Intercultural skills for young journalists

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Project presentation

Under this project, the MILID University Network organised the first MILID Week in May 2012 in Barcelona. The MILID Week has become an integral part of this activity, enriched by the Network's diversity of representation of twelve universities, NGOs, and other civil society actors. The second MILID week was held in Cairo on 23-25 April 2013 - in collaboration with the University of Cairo.
Online course on MIL and intercultural dialogue for teachers and policy makers was developed and launched by the MILID Network. Both courses are based on the MIL Curriculum for Teachers and FOE Toolkit published by UNESCO.
A regional workshop held in Cairo on 13-17 January 2013 and trained 65 young journalists/ information specialists/researchers within media organisations and citizens' media groups. The workshop was organised by the University of Cairo and the UNESCO/UNAOC MILID Network.
A publication on Media and Information Literacy Policy and Strategy Guidelines: Enabling Intercultural Dialogue was issued, in part helping towards building multiple intercultural competencies for media organisations into their editorial policy guidelines to facilitate a culturally diverse reportorial performance that takes into account young people. As part of that process, a compendium of new specialised syllabi was launched at the 3rd World Journalism Education Congress (WJEC-3) on 5 July in Mechelen, Belgium. The compendium has a syllabus on Intercultural Journalism, thereby helping to contribute towards the realisation of this project, particularly in terms of linking the teaching of journalism to issues of cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue.
Setting up an international network to promote intercultural dialogue and further capacity development among them is underway. The International Congress on MIL and Intercultural Dialogue, Global Forum on Partnerships for MIL, incorporating the Pan-African MIL and Intercultural Dialogue Conference was held in Nigeria (16-28 June 2013).

Media and Information Literacy Policy and Strategy Guidelines: Enabling Intercultural Dialogue

Led by the UNESCO’s Communication and Information Sector, the project “Intercultural skills for youth journalist” responds to the objective of promoting media and information literacy (MIL) as a tool for intercultural dialogue and understanding. The Media Information Literacy and Intercultural Dialogue (MILID) is a basis for enhancing access to information and knowledge, freedom of expression, gender equality, and a high standard of education in an intercultural framework. Through this project, young journalists, information specialists and researchers have been equipped with intercultural skills that have enabled them to understand the functions of media and other information providers in society across a variety of media formats, including those of the Internet. They now have a critical understanding of the practise of journalism and the dissemination of information in a way that promotes diversity and pluralism and dialogue.
With regard to these objectives, attention was paid to events that fostered greater awareness of and advocacy for Media Information Literacy (MIL) and intercultural dialogue. Four Media Information Literacy and Intercultural (MILID) Weeks have been organized since 2012. The 2014 MILID Week was implemented in Philadelphia (The U.S.A. of America) in June 2015. It was attended by over one hundred and fifty scholars, educators and participants from more than twenty countries, who discussed and shared experiences on how media and information literate citizens foster intercultural dialogue. The projects also involved cooperation among universities, training institutions, media organizations and NGOs on MIL related issues. The MILID University Network is an illustration of this collaboration spirit. The MILID University Network is a structure consisted of universities from Spain, Egypt, Jamaica, Brazil, United States, China, Australia and Morocco.
The set-up of an international network of young journalists and researched is also part of the project and was launched by the MILID Network. Over twenty universities and other teacher training institutions collaborated to develop their intercultural capabilities within the context of MIL. As such, this network will act as an observatory on the positive role of MIL on the use media and on the promotion of intercultural dialogue.
Efforts targeted also capacity building for the young researchers and journalists throughout events such as the ‘Global Forum for Partnership on MIL, incorporating the International Conference on MIL and Intercultural Dialogue’ from 26 to 28 June 2013 in Abuja, where capacity of 50 young journalists and trainers was enhanced through participative workshops. The development of internationally relevant online courses on MIL and intercultural dialogue is also a component of the project. Launched by the MILID Network, over four hundred people applied, being eight times the targeted numbers, which attests to the need for such courses. Over eighty people pursued the courses, half of which are women. A regional workshop held in Cairo (Egypt) on 13-17 January 2013 served also to make people knowledgeable about these courses. During the workshop, at least fifty young researchers and journalists as well as ten master trainers were trained MIL and intercultural dialogue. In addition, the event was much covered in the media.
The interface for the online courses and multimedia tool are available through the Peace and Dialogue E-portal. It is also sustained through cooperation with the Queensland University of Technology and the Athabasca University.
Ultimately, the publication “Media and Information Literacy Policy and Strategy Guidelines: Enabling Intercultural Dialogue” was issued within the project. The document offers guidelines all actors involved in information systems and media to promote communication practices that are sensitive to cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue.