Press release

UNESCO to launch updated media and information literacy curriculum with the support of Republic of Serbia during online event starting 23 April

20/04/2021

UNESCO will launch its updated curriculum on media and information literacy, Think critically, Click Wisely: Media and Information Literate Citizens, during an event co-hosted with the Republic of Serbia and international partners. Ana Brnabić, Prime Minister of the Republic of Serbia will join European Commission Vice President Vera Jourova, UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, and other high-level panelists in two online debates during the event (23 through 29 April), designed to address the urgent need to reinforce media and information literacy, in the face of rising disinformation and mistrust exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new edition of UNESCO’s educational framework for media and information literacy takes on board recent developments in the social and digital domains, including artificial intelligence, privacy issues, the increasing importance of social competencies such as digital citizenship, education for sustainable development, cultural literacy and intercultural understanding, science literacy and the exponential rise in disinformation and online hate speech. The new edition reflects changes affecting all media, updating UNESCO’s first international publication on media and information literacy, released in 2011.

Co-organized by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Serbia and UNESCO with the support of the European Commission and Sweden, the event will feature discussions on promoting public awareness of the need to be critical when seeking to assess and understand the mass of information disseminated by an ever-growing number of sources online and offline.

Individuals and content providers face the choice of amplifying or countering inaccurate and misleading content, be it disinformation, misinformation, mal-information, conspiracy theories or hate speech. With 70% of the world’s youth now online, the need to make the difference between information and disinformation is becoming more pressing.

Media and Information Literacy (MIL) received a vital push during UNESCO’s General Conference in 2019, when 193 countries proclaimed International MIL Week. On 25 March 2021, the UN General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/75/267, further cementing the urgency to ensure MIL for all. The launch of the latest edition of the Curriculum is a significant step forward in accelerating the strengthening of MIL development globally.

Following the television-style discussions on Friday 23 April (3 to 4.15 pm CET), the Republic of Serbia and UNESCO will host four international webinars presenting various case studies by MIL experts and practitioners. Two successive sessions will be held on 27 and 29 April (3pm to 5pm ).