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National Open University of Nigeria commissions a unit for Open Educational Resources.

News - Fri, 13/11/2015 - 12:18

Open Educational Resources (OER) are any type of educational materials released with an open license or into the public domain that allows a user to legally and freely copy, use adapt and share the materials. 

The NOUN OER Unit was officially adopted in August 2014, after due clearance from the Governing Council and the Senate and reports directly to the Office of the Vice Chancellor. The Unit was operating from a temporary location in the University and the commissioning of the Unit’s new Office strengthens NOUN’s commitment to championing OER.

The Vice Chancellor of NOUN, Prof. Vincent Tenebe officially cut the ribbon for the new office, which cheered the staffs of NOUN OER Unit as well as the NOUN OER Committee members. The opening was also attended by principal staff of the University.

Prof. Tenebe spoke highly of the achievements of the OER Unit fully recognizing the Head of the Unit, Dr Jane-frances Agbu, “NOUN in line with its vision and mission has embraced OER emphatically to contribute to the humanistic project of sharing knowledge for common good”.

Accompanied by Dr Agbu and other Unit staff, Prof. Tenebe toured the new office and reviewed a presentation of the Unit’s activities from 2014 to 2015. Prof. Tenebe noted that the OER Unit staff were learning very quickly and in the right direction. He encouraged all academic of NOUN staff to make contact with the OER Unit to learn about OERs and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) to key into global current trends in Education.

In his closing remarks, Prof. Tenebe enjoined all the schools and staff to collaborate and consult with the Unit in order to learn how to properly convert course materials into OERs, follow the recommended steps, as well as learn how to use OERs to add value to educational content.

He thanked UNESCO for their collaboration and guidance, and the funding support of the EU for the NOUN OER Project. “The Unit will help to disseminate the tenets of OER/MOOCs to institutions around Nigeria, West Africa and beyond. On behalf of the Governing Council, Senate, staff and students of NOUN congratulate OER Unit”.

The NOUN OER Project at NOUN  has been very active with three sensitization workshops in OERs and MOOCs:

From 13 to 16 October, 2015, the Head of the OER Unit, Dr Agbu presented at the 26th Conference of the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) on the NOUN OER Project titled: “Capacity building for the adoption of open educational resources in NOUN: emerging issues”.

The presentation shared the findings and emerging issues triggered by the capacity building experiences on OERs in NOUN:

  • Though NOUN staff appeared to be aware of OER, they believed that NOUN course materials are OERs, which is not so as presently constituted
  • A well-defined OER policy is needed to guide processes of OERization in NOUN
  • A logical framework was essential to guide the process of OERization including:
    1. Revision of course materials
    2. value-added new content
    3. Conversion to EPUB, HTML, RTF, PDF (open file formats)
    4. Post assessment quality assurance

Towards a Revised UNESCO’s Language Vitality Index

News - Fri, 13/11/2015 - 11:51

The major objective of the meeting is to seek expert advice of the revision of UNESCO Language Vitality Index and discuss further steps on the elaboration of a more comprehensive language vitality and endangerment assessment framework. The gathering in London is a follow up to the international expert meeting held by UNESCO, Intergovernmental Information for All (IFAP) and other partners in October 2014 in Paris, France during which the recommendations for the Action Plan were provided for the development of the UNESCO World Atlas of Languages.

This work has been initiated by UNESCO with a conviction that there is an imperative need for language documentation, development of new language policy initiatives and better sharing of available language resources in language, information and memory institutions to enhance the vitality of these languages, promote their presence on the Internet, media and public domain and last but not the least to encourage the global community to act together.

In order to achieve this, a systematic collection of language related data, documentation of language resources using Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), and empowerment of linguistic communities are required. It is not enough to support traditional language documentation practices and approaches, research results sharing and community-based work. There is a need for creation of new models emphasizing a role of language and linguistic diversity for development of any society. 

Language matters for sustainable development not only if it is relevant to its users, but also to nation and global community to accomplish diverse goals. Therefore, it is important to demonstrate relevance of language and linguistic diversity within the context of societal development based on an analysis of the sociolinguistic situation of a language.

For the past decade, UNESCO has actively promoted the concept of knowledge societies that are open, pluralistic, equitable, and participatory. UNESCO is strongly committed to promoting linguistic diversity and multilingualism, particularly on the Internet. Through the voice of the local communities, universities, information and media professionals, IT sector and governments showcased in this document, UNESCO demonstrates its major federative role in fostering international cooperation and promoting innovation, linguistic diversity and multilingualism on the Internet.

Inception workshop held for community radio stations under UNESCO/SIDA project in Uganda

News - Fri, 13/11/2015 - 11:32

The workshop attracted 24 participants comprising of 17 men and 7 women drawn from the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MICT), Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), UNESCO Antennae Office in Uganda, Media Council of Uganda (MCU), Uganda Association of Journalist (UAJ), Audience Dialogue, TRAC FM, and the four beneficiary radio stations namely, Radio Apac FM, Speak FM, Nakaseke FM, and Mama FM.

During the workshop, Mr Kyetume Kasanga, Principal Information Officer from Directorate of Information and National Guidance who represented the Minister of Information and Communications Technology for Uganda, stated that “The Government is committed to the development of the media sector and thus gives full support to UNESCOs media development initiative for community radios in Uganda. This project lies within our ongoing media reforms and I wish to encourage community radios represented here to take full advantage of it to effectively contribute to improvement of governance by raising awareness of social issues that affect our local communities. As media practitioners, I encourage you to play your part responsibly without fear or favour, even in this elective season.”

At the workshop participants were taken through presentations on UNESCOs administrative procedures that will guide implementation of the project activities; the process of self-monitoring for Community Radios in the project, how to write project proposals for selected priority activities in the project, code of ethics for journalism practice and on accreditation of journalists in Uganda. They were also taken through a presentation on TRAC FM, a free, cloud based software platform that uses radio and SMS to track citizen reports and collect citizen feedback. The beneficiary community radios were taken through how the TRAC FM platform can be adopted by their respective stations and be used to report on service delivery and also rate leadership performance through interactive radio talk-shows and SMS at their local communities.

Mr Peter Balaba, Programme Manager at Nakaseke FM stated that “I am very happy that we are finally part of UNESCOs SIDA project. It is clear from the presentations that the project not only focuses on building capacity of radio staffs but it will also assist our radio stations to put into place sustainability measures that will help us grow our radios beyond this project. This will enable us bring a great difference to our society through the programmes that we produce and air at our stations.”

Participants also took part in a round table discussion on how to leverage the potential of ICTs to empower community radios in Uganda. This was aimed at providing them with an opportunity to discuss and interact with various stakeholders working in the media sector on issues affecting their operations in the media sector. Ms Jane Ongom a producer from Speak FM said, “I am happy that I have gained a lot of knowledge about the UNESCO project from this inception workshop. I and my team are therefore now prepared us for the actual implementation of the project at Speak FM to bring about the development change in our local community through our radio programmes.”

The inception workshop was organized as part of UNESCOs continuing media development initiatives in the region under its ongoing SIDA funded project themed: “Empowering Local Radios with ICTs” in Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda.

Internet Universality explored at the 10th IGF

News - Thu, 12/11/2015 - 15:43

Her message was delivered at the ongoing 10th Internet Governance Forum taking place in João Pessoa, Brazil, from 10 to 13 November 2015, during her speech at the High Level Leaders Meeting on 10 November.

Ms Brito also addressed the IGF main session "Internet economy and sustainable development", where she motivated that the Sustainable Development Goal 16.10. on public access to information could be supported by the concept of Internet Universality.

Internet Universality is predicated on the development of the Internet according to four principles: (i) that the Internet is human Rights-based, (ii) Open, (iii) Accessible to all, and (iv) nurtured by Multi-stakeholder participation (summarized with acronym R.O.A.M.).

Discussion about Internet Universality at IGF also highlighted the value of further developing indicators to assess the Internet ecosystem, which is very much in line with the outcome document of the Connecting the Dots Conference, Internet Universality concept and recent decisions of the Intergovernmental Programme for the Development of Communication.

During the WSIS+10 review main session at the 10th IGF, UNESCO representative Ms Xianhong Hu highlighted that Internet Universality resonates with the Geneva Declaration of Principles and the Tunis Commitment. She noted that It recognised the universality, indivisibility, interdependence and interrelation of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the rights to privacy, participation in culture, education, gender equality, association, security of person and development.

Ms Hu also suggested that the link to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) should be strengthened in the draft WSIS Outcome Document and make specific reference to SDG 16.10, which aims to “ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreements.”

The positive responses to Internet Universality in Brazil mirrored discussions taking place at the Communication and Information Commission of the 38th General Conference of UNESCO. The Commission on Wednesday recommended the Internet Universality concept for endorsement by the full 195 Member States next week.

Earlier, at an IGF pre-event on the “Social Role of Communications and Strengthening Freedom of Expression”, jointly organized by the Brazilian Ministries of Culture and Communication, UNESCO shared its work on promoting press freedom and freedom of expression online and off-line, as well as media and information literacy.    

Ms Brito also noted there that UNESCO’s media development indicators were “a set of worldwide accepted standards to assess the media ecosystem and, therefore, can be taken as a useful tool to assist governments that are undertaking regulatory reform.”

In his intervention, Mr Guilherme Canela, UNESCO Regional Adviser on Communication and Information, highlighted key challenges underlined by the UNESCO’s 2014 report World Trends Report on Freedom of Expression and Media Development: Regional overview of Latin American and the Caribbean. He said the report was an important road map for debates on media regulation within the regional context.

The challenges relate to a) the need for independent regulators; b) the high concentration of media ownership; c) the need for expanding media pluralism via public service broadcasters and community media; and d) the need for better regulation of governmental advertising.

UNESCO at IGF also organized a workshop on balancing transparency and privacy and gave interventions at workshops on hate speech, encryption, ethics and privacy, civil society's participation, and cyber abuse of women.

The Organization’s delegation also held bilateral meetings with civil society organizations, academics, the private sector, and representatives of governments and multilateral organizations, on a wide range of topics.

Commémoration en Tunisie de la Journée internationale de la fin de l'impunité pour les crimes commis contre des journalistes

Actualités - Thu, 12/11/2015 - 11:28

L’atelier a réuni plus de 80 participants : défenseurs des droits de l’homme, avocats, représentants des organes médiatiques et de la société civile, journalistes et d’autres représentants d’organisations engagées dans la promotion et la protection de la liberté d’expression.

M. David Kaye, rapporteur spécial des Nations Unies sur la promotion et la protection du droit à la liberté d’opinion et d’expression, avait envoyé un message vidéo qui a été diffusé aux participants pendant la réunion. M. Kaye a déclaré : « L’importance de la Tunisie et votre expérience ne peut pas être sous-estimée. Ce que vous faites, les valeurs que vous défendez et les sujets que vous abordez dans vos reportages sont d’une importance cruciale, parce que c’est un message d’espoir dans un pays en transition, mais aussi parce que le pays doit faire face à de graves menaces de la part de groupes qui ne souhaitent pas le succès de la transition, enfin parce que la Tunisie offre une autre voie dans la région. »

Outre des débats sur de nombreuses questions, la journée a été l’occasion de présenter la campagne de sensibilisation sur la sécurité des journalistes et la fin de l’impunité, organisée par le Syndicat national des journalistes tunisiens en partenariat avec le Haut-Commissariat aux droits de l’homme et l’UNESCO. Cette campagne, qui couvre cinq provinces, est destinée aux journalistes, aux militants des droits de l’homme et aux organisations de la société civile. La campagne propose également un forum pour débattre sur le cadre législatif et les pratiques en matière de sécurité des journalistes en Tunisie. En lien avec la JIFI, cette campagne a débuté le 26 octobre à Tunis et s’est clôturée le 5 novembre. Une vidéo montrant les trois premiers ateliers a été projetée au cours de la séance d’ouverture de l’atelier.

Cet événement était organisé dans le cadre du Plan d’Action des Nations Unies sur la sécurité des journalistes et la question de l’impunité, qui en appelle aux parties prenantes pour promouvoir un environnement sûr permettant aux journalistes de faire leur travail en toute indépendance et sans ingérence excessive.

La journée était organisée par le Syndicat national des journalistes tunisiens, la Coalition civile pour la défense de la liberté d’expression, le Centre de Tunis pour la liberté de la presse, l’association Vigilance pour la démocratie et l’Etat civil et la Ligue tunisienne des droits de l’homme, en coopération avec Article 19 et Reporters sans frontières et avec le soutien du Haut-Commissariat aux droits de l’homme et de l’UNESCO.

International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists commemorated in Tunisia

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

The symposium was attended by more than 80 people, among them human rights activists, lawyers, representatives of media institutions and civil society, journalists and other organizations engaged in the promotion and protection of freedom of expression.

Mr David Kaye, Special Rapporteur of the United Nations on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, had sent a video message to the participants, which was shown during the symposium. Mr Kaye declared: “The importance of Tunisia and your experience cannot be understated. What you are doing and what you are advocating for and the nature of your reporting is critical, both because it is hopeful as a country in transition, it is critical because the country itself is facing grave threats from groups that want the transition not to succeed and, third, because Tunisia is presenting an alternative path to other in the region.”

Next to wide-ranging discussions, the day provided the occasion to present the awareness campaign on safety of journalists and end of impunity, organized by the National Union of Tunisian Journalists in partnership with Office of the High Commission for Human Rights and UNESCO. This campaign covers five provinces and targets journalists, human rights activists and civil society organizations. The campaign also provides a forum for discussion on the legislative framework and practices of safety of journalists in Tunisia. This campaign, linked to the IDEI, started on 26 October in Tunis and ended on 5 November. A video showing the first three workshops was screened during the opening session of the workshop.

This event was organized in the framework of the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the issue to end impunity, which calls upon stakeholders to promote a safe and enabling environment for journalists to perform their work independently and without undue interference.

The Day was organized by the National Union of Tunisian Journalists, the Civil Coalition for the Defense of Freedom of Expression, the Tunis Centre for Freedom of the Press, the Vigilance for Democracy and civic State association, and the Tunisian Human Rights League, in cooperation with Article 19 and Reporters without Borders. It was supported by of the Office of the High Commission for Human Rights and UNESCO.

Director-General urges investigation into the killing of Philippines journalist José Bernardo

News - Wed, 11/11/2015 - 10:56

“I condemn the killing of José Bernardo as an attack against freedom of expression and the rule of law,” said the Director-General. “I have full trust that the authorities will spare no effort in investigating this case and bringing the perpetrators to justice.”

José Bernardo was killed on Saturday 31 October in Quezon City, part of Metro Manila, capital of the Philippines. He was a reporter for local radio broadcasters DWBL and DWIZ and served as a public information officer of the Northern Police District Tri-Media Organization, a group of media workers who cover the Metro Manila police beat.

The Director-General of UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.” These statements are posted on a dedicated webpage, UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists.


Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray(at)unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12

UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”


Director-General calls for investigation into the killing of publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan

News - Mon, 09/11/2015 - 10:34

“I condemn the killing of Faisal Arefin Dipan,” the Director-General said. “I urge the authorities to investigate this case thoroughly and bring those responsible for it to justice.”

The head of the Jagriti Prokashoni publishing company was killed in his office in Dhaka by a group of unidentified men. He was the publisher of Bangladeshi writer and web journalist Avijit Roy, killed earlier this year.

The Director-General of UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.” These statements are posted on a dedicated webpage, UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists


Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray(at)unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12

UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”



Director-General condemns the murder of Syrian citizen journalists Ibrahim Abdel Qader and Fares Hammadi

News - Mon, 09/11/2015 - 10:20

“I condemn the killings of Ibrahim Abdel Qader and Fares Hammadi,” the Director-General said. “I call on the authorities to ensure swift justice for these crimes. We must do everything we can to protect journalists from the violence of extremists who are prepared to resort to murder to suppress people’s right to share information.”

Ibrahim Abdel Qader (20) was co-founder and Executive Director of Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, an online news portal by citizen journalists and human rights activists reporting on the city of Raqqa, Syria, which is controlled by violent extremists.

Fares Hammadi was Head of Production at Eye on the Homeland, a Syrian media collective.

The Director-General of UNESCO issues statements on the killing of media workers in line with Resolution 29 adopted by UNESCO Member States at the Organization’s General Conference of 1997, entitled “Condemnation of Violence against Journalists.” These statements are posted on a dedicated webpage, UNESCO condemns the killing of journalists.


Media contact: Sylvie Coudray, s.coudray(at)unesco.org, +33 (0)1 45 68 42 12

UNESCO is the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom. Article 1 of its Constitution requires the Organization to “further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms which are affirmed for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion, by the Charter of the United Nations.” To realize this the Organization is requested to “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image…”


To end impunity for crimes against journalists, UN moves towards putting resolutions into practice

News - Fri, 06/11/2015 - 15:48

The meeting started off by paying tribute to the writer and blogger Avijit Roy who was killed in February 2015 in Bangladesh and his wife Rafida Bonya Ahmed who was severely wounded during the attack. Ms Bonya Ahmed highlighted the necessity to end impunity for crimes against witters, bloggers and publishers, saying: “they used to attack in the dark, now the extent of impunity is so great that they attack us in the broad day light, in front of thousands of people.”

Next to the widow of Avijit Roy, the panel was composed of Professor Rosental Alves, Director of the Knight Centre for Journalism in the Americas at the University of Texas at Austin (USA), and UNESCO Chair holder in communication, who also moderated the session; Ambassador Catherine Boura, Permanent Representative of Greece to the UN; Ambassador Raimonda Murmokaité, Permanent Representative of Lithuania to the UN; Mr Edric Selous, Director, Rule of Law Unit, Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General;  Mr Veran Matic, Chair of Serbia's Commission for investigating killing of journalists; and Ms Delphine Halgand, Director of Washington Bureau, Reporters without Borders.

Ambassador Murmokaité of Lithuania put emphasis on the important role of Member States in implementing the international norms already in place. She noted that civil society and regional organizations also had a part to play in the implementation, calling on authorities and governments, and connected the safety of journalists and issue of impunity with the fight against extremism and radicalization.

Mr Selous from the UNSG’s Rule of Law Unit brought in the human rights perspective to the discussion underscoring that “the right to freedom of expression embodies the indivisibility and interdependence of all human rights”. He emphasised that fighting impunity for crimes committed against them is central to that safety. “A rule of law system needs the social accountability that free media provide through the dissemination of information. And a rule of law system also needs effective judicial accountability mechanisms to ensure that violations of the laws have a consequence and that perpetrators of crimes against journalists are brought to justice,” he concluded.

Rafida Bonya Ahmed stressed the alarming situation being faced by so many bloggers and publishers in her country. She called for a firm approach to combat ever growing problem of violence and extremism, and suggested the establishment of safe houses that can provide temporarily residence to journalists in danger as a concrete measure against this concerning trend. “I am pleading to the International community to pay attention”, she concluded. “These brave journalists, writers, bloggers, publishers love their country and want to make a difference in their own homeland.”

Serbia's Commission for investigating killing of journalists is the first such commission trying to resolve crimes against journalists, Mr Veran Matic explained. He noted his hopes that this could be a model to be replicated around the world. Ms Delphine Halgand from Reporters without Borders also pointed to the current lack of means of ensuring compliance with the norms. In order to empower the UN Plan of Action for the Safety of Journalists and the vital role of UNESCO as the United Nations agency with a mandate to promote freedom of expression and freedom of the press, she argued for the creation of the position of a Special Representative of the Secretary General for the safety of journalists with the main task of monitoring compliance and reporting to the UN Security Council where sanctions could be applied.

The commemoration of the IDEI also served as on occasion to present UNESCO’s Report “World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development - Special Digital Focus 2015”, which explores four major themes related to press freedom in the digital age: 1) Counting online hate speech; 2) Protecting of journalism sources; 3) The Role of internet intermediaries in fostering freedom online; and 4) The Safety of journalists.

The event was webcast on UN Web TV and a video of it can be viewed at: mms://stream.unesco.org/vod/021115_end_impunity_en.wmv

Information for this event along with all background material are accessible at the dedicated webpage for IDEI 2015: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/EndImpunity

Palestinian youth from Gaza and the west bank gain new media and information literacy skills

News - Fri, 06/11/2015 - 15:24

“This training tackles new and unique topics, particularly in terms of media work in the Gaza Strip,” says Noor Swirki, young member of the NET-MED Youth media Working Group and journalist at Community Media Center in Gaza. With excitement in her voice, she continues, “The concepts of media education, technology and information have never been tackled before, and I am particularly interested in the topic of verification of information.”

For Noor and the rest of the participants, the opportunity to participate in such a training was quite exceptional.

“Information is generally available and accessible but the methodology to dig for it was never part of my strategy as a journalist and a media employee,” says Noor.

The training, which gathered for the first time young journalists and social media activists from Gaza and West Bank organizations working on youth and media, focused on methods to locate, evaluate and effectively use information to ensure professional development and to make informed decisions as users and producer of information and media content. Throughout the different workshops,  light was shed on the essential role that information and media play in our everyday lives and on how these lie at the core of freedom of expression and information.

“Media education starts with the right to access, evaluate and understand information; then spreading and producing it,” says Mohammad Abualrob, Trainer and Assistant Professor of Online Media at Birzeit University in Ramallah. “The importance of digital and media education lies in orienting youth on the role of media and its influence on the public. The drive for media education is the ongoing role of bloggers, social media activists, and others who can affect public opinion.”

One of the key objectives of the NET-MED Youth project is to foster media information literacy, awareness of freedom of expression, and media production skills among young women and men. Through a series of workshops and activities, the projects works on building capacities of youth so they can critically and effectively engage with media and information providers, and they can strengthen their advocacy and monitoring efforts regarding national youth strategies and policies.

“Most of the young users and producers of electronic media tools are also the creators of media content. These youth are also consumers of digital media information,” says Reema Salem, NET-MED Youth Coordinator in Gaza. “Promoting media and information education is for us crucial because youth learn how to find and identify necessary information, where and how to obtain it, how to evaluate it critically and constructively, how to organize it, and how to use it in an ethical way.”

Through this workshop, like through others organized by NET-MED Youth, the value goes beyond training the initial number of participants. Each trainee becomes a strong link in a chain and takes upon themselves the role of imparting their acquired skills and knowledge to other youth members of their organizations.

“The most beautiful thing about this is that all my friends in Gaza are waiting for my return so I can hold a gathering session where I will convey to them what I have learnt in this training,” says Noor.

The Networks of Mediterranean Youth (NET-MED Youth) project is implemented by UNESCO and funded by the European Union. It aims at mainstreaming youth issues and priorities across national decision-making and policy implementation in eastern and western Mediterranean countries by building the capacities of youth and youth organizations and promoting their active engagement in the development and implementation of national policies and strategies on youth, ensuring that youth issues are adequately covered by national and regional media and by identifying workable models for improving youth access to employment and youth inclusion in different sectors.

To learn more about Networks of Mediterranean Youth (NET-MED Youth), visit: en.unesco.org/netmedyouth and follow us on: www.facebook.com/netmedyouth

Learn more about UNESCO’s  work on Media and Information Literacy, and the Global Alliance for Partnerships on Media and Information Literacy!

UNESCO abogará por la libertad en Internet y la “Universalidad de Internet” en el X Foro para la Gobernanza de Internet en João Pessoa

Noticias - Thu, 05/11/2015 - 15:21

Será para la UNESCO la oportunidad para lanzar 6 nuevas publicaciones de su Serie sobre la libertad en Internet y disparar la discusión sobre el tema a través de tres talleres acerca de cuestiones candentes como el equilibrio entre la transparencia y la privacidad, la mitigación de la incitación al odio en línea y la radicalización de la juventud. La delegación de la UNESCO participará además en más de 20 sesiones, incluidos eventos de alto nivel, sesiones principales y talleres en el IGF.

La delegación de la Organización para este X Foro estará encabezada por la Dra. Brito Lidia, Directora de la Oficina Regional de la UNESCO en Montevideo, e integrada por expertos tanto de la Sede y como de dicha Oficina Regional. La Dra. Brito se dirigirá a las altas autoridades del FGI el día 10 de noviembre próximo para presentar y defender el proyecto de concepto de la UNESCO de "Universalidad de Internet" y sus principios, abreviados en las iniciales R.O.A.M. (por su acrónimo en inglés): (i) basada Derechos Humanos (“Human-Rights-based”) (ii) abierta (“Open”), (iii) accesible a todos (“Accessible to all”), y (iv) alimentada por la participación de múltiples partes interesadas (“Multi-stakeholder participation”).

Habiéndose reconocido como un claro referente potencial sobre temas relacionados con Internet que son hoy una prioridad para la UNESCO, este concepto se presentará como una opción para su aprobación formal por parte de los Estados Miembros presentes durante la 38a Conferencia General de la Organización que está teniendo lugar en este mes en París.

Para la UNESCO será además la ocasión de lanzar también su nueva publicación "Claves para promover sociedades del conocimiento inclusivas”, así como 6 nuevas publicaciones de su Serie sobre la libertad en Internet: 1. Libertad de conexión para libertad de expresión; 2. Encuesta mundial sobre la privacidad en Internet y la libertad de expresión; 3. Fomento de la libertad en línea: el papel de los intermediarios de Internet; 4. La construcción de la seguridad digital en el periodismo; 5. La lucha contra la incitación al odio en línea; 6. Principios para gobernar Internet.

Al destacar la participación de múltiples partes interesadas como uno de sus principios para construir sociedades del conocimiento, la UNESCO considera el carácter multisectorial de FGI como el factor principal que permitirá el debate abierto en un ámbito de cooperación. La UNESCO invita a todos los participantes de diferentes sectores a aportar insumos y participar en las discusiones de su Foro Abierto y en los talleres que estará convocando en el marco del X FGI.

Los documentos de respaldo y discusión para los eventos de la UNESCO estarán disponibles en el siguiente enlace:

Descarga gratuita del folleto: haga clic aquí.

La UNESCO ha apoyado el Foro para la Gobernanza de Internet y ha contribuido a su trabajo desde su primera edición en Atenas en 2006. Los Estados Miembros de la UNESCO han expresado en repetidas ocasiones su apoyo a la importante labor del FGI. En los últimos nueve FGI, la UNESCO organizó y co-organizó talleres y Foros Abiertos para la promoción de la libertad de expresión y la privacidad en Internet, el multilingüismo en el ciberespacio, el contenido local, la preservación digital y muchas dimensiones más de nuestro trabajo relacionado con Internet.

La UNESCO ha contribuido en paralelo con el proceso de revisión de la CMSI en la Asamblea General de la ONU, y se basará en sus compromisos en el marco del FGI para un mayor involucramiento de los actores con este proceso.

UNESCO advocates Internet Freedom and Internet Universality at 10th Internet Governance Forum in João Pessoa

News - Wed, 04/11/2015 - 17:19

UNESCO will also launch 6 editions of its publications in the Internet Freedom Series and trigger discussion through three workshops on burning subjects in balancing transparency and privacy, mitigating online hate speech and youth radicalization. The UNESCO delegation will also be speaking at more than 20 engagements including high level events, main sessions and workshops at the IGF.

Led by Dr Brito Lidia, UNESCO Director for Montevideo Office, UNESCO is sending to the 10th IGF a joint team consisting colleagues from Headquarters and the regional office. Dr Brito will address the High Level Leaders Meeting of the IGF on 10 November to advocate the draft UNESCO concept “Internet Universality” and its R.O.A.M principles: (i) that the Internet is human Rights-based (ii) Open, (iii) Accessible to all, and (iv) nurtured by Multi-stakeholder participation (acronym R.O.A.M. principles).

Being recognized as potentially being UNESCO’s own clear identifier for various fields of Internet related issues with UNESCO concerns, this concept has been therefore proposed as an option for formal adoption at Organization’s 38 General Conference in this month.

UNESCO will take the occasion to launch its new publication “Keystones to Foster Inclusive Knowledge Societies”, plus 6 editions in the Internet Freedom Series: 1. Freedom of connection, freedom of expression; 2. Global survey on Internet privacy and freedom of expression; 3. Fostering freedom online: the role of Internet intermediaries; 4. Building digital safety for journalism; 5. Countering online hate speech; 6. Principles for governing the Internet. (hyperlinks)

Highlighting the participation of multi-stakeholders as one of its principles to build knowledge societies, UNESCO considers IGF’s multistakeholder character to be the most important factor to enable wide-ranging discussions in a collaborative atmosphere. UNESCO welcomes participants from different sectors to bring inputs and discussions to UNESCO’s Open Forum and workshops it will convene in the forthcoming 10th IGF.

The program and background documents for these UNESCO events are available at the link below:

  • Balancing privacy and transparency: to protect online freedom of expression and freedom of information
    Tuesday 10 November, 11:00-12:00, Workshop room 7
  • Launching UNESCO Internet Freedom Series Publications
    Thursday 12 November, 9:00-9:30, Workshop room 2
  • Understanding and Mitigating Online Hate Speech and Youth Radicalisation
    Thursday 12 November, 16:00-17:30, Workshop room 9
  • UNESCO Open Forum: Keystone to Foster Inclusive Knowledge Societies: Launching UNESCO’s Comprehensive Study on the Internet
    Friday 13 November, 12:00-13:00, Workshop room 3

The leaflet for free download: please click here.

UNESCO has supported the Internet Governance Forum and has contributed to its work since the first IGF in Athens in 2006. UNESCO’s Member States have repeatedly expressed support for the important work of the IGF.  In the past nine IGFs, UNESCO organized and co-organized workshops and Open Fora on promoting freedom of expression and privacy on the Internet, multilingualism in cyberspace, local content, digital preservation and many more dimensions of our Internet-related work. 

UNESCO in parallel has been contributing to the WSIS Review process at the UN General Assembly, and will draw on its engagements at the IGF in further engagement with this process.

La Conférence générale de l’UNESCO sous le signe des Objectifs de 2030

Actualités - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 19:05

Au cours de cette session, l’UNESCO accueillera un nombre inédit de chefs d’Etat et de gouvernement venus célébrer le 70e anniversaire de l’Organisation lors du Forum des dirigeants.

La Conférence générale de l’UNESCO, qui réunit les 195 Etats membres, a été marquée par l’admission de Montserrat comme 10e Membre associé de l’UNESCO ainsi que par la visite de Haakon, le Prince de Norvège, qui a rappelé que le rôle et le mandat de l’UNESCO sont aussi importants aujourd’hui qu’ils l’étaient il y a 70 ans.

« Aujourd’hui, le monde est confronté à la plus grave crise de réfugiés depuis la Seconde guerre mondiale. Soixante millions de personnes fuient la guerre et le conflit, nous avons une responsabilité commune d’agir », a déclaré le Prince. « Aujourd’hui, comme il y a 70 ans, l’UNESCO est un lieu tout indiqué pour unir et renforcer nos efforts », a déclaré le Prince.

Le Président sortant de la Conférence générale, Hao Ping, Vice-ministre chinois de l’éducation, a réitéré l’engagement de l’UNESCO à atteindre les nouveaux Objectifs de développement durable. Il a évoqué « Le rôle irremplaçable de l’UNESCO dans la construction du dialogue et de la paix […] Le dialogue sur un pied d’égalité entre tous les pays et les civilisations est plus important que jamais », a-t-il déclaré, dans la mesure où « le monde actuel traverse une période de changement et de réorganisation ».

Mohamed Sameh Amr, Président du Conseil exécutif de l’UNESCO et Ambassadeur et Délégué permanent de l’Egypte auprès de l’Organisation, a fait écho à cet engagement en faveur des ODD et évoqué « les profondes transformations non seulement dans le domaine social mais dans tous les domaines des activités et du mandat de l’Organisation ». A propos du rôle de l’UNESCO dans le domaine de l’éducation, de la science, de la culture et de la communication, le Président a mis l’accent sur l’importance du travail de l’UNESCO dans la lutte contre l’extrémisme « que nous devons traiter à la racine, notamment à travers l’éducation ».

La Directrice générale de l’UNESCO, Irina Bokova, a proclamé un engagement renouvelé aux principes fondateurs de l’institution, 70 ans après sa création.  « L’UNESCO est née du principe que la paix et le développement, pour être durables, doivent s’ancrer profondément dans les cœurs et dans l’esprit des peuples. Cette conviction n’a pas changé et reste notre boussole, dans les mutations du monde actuel ».

Les représentants des Etats membres ont achevé leurs travaux en séance plénière par l’élection de Stanley Mutumba Simataa, vice-ministre de l’information et de la communication de Namibie, pour présider la 38e session de la Conférence générale de l’UNESCO.

« Dans les périodes sombres, l’UNESCO est sollicitée pour apporter une vision et un espoir aux peuples du monde à travers l’éducation, notamment l’éducation à la paix, la tolérance et la démocratie et aux droits de l’homme ; à travers les sciences, notamment grâce à la diffusion des connaissances scientifiques qui permettent d’améliorer les réponses aux changements climatiques sans précédent qui sont à l’œuvre aujourd’hui ; à travers la culture en jetant des ponts entre les différentes cultures, en préservant et en promouvant le patrimoine culturel et la créativité et à travers la communication et l’information, grâce à la libre circulation de l’information et des idées », a déclaré le Président Simataa dans son premier discours devant la Conférence générale. « Il ne fait aucun doute que l’UNESCO demeure une lueur d’espoir dans un monde marqué par l’intolérance et le désespoir ».


Les journalistes souhaitant couvrir la Conférence générale doivent s’enregistrer en ligne ici.

Une série d’événements parallèles est prévue pendant la Conférence générale ainsi qu’un journal en ligne.

La Conferencia General de la UNESCO se inicia marcada por los Objetivos de Desarrollo para 2030

Noticias - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 18:50

Durante la reunión, que terminará el 18 de noviembre, la UNESCO recibirá a numerosos jefes de Estado y de gobierno, que acudirán para celebrar el 70ª aniversario de la Organización y un Foro de Líderes.

La sesión de la mañana de la Conferencia General, que reúne a los 195 Estados Miembros, estuvo marcada por la admisión de Monserrat como 10º Miembro Asociado de la UNESCO. Otro momento destacado fue la visita de Haakon, príncipe heredero de Noruega, que destacó que el papel y el mandato de la UNESCO son hoy tan importantes como hace 70 años.

“El mundo hace frente hoy a la mayor crisis de refugiados desde la Segunda Guerra Mundial. Hay sesenta millones de personas huyendo de guerras y conflictos, tenemos la responsabilidad compartida de actuar”, dijo el príncipe Haakon. “Hoy como hace 70 años, la UNESCO detenta una posición excelente para aunar esfuerzos y fortalecerlos”, añadió.

El presidente saliente de la Conferencia General, Hao Ping, viceministro de educación de China, reiteró el compromiso de la UNESCO de alcanzar los nuevos Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible y mencionó “el papel irremplazable de la UNESCO en la construcción del diálogo y de la paz […] El diálogo en pie de igualdad entre todos los países y civilizaciones es más importante que nunca”, aseguró, ya que “el mundo actual está pasando por un periodo de cambio y reorganización”.

Mohamed Sameh Amr, presidente del Consejo Ejecutivo de la UNESCO y embajador delegado permanente de Egipto en la Organización, se hizo eco de esta afirmación y habló de las “profundas transformaciones, no solo en términos sociales, sino también en todas las áreas de actividad y en el mandato de la Organización. Amr pasó revista al papel de la UNESCO en el ámbito de la educación, las ciencias, la cultura y la comunicación e hizo especial hincapié en la importancia de la labor de la UNESCO en la lucha contra el flagelo del extremismo, “que debemos cortar de raíz, en particular mediante la educación”.

La Directora General de la UNESCO, Irina Bokova, proclamó su compromiso renovado con los principios fundadores de la institución setenta años después de su creación: “La UNESCO nació de la idea de que, para ser duraderos, la paz y el desarrollo deben estar profundamente arraigados en los corazones y las mentes de los pueblos. Esta convicción permanece intacta y debe guiarnos en un mundo en mutación”, dijo.

Por la tarde, los delegados eligieron a Stanley Mutumba Simataa, viceministro de información y tecnología de la comunicación de Namibia, presidente de la 38ª reunión de la Conferencia General.

“En estos tiempos difíciles, la UNESCO debe llevar perspectivas y esperanza a los pueblos del mundo a través de la educación, la tolerancia, la democracia y los derechos humanos, a través de las ciencias –por ejemplo mediante la diseminación del conocimiento científico para mejorar la respuesta a los cambios medioambientales–, a través de la cultura –construyendo puentes entre culturas, salvaguardando y promoviendo el patrimonio cultural y la creatividad– y mediante la comunicación y la información –facilitando la libre circulación de la información y las ideas”, dijo el presidente tras su elección. “No cabe duda de que la UNESCO sigue siendo un faro de esperanza en un mundo manchado de intolerancia y desesperanza”.


Los periodistas que deseen cubrir la Conferencia General deben acreditarse en línea aquíhttps://en.unesco.org/general-conference/38th-gc-press-registration

Consulte la lista de eventos paralelos s y el boletín diario de la Conferencia General.

The road to 2030 to take shape at UNESCO’s General Conference

News - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 18:44

During its session, which will end on 18 November, UNESCO will host an unprecedented number of heads of State and Government to celebrate the 70th anniversary in a Leaders’ Forum.

As it opened this morning, the General Conference of UNESCO, which brings together its 195 Member States, was marked by the admission to the Organization of Montserrat as its 10th Associate Member. Another notable event was the visit of Haakon, the Crown Prince of Norway, who stressed that UNESCO’s role and mandate were as important today as they were 70 years ago.

“Today the world is facing the largest refugee crisis since World War Two. Sixty million people are fleeing from war and conflict, we share a joint responsibility to act,” said the Prince. “Today as it was 70 years ago, UNESCO is in an excellent position to unite and strengthen our efforts,” said the Prince.

The outgoing President of the General Conference, Hao Ping, Vice Minister of Education of China, reiterated UNESCO’s commitment to achieve the objectives of the new SDGs. He spoke of “UNESCO’s irreplaceable role in dialogue and peace building […] Dialogue on an equal footing between all countries and civilizations is more important than ever,” he said, as “the current world is going through a period of change and reorganization.”

Mohamed Sameh Amr, the Chairperson of UNESCO’s Executive Board, who is also the Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of Egypt to the Organization, echoed the President’s strong commitment to the SDGs and spoke of “profound transformations not only in social terms, but also in all areas of the Organization’s activities and mandate.” Reviewing UNESCO’s role in education, science, culture and communication, the Chairperson particularly emphasized the importance of UNESCO’s work in fighting the scourge of extremism, “which we must tackle at its root, notably through education.”

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, proclaimed a renewed commitment to the founding principles of the institution 70 years after its creation. “UNESCO is born of the idea that if peace and development are to last, they must be deeply rooted in the hearts and minds of peoples. This conviction remains unchanged and is our compass in today’s changing world,” she said.

As the representatives of Member States resumed their work in plenary session in the early afternoon, they elected Stanley Mutumba Simataa, Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Technology of Namibia, to preside over the 38th session of the General Conference of UNESCO.

“In time of despair, UNESCO is called upon to bring foresight and hope to the peoples of the world through education, including education for peace, tolerance, democracy and human rights, through the sciences, notably with the development of dissemination of scientific knowledge to improve responses to unprecedented environmental changes now occurring, through culture by building bridges amongst different cultures, safeguarding and promoting cultural heritage and creativity, and through communication and information, through the free flow of information and ideas,” said President Simataa in his first comments to the General Conference. “There is no doubt UNESCO remains a beacon of hope in a world littered with deep-seated intolerance and despair.”           


Journalists wishing to cover the General Conference should register online here.

Please check the side-events of the General Conference and e-journal for more useful information.

El príncipe heredero de Noruega visita la UNESCO y destaca la importancia de la Organización en su 70º aniversario

Noticias - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 18:21

“El papel y el mandato de la UNESCO siguen siendo tan importantes como hace 70 años. La educación, la ciencia, la cultura, la comunicación y la información resultan esenciales en un mundo donde las personas están cada vez más interconectadas y dependen cada vez más las unas de las otras”, declaró.

El príncipe Haakon felicitó a la UNESCO por su rol primordial en la promoción del acceso a una educación universal de calidad; el desarrollo de medios de comunicación libres, independientes y plurales; y la protección del patrimonio y la diversidad cultural en un mundo cambiante y cada vez más complejo.

El príncipe heredero destacó la centralidad de la educación, la protección de la libertad de expresión y la conservación del patrimonio cultural a la hora de lograr un desarrollo inclusivo, equitativo y sostenible y de alcanzar los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible.

Antes, durante la mañana, el príncipe mantuvo una serie de reuniones con el sector de Cultura de la Organización acerca de la necesidad de proteger el patrimonio cultural y apoyar la campaña de la UNESCO #Unite4Heritage y con el sector de Educación sobre temas relacionados con el desarrollo sostenible y una ciudadanía global.

El príncipe Haakon asistió también a un almuerzo con la Directora General de la UNESCO, Irina Bokova, durante el que apoyó la Declaración sobre Escuelas Seguras. Este texto brinda a los Estados la oportunidad de comprometerse con la protección de la educación en situaciones de conflicto armado.

Lors de sa visite à l’UNESCO, le prince héritier de Norvège souligne l’importance de l’Organisation à l’occasion de son 70e anniversaire

Actualités - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 18:17

« Le rôle et le mandat de l'UNESCO sont aussi importants aujourd'hui qu'il y a 70 ans. L'éducation, la science, la culture, la communication et l'information sont essentiels dans un monde où les gens sont de plus en plus interconnectés et dépendants les uns des autres », a-t-il déclaré.

Le prince Haakon a félicité l'UNESCO pour son rôle de premier plan dans la promotion de l'accès à une éducation de qualité pour tous; la promotion de médias libres, indépendants et pluriels; la protection du patrimoine et la diversité culturelle dans un monde en évolution rapide et de plus en plus complexe.

Le prince héritier a encore souligné le rôle clé de l'éducation, de la liberté d'expression et du patrimoine culturel pour assurer un développement inclusif, équitable et durable et la réalisation des Objectifs de développement durable.

Plus tôt dans la matinée, il s’est entretenu avec des représentants du secteur de la culture de l'Organisation sur la nécessité de protéger le patrimoine culturel et sur la campagne de l'UNESCO #Unite4Heritage. Il a aussi rencontré des représentants du secteur de l'éducation pour évoquer l'importance de l'éducation pour le développement durable et la citoyenneté mondiale.

Le prince Haakon a également pris part à un déjeuner avec la Directrice générale de l'UNESCO, Irina Bokova, au cours duquel il a soutenu la Déclaration sur la sécurité dans les écoles. La Déclaration permet aux États de s’engager dans la protection de l'éducation en cas de conflit armé.

International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists celebrated in London

News - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 15:49

UNESCO Deputy Director-General Getachew Engida first presented UNESCO’s latest data and analysis about journalists’ safety and impunity from UNESCO’s World Trends in Freedom of Expression and Media Development: Special Digital Focus 2015.

Many speakers emphasised the hostile and repressive environment for journalists stemming from the misuse by governments of anti-terrorism and state security laws, which make journalists vulnerable to judicial abuse and violence, and often deprives them of legal redress for crimes committed against them by state or non-state actors.

Kevin Sutcliffe, Head of News Programmes (EU) for Vice News, said it was now ‘open season’ for attacks and abuses against journalists operating in difficult or dangerous environments, so it was  much harder to ‘get the story out’ to Vice’s mass online audiences. Alaa Bayoumi, a senior editor at Al Jazeera English, said the harsh clampdown on the media in many Middle Eastern states meant that many cases of killings and imprisonment of journalists go unreported. Freelance journalist Emma Beals, who has reported on the war in Syria for the past three years, spoke graphically about the physical dangers of her work and her shock at the deaths of many colleagues. She faces those risks, she said, ‘so that people cannot say they didn’t know what was happening’ in the Syrian conflict.

Addressing the need for concerted actions in response to the failures of law and justice systems in many countries, Peter Greste, the Al Jazeera English journalist who was jailed for a year in Egypt until his deportation in February, appealed for ‘more unity of purpose’ among journalists and media organisations. 

The key role played by international human rights institutions and courts in the fight against impunity was underlined by Joanna Evans, a lawyer from the European Rights Advocacy Centre in London. Wider political efforts were also essential, she said, but the success of work to take a large number of impunity cases to  international courts, including the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, had exposed systemic abuses in the law-enforcement and justice systems of a number of states, and had helped to set international human rights standards.

Rob Fenn, head of human rights at the UK Foreign Office, condemned the rise of impunity in repressive states and underlined the necessity to gather evidence of serious human rights abuses in conflicts such as the war in Syria. He cited a Statement issued on 2 November by the Foreign Office minister Baroness Anelay, which said: ‘A free media plays a vital role in a functioning democracy. We mark today to highlight why we cannot let those who seek to undermine it do so, and that this impunity must end’.

The Crown Prince of Norway pays visit to UNESCO stressing the importance of the Organization on its 70th anniversary

News - Tue, 03/11/2015 - 15:30

“UNESCO’s role and mandate is as important today as it was 70 years ago. Education, science, culture, communication and information are all essential in a world where people are increasingly interconnected and dependent on each other,” he declared.

Prince Haakon commended UNESCO for its leading role in promoting access to quality education for all; in fostering free, independent and pluralistic media; and in protecting cultural heritage and cultural diversity in a rapidly changing and increasingly complex world.

The Crown Prince highlighted the centrality of education, safeguarding freedom of expression and preserving cultural heritage to ensure inclusive, equitable and sustainable development and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

Earlier in the morning, he held meetings with representatives of the Organization’s Culture sector on the need to protect cultural heritage and UNESCO’s campaign #Unite4Heritage. He also met with representatives from the Education sector on the importance of education for sustainable development and global citizenship.

Prince Haakon also attended a lunchtime event with UNESCO’s Director-General, Irina Bokova, to endorse the Safe Schools Declaration. The Declaration provides States with the opportunity to commit support for education in situations of armed conflict.


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