From Media and Information Literate (MIL) Cities to MIL Citizens
Let us get ready to celebrate Global MIL Week 2019. Last year we celebrated Global MIL Week calling for cities to find innovative ways to promote MIL learning in city spaces and activities. This year, we will continue to focus on the cities and citizens* in the digital age under the theme, MIL Citizens: Informed, Engaged, Empowered.
MIL provides citizens with key competencies for life-long learning, work, and in all aspects of life. Citizens equipped with MIL competencies are informed, engaged, and empowered. They can capitalize on the opportunities provided by information, technology, and media. They understand the dangers of disinformation, as well as the spiral of hatred and exclusion. Empowering all citizens, including youth, the elderly, and marginalized groups with MIL competencies let more voices be heard; stirs freedoms, mutual understanding and peace.
While Global MIL Week 2019 will be celebrated from 24 to 31 October, its Feature Events (the 9th MIL and Intercultural Dialogue [MILID] Conference and Youth Agenda Forum) will be held from 24 to 26 September in Gothenburg, Sweden to benefit from the synergies with the 2019 Gothenburg Book Fair. The Book Fair is the second largest of its kind in Europe. County Council Region Västra Götaland, Sweden, the University of Gothenburg, and the Swedish National Commission for UNESCO host both feature events of Global MIL Week.
The official website of Global MIL Week 2019 has been launched. The permanent link is https://en.unesco.org/commemorations/globalmilweek. Information related to various components of Global MIL Week 2019, ways to celebrate the Week, registration of your local events in celebration of the Week, its design concept, agenda, organizing committees and partners can be accessed on the website.
The website is currently in English and French, and will be available in other languages.
UNESCO leads the Global MIL Week 2019 in partnership with the UNESCO-UNAOC MIL and Intercultural Dialogue (MILID) University Network, the UNESCO-led Global Alliance for Partnerships on MIL (GAPMIL), the International Federation of Library Associations, Twitter, the International Association of School Libraries, and many others.
The Feature Conference serves as an arena for multi-stakeholder cooperation, which enables constructive dialogue and development, and promotes intercultural understanding, and the exchange of best practices, ideas, and experiences. This is the vision of Feature Conference and all Global MIL Week celebrations. UNESCO’s work in the field of MIL and Global MIL Week 2019 aims to address the disparities in information and engagement, inspiring us to move forward towards the SDGs.
Global MIL Week and its Feature Events are for everyone – civil society, local government officials, academics, and other city actors alike. Join us at the Feature Events as speakers or participants, come and set up an exhibition of your work, and celebrate with us through your local events online or offline.
Global MIL Week, commemorated annually, is the capstone for MIL initiatives throughout the year aimed to push for progress towards MIL for All.
UNESCO and partners are calling stakeholders all over the world to promote Global MIL Week. Together with its Feature Events (MILID Conference and Youth Agenda Forum), Global MIL Week calls for local events around the world to promote MIL connections across borders, disciplines, sectors, and professions.
*By citizens, we mean metaphors of citizenship rather than a strictly legal category – thus including all peoples.