used to measure gender equality in content and media operations to promote gender equality and fair gender representation within media organizations and content.

The Association intends to use the results of this research based project to expand its fields of action and promote gender equality and empowerment of women in and through the media.

IFAP Addresses Well Being in Digital Media

News - Thu, 19/02/2015 - 09:48

This landmark event, organized by the Israel National Commission for UNESCO and its National IFAP Committee along with the Department of Education at Ben Gurion University, the Sammy Ofer School of Communication at the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya and the Open University of Israel will be held from 17 - 19 February 2014 in Beer Sheba, Israel.

According to Mr Getachew Engida, UNESCO’s Deputy Director-General, the Forum comes at a critical juncture. “We are living through times of incredible changes with new opportunities for addressing development challenges… But, we are also seeing new digital divides and new forms of exclusion that raise hard ethical questions about balance, rhythm and harmony, indeed about well-being. So we must give all people particularly young women and men the tools and opportunities to ensure that they are not controlled by technology but rather harness its full power for their own fulfillment and the benefit of all. Furthermore, as we look towards the post-2015 period, I think the outcomes of the Forum can help to shape more effectives strategies and frameworks for enlisting information and communication technologies to implement the global sustainable development agenda”.

The conference will take place in two phases consisting of a two-day expert conference followed by a one-day conference aimed at raising awareness amongst the general public.

The conference of experts will provide a forum for sharing and comparing the latest research and emerging global experiences and trends in this field. In particular, their deliberations will seek to deepen understanding of how the long-term interactions between digital media, on one hand and individuals and society on the other, are affecting well-being. These experts will also focus on the development of indicators and the establishment of a program to measure and assess well-being.

The one-day event for general audiences will be structured around lectures, panel sessions and debates that will culminate with the launching of the Forum on Well Being in Digital Media. The event is expected to attract media and generate broader awareness and understanding of the related challenges amongst the wider public.

The Forum on Well Being will serve as a global observatory supporting ongoing monitoring and measurement, collating research and policy documents on digital well-being. It will also host an online community of practice that links researchers, policy makers, users and industry actors to share information and develop responses that enhance well-being for individuals and society.

The intergovernmental Information for All Programme was established in 2001. It provides a platform for international policy discussions, cooperation and the development of guidelines for action in the area of access to information and knowledge. The Programme supports Member States to develop and implement national information policy and strategy frameworks.

More information:

UNESCO launches a national dialogue on freedom of expression and safety of journalists in Morocco

News - Tue, 17/02/2015 - 11:04

The series of meetings aims at creating a space for an open dialogue between stakeholders on the issue of freedom of expression and the means to enhance the judiciary safety of journalists. In particular the dialogue will help to create a common and shared understating of the notion of freedom of expression, to foster sharing of experiences and good legal practices to promote freedom of expression, and to develop an advocacy strategy to protect journalists and fight against impunity of crimes against journalists.

The first meeting will be held in Rabat on 18 and 19 February and will introduce the notion of freedom of expression. It will then be followed by the analysis of the draft Moroccan press code and its impacts for the safety of journalists.

This activity is made possible thanks to the support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.

UNESCO launches Maghreb Network of Media and Information Literacy

News - Tue, 17/02/2015 - 10:57

Since the launch of UNESCO’s Media and Information Literacy Curriculum for Teachers in 2011 in Fès, Morocco, there has been an increased demand for the creation of a pool of expert trainers on Media and Information Literacy in a view to widespread the teaching of MIL in schools and integrate MIL into the extra-curriculum activities of young people in the Maghreb countries.

In this context UNESCO’s Rabat Office in partnership with the Arab Institute of Human Rights put in place together a plan to create and launch the first regional network of MIL expert trainers. Eighteen future expert trainers from various profiles (teachers, journalists, media professionals, librarians, etc.) duly selected by UNESCO are meeting this week in Tunis for three days to update their knowledge and expertise on MIL, enhance their skills in pedagogical practices of MIL, and agree on a plan of action to widespread the integration of MIL into the life of young people in the Maghreb countries.

Media and Information Literacy recognizes the primary role of information and media in our everyday lives. It lies at the core of freedom of expression and information since it empowers citizens to understand the functions of media and other information providers, to critically evaluate their content, and to make informed decisions as users and producer of information and media content.

This activity is made possible thanks to the support of the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.

Journée mondiale de la radio : UNESCO Rabat met la jeunesse à l’antenne

Actualités - Fri, 13/02/2015 - 17:17

Des experts pour parler « jeune » sur des radios à grandes audiences, des émissions faites par des jeunes et pour les jeunes, des spots de célébration… Cette année la radio prend un sacré coup de jeune !

Hit Radio, partenaire de l’événement diffusera tout au long de la Journée des spots de célébration invitant des jeunes à parler de leurs idéaux, leurs analyses, leurs réalités et le lien qui les unie à ce média. Des micros-trottoirs que Louaï  Hafa, journaliste radio à e-Joussour et militant est allé recueillir avec son enregistreur audio.

Le paysage médiatique marocain n’est pas en reste. Atlantic Radio, partenaire de première importance consacrera 7 minutes en prime time à l’UNESCO, la Journée et à la jeunesse marocaine. Sept minutes de célébration, d’analyses et d’échanges.

La radio par les jeunes pour les jeunes

E-Joussour justement a saisi cette opportunité en proposant une initiative inédite au Maroc. Deux émissions d’une heure, l’une en français, l’autre en darija, diffusées sur les webradios au Maroc et dans la région Maghreb- Machrek. Durant deux heures de programme, une animatrice, un animateur, des invités jeunes et engagés dans le projet NET MED Youth au Maroc, l’analyse  de l’UNESCO, pour des réflexions, débats et impressions à chaud des jeunes. Les thèmes : liberté d’expression des jeunes à la radio, représentativité des jeunes et nouvelles formes d’expressions possibles … Retrouvez l’émission sur e-Joussour.

J20Café : un café-débat pour clore la célébration

Parmi ces nouvelles formes d’expression, Marwan Elaarj en a créé et valorisé une : le J20Café. Organisé par J20.MA, en partenariat avec la Fondation HIBA et en collaboration avec l’UNESCO, J20Café est une rencontre débat qui se veut un espace d’interaction avec le public. L’objectif de J20Café est d’aborder divers thématiques socioculturelles d’actualité en rapport avec les jeunes au Maroc. A l’occasion de la journée mondiale de la Radio, et pour sa 5ème édition, J20Café a choisi d’ouvrir le débat autour de la radio, les jeunes et liberté d’expression dans le cadre du projet NET MED YOUTH de l’UNESCO. Ainsi, les questions qui se posent sont :

  • Jusqu’à quel degré peut-on parler de liberté d’expression ?
  • Est-ce que l’émergence de nouvelles radios garantie une expression plus libre et participative ?
  • Quelles pourraient être les alternatives à la radio traditionnelle ?

Autant de questions auxquelles il sera possible de trouver des réponses. Pour cela, rendez-vous le 13 février au Cinéma Renaissance, 360 Avenue Mohammed V, 10000 Rabat, Maroc ou d’ores-et-déjà sur la page Facebook de l’événement.

World Radio Day: UNESCO Rabat gets youth on air

News - Fri, 13/02/2015 - 16:57

Experts will speak “in the words of youth” to large audiences through radio, broadcasts made by youth and for youth, celebration spots ... This year the radio goes through a big makeover!

Hit Radio, a partner for the event, will broadcast celebration spots throughout the Day, inviting young people to talk about their ideals, their analyses, their realities and the link between them and this media. Vox pops that Louaï Hafa, radio journalist and advocate at e-Joussour went collecting with his audio recorder.

The Moroccan media landscape is not staying behind. Atlantic Radio, a major partner, will devote seven minutes in prime time to UNESCO, the Day and Moroccan youth. Seven minutes of celebration, analyses and exchanges.

Radio for youth and by youth

E-Joussour took this opportunity to propose an unprecedented initiative in Morocco: two one-hour programs, one in French and one in darija, broadcasted on Internet radio in Morocco and the Maghreb-Mashreq region. During the two hours of programming, a presenter, a commentator, young guests engaged in the NET MED Youth project in Morocco, the analysis of UNESCO, will come together to reflect, discuss and share impressions of youth. The themes: youth´s freedom of expression on the radio, youth´s representation and new possible forms of expression… Find the programme on e-Joussour.

J20Café: a debate-café to close the celebration

Among these new forms of expression, Marwan Elaarj has created and given value to one: the J20Café. Organized by J20.MA, in partnership with the HIBA Foundation and in collaboration with UNESCO, J20Café is a debate forum that aims to facilitate a space for interaction with the public. The objective of J20Café is to address various current socio-cultural issues related to youth in Morocco. On the occasion of World Radio Day, J20Café chose, for its 5th edition, to open a debate on radio, youth and freedom of expression in the framework of UNESCO’s NET-MED YOUTH project. Thus, the questions that arise are:

To what extent can we speak of freedom of expression?
Does the emergence of new radios guarantee a more free participatory speech?
What could be the alternatives to traditional radio?

So many questions that will find answers! For this purpose, come to the Renaissance Theater on 13 February, 360 Avenue Mohammed V, 10000 Rabat, Morocco, or join the event´s page on Facebook

Towards UNESCO’s World Atlas of Languages: Final Recommendations for the Action Plan

News - Wed, 11/02/2015 - 15:52

According to this document, stakeholders such as governments, academia and professional community, industry, media and content producers, and others should, among others:

  1. Formulate, contribute and adopt sustainable national language policies on the crucial issue of linguistic diversity and multilingualism, including promotion, safeguarding, representation, technological development, especially for the improvement of access to cyberspace for disadvantaged communities;
  2. Encourage developments on language technology systems and tools with extensive multilingual capabilities, with regard to operating systems, search engines and web browsers and to consider facilitating affordable Internet access in public service institutions.
  3. Strengthen international cooperation and building partnerships to support capacity-building for the production and distribution of local and indigenous content in digital and open forms and work to provide necessary resources to alleviate barriers for a different language users, including marginalized communities.

Recalling the importance of upscaling the existing tool for promotion and monitoring of linguistic diversity and multilingualism, experts recommended to develop UNESCO’s World Atlas of Languages along the following steps over the next two-year period:

  1. Establishment of an Advisory Group composed of professionals and experts within the relevant fields, respecting geographical representation and gender balance;
  2. Development of a mechanism and sustainable tools for monitoring language vitality and for the assessment, promotion and preservation using innovative technological solutions;
  3. Promotion of multilingualism in the context of the international frameworks such as Post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals and on the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) outcomes implementation and seek support for other international events.

Once operational, the UNESCO’s World Atlas of Languages should contain a full data on languages, policies, regulations, technical recommendations and best practices in this field. It is expected that a new globally accessible and open online platform will be used for monitoring and promotion of the world’s languages online, strengthen cooperation and knowledge sharing using open and inclusive technological solutions among international, regional and national language institutions.

The international expert meeting, held from 28 to 29 October 2014 in Paris, was organized by UNESCO in cooperation with the Government of Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug-Ugra (Russian Federation), the Permanent Delegation of the Russian Federation for UNESCO and the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme.

UNESCO’s Media Development Indicators introduced in China to support local media

News - Tue, 10/02/2015 - 12:11

Concepts contained in the MDIs such as public service broadcasting “are relevant to fulfill the information needs of many local communities and vulnerable groups” said Dr. Zhongda Yuan from the Beijing Normal University, one of the workshop’s facilitators. Dr. Yuan has also translated into Chinese the IPDC-endorsed publication Media Development Indicators: A framework for assessing media development in close consultation with the UNESCO Beijing Office.

This workshop was organized within the framework of the IPDC project “Improving the Media Landscape in the Ethnic Minority Area of Yunnan Province”. This project also involved an MDI-based research activity in four pilot areas of the Yunnan province which comprises 26 ethnic groups and more than 25 local broadcast outlets, in additional to a provincial broadcaster, catering to 47 million inhabitants. The research was conducted in the form a surveys among both media professionals and their audiences.

The survey polled a sample of 115 media professionals, 75% of which were from minorities. The results highlighted the need to increase locally-produced content which is scarce due to lack of adequate staffing and resources in local media outlets. They also suggested the need to introduce media self-regulation and to enhance production skills. Concerning safety of media workers, about five per cent of the Survey’s respondents said that they had been harassed or threatened because of their profession, while one reporter stated having been subject to a physical attack, and another having been forced to reveal a source.

The findings of the survey portrayed a working environment in which small media outlets have to fulfill obligations towards local authorities. They also revealed a trend of mounting commercial pressure, with an increased part of the running budget of local media outlets needing to be generated by advertisement, leaving them struggling for economic sustainability in a context of competition with bigger media players.

From the survey involving a sample of the media audience it emerged that the majority of viewers of local television outlets prefer watching “TV news and information programs” (69% of respondents), followed by “arts programs” (11%). These results contrast with audiences’ preferences for provincial and national outlets, where entertainment programmes are most commonly sought. A clear majority of the audiences of local television outlets surveyed would like to see more locally-produced content broadcast (83% of respondents), reflecting the voices of ethnic minorities (65%), poor people (28%) and women (24%).

Such request for locally-produced content can be explained by the fact that “people want information relevant to them and their livelihoods” explained Mr. Haining Wu, Secretary-General of the CSFFTAP. The survey’s conclusions have been shared with relevant national authorities and CSFFTAP is planning to organize a “high-level” roundtable discussion later this year. CSFFTAP’s Secretary-General hopes that these activities will contribute to addressing current challenges of multilingual and local media outlets.

As a follow up to the survey’s recommendations, CSFFTAP has organized a first training workshop in Kunming, focusing on TV Program Production in Ethnic Minority Languages, and benefiting 30 media professionals selected from amongst nine local media outlets. Twelve ethnic minorities (Bai, Dai, Hani, Hui, Jingbo, Lisu, Miao, Naxi, Yi, Wa, Zang, and Zhuang) were represented and 13 of the participants were women.

Introducing the MDI methodology at the workshop, Andrea Cairola, Adviser for Communication and Information at the UNESCO Beijing Office, mentioned the importance of media pluralism and multilingualism to reflect the diversities of society. He also quoted UNESCO’s Director-General Ms. Irina Bokova stressing that: “Every language is equal and linked. Each is a unique force for understanding, writing and expressing reality…It is through language that we make sense of the world and that we can transform it for the better.”

One media professional from an ethnic minority who attended the workshop in Kunming said that “this kind of training and the MDI framework are really useful and can be applied in our daily work.” Other participants expressed the wish that such trainings and assessments contribute to advocating for policies supporting the flourishing of local media.

The CSFFTAP had applied to IPDC for support with a project proposal that was approved by the IPDC Bureau at its 57th meeting in March 2013. IPDC is the only multilateral forum in the UN system designed to mobilize the international community to discuss and promote media development.

UNESCO y SciELO lanzan libro sobre los 15 de SciELO

Noticias - Mon, 09/02/2015 - 17:14

Destacando la importancia de la publicación, el Dr. Indrajit Banerjee, Director de la División de las Sociedades del Conocimiento, Comunicación y Sector de Información, UNESCO señaló “SciELO fue lanzado cuatro años antes de la Declaración de Budapest, y seis años antes de la Declaración de Berlín sobre Acceso Abierto y fue pionero en el concepto de Acceso Abierto y trajo la investigación al fácil alcance de la gente común. A partir de 10 revistas en un seminario público en São Paulo en su año de inicio al nivel actual de 1.000 revistas y 500.000 artículos descargables libremente es una hazaña notable y un ejemplo de enfoque de Acceso Abierto por excelencia!”

De igual manera, teniendo en cuenta la importancia de la publicación, el Sr. Abel Packer, Director de SciELO declaró que “el espíritu pionero y el alcance de SciELO es mejorar la calidad, visibilidad, uso y impacto de las revistas que están disponibles en forma Abierta. SciELO integra las funciones de indexación, evaluación del desempeño de la revista, publicación online en acceso abierto y diseminación siguiendo las normas internacionales de más alta calidad“. SciELO se implementa a través de una red de colecciones nacionales de revistas que se extiende a través de 16 países, la mayoría de América Latina y Caribe, más Portugal, Sud África y España.

Siguiendo el mandato dado a la UNESCO en 2009, UNESCO ha estado trabajando en el campo del Acceso Abierto para fortalecer el mandato de clearing-house de la organización. La 187ª sesión del Comité Ejecutivo aprobó la estrategia de la UNESCO para la promoción del Acceso Abierto a la información e investigación científica, que también fue adoptada por la Conferencia General en la 36ª sesión. Implícito en la estrategia está diseminar los enfoques claves al Acceso Abierto que no solamente son pioneros sino también son pioneros en que se dio un ejemplo replicable a todo el mundo. La publicación actual se publica en el marco del mismo mandato.

SciELO (Scientific Electronic Library Online) es una biblioteca electrónica de Revistas de Acceso Abierto. Es una parte integral de un proyecto desarrollado por FAPESP - Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo y creado en colaboración con BIREME – Centro Latino-Americano e do Caribe de Informação em Ciências da Saúde. Desde 2002, el Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq) también apoya a SciELO.

First Meeting on promoting the rights of persons with disabilities in Uganda through the use of inclusive technologies

News - Tue, 03/02/2015 - 15:39

Fifteen participants representing government institutions, Disabled Persons Organisations (DPOs), academic institutions and the UN System attended the Policy Board and Management Committee meeting with the aim to provide technical input to the activities of the 2-year project.  The implementation of the two year project will be guided by the Policy Board and Management Committee, consisting of all relevant stakeholders in order to ensure that the project is both focused on national priorities and comprehensive in exploring the use of Inclusive Technologies for people with disabilities in Uganda.

In keeping with Uganda’s Vision 2040 and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Articles 9, 21 and 24), this project will be achieved by a two track approach. One track will focus on strengthening the policy environment through the development of relevant policies and guidelines as well as the establishment of an appropriate governance structure. The second track will focus on the development of educational materials in accessible formats. In addition, the programme will engage organizations of persons with disabilities, key government partners (including teachers), information professionals and publishing companies into a multistakeholder coalition to promote the creation and distribution of accessible information, especially educational resources, for persons with visual and hearing impairments in Uganda. The programme will support the coalition in monitoring the implementation of initiatives using of Inclusive technology to advance inclusive education and access to information.

Members of the Policy Board and Management Committee expressed their satisfaction in this initiative as many DPOs and stakeholders working with learners in Uganda, do not know the potential of Inclusive technologies in ensuring Inclusive Education and Access to Information.  

The Policy Board and Management Committee will exist for the period corresponding to the duration of the project (2 years). The Policy Board and Management Committee will meet on a quarterly basis in Kampala, Uganda but will allow for remote participation in using new technologies.

The Innovative use of ICTs for persons with disabilities form part of UNESCO’s actions to enhance the full participation of citizens in the knowledge societies.

With a view to empowering persons with disabilities and assuring the inclusion of disability issues into the sustainable development agenda of Member States, UNESCO, in cooperation with the Government of India, with support of The State of Kuwait, and also international, regional and national public and private partners, organized the first international Conference entitled From Exclusion to Empowerment: The Role of Information and Communication Technologies for Persons with Disabilities held in New Delhi from 24 to 26 November 2014.

The Conference was attended by some 700 participants from 80 countries, alongside with the film festival themed around disability issues, an ICT solutions-oriented exhibition and a special workshop. High-level dialogues were held at plenary level and in 15 parallel sessions, divided into three thematic discussions on partnerships and sustainable development, accessibility and technological solutions, and access to information and knowledge (http://www.unesco-ci.org/ict-pwd/). The Outcome Document – The New Delhi Declaration on Inclusive ICTs for Persons with Disabilities: Making Empowerment a Reality, was developed by the open-ended, multistakeholder and high level drafting group recalling the urgent need for the full and unconditional inclusion of all citizens in the life of societies.

UNESCO kicks off a large-scale media landscape analysis for Jordan

News - Mon, 02/02/2015 - 16:17

The UNESCO Media Development Indicators framework is applied in countries worldwide to carry out in-depth assessments of their media environment. These assessments result in a series of recommendations aimed at helping policy makers and media development actors to address gaps on the way to a free, independent and professional media environment – the core objectives of the Support to Media in Jordan project.

“The MDI framework is agreed by UNESCO’s Member States and offers a unique research tool to measure what is needed to improve media freedom, independence and professionalism” stated Johan Romare, UNESCO Project Manager for the Support to Media in Jordan project.

Following Tunisia, Egypt and Palestine, Jordan will be the fourth Arab country in which a comprehensive MDI assessment will be completed. The MDI study for Jordan is implemented in partnership with International Media Support (IMS), an international media development organization that has been involved in several MDI assessments worldwide. Biljana Tatomir, Deputy Director of IMS, emphasized that "MDI-based assessments provide a basis for an informed debate between all stakeholders involved in media reform efforts by pointing out achievements as well as areas in need of further improvement. I believe the forthcoming assessment stands a good chance to serve its purpose in Jordan due to expressed interest and commitment by the government, civil society and media stakeholders."

The research team for Jordan includes two international researches and four national researchers with extensive experience in media development and research. The assessment is expected to be published in July. The recommendations from the report will feed into the review process of the Action Plan of the national media strategy, a main activity of the “Support to Media in Jordan” project. Currently, an advisory board for the study is being set up.

The “Support to Media in Jordan” project is part of a broader EU initiative to support civil society and media in Jordan and is implemented by the UNESCO Amman office in close collaboration with the main state and non-state media institutions in Jordan.

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