Date(s) - 25/01/2017
08:00 - 14:00
Press Club Brussels Europe
Background: Towards a balanced narrative on migration in the Mediterranean
Brussels, 25 January 2017
Press Club, Rue Froissart 95
The communication on migration has increasingly become a priority topic being incorporated in migration related initiatives implemented by the European Commission and addressed by other international migration actors, striving towards a balanced narrative on migration and reaping its benefits. Indeed, the current discourse which surrounds migration has taken a dramatically negative turn in the last decade both within Europe and internationally. This demands a review on how information pertaining to migration is gathered, shared and disseminated amongst different actors, which greatly impacts on both policy and public perception.
‘Towards a balanced narrative on migration in the Mediterranean’ will be the first event of this kind organised under the framework of the EUROMED Migration IV (EMM4), a programme funded by the European Union and led by the EU Commission’s Directorate General for Neighborhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR). The event, to be held on the 25 January 2017 in Brussels under the auspice of the Maltese EU Presidency, will address the challenge, opportunity and necessity to jointly work towards a more balanced, evidence-based and forward-looking narrative on migration in the Mediterranean. It will bring together policy makers, media managers and journalists as well as migration and communication experts.
The event will be shaped around a high-level debate with an audience of around 100 policy makers and experts, followed by three parallel thematic sessions.
The high-level debate will focus on the importance of the communication between elected political representatives and institutions at regional, national and the media as a crucial interface in between policymakers and public opinion. The debate will be informed by a preceding presentation of the key findings and recommendations of the study How do media on both sides of the Mediterranean report on migration? in 17 countries on both sides of the Mediterranean, launched under the framework of the EMM4 programme.
During the event, the first edition of the Euro-Mediterranean Migration Media Award will be announced. The award is a concrete initiative which aims to encourage qualitative and evidence-based journalism on migration. It is a joint activity led by the EMM4 programme, the EU-funded Open Media Hub (OMH) project, the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Malta.
The event will conclude with three parallel thematic sessions, bringing together practitioners and experts tackling axes such as: – Balancing the narrative on migration: the role of the media and policy-makers; – Migration in the urban context and local discourse: the session will seek to disentangle the role of local authorities in helping to shape a constructive, evidence-based migration discourse and a link to global initiatives such as the Sustainable Development Goals and New Urban Agenda. It will take stock of the preliminary results of the Mediterranean City-to-City Migration (MC2CM) project, funded by DG Near; and – Sharing and disseminating data and information via digital platforms to satisfy the information needs of the media, policy-makers and other stakeholders.
Draft Agenda: Towards a balanced narrative on migration in the Mediterranean
8.00 – 8.45
8.45 – 9.15
Welcome Coffee & Registration
Keynote address by Hon. George W. Vella, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Malta – Official announcement of Migration Media Award
9.15 – 9.30
‘How do media on both sides of the Mediterranean report on migration?’ Presentation of the main findings and recommendations of the EUROMED Migration IV (EMM4) study commissioned to the Ethical Journalism Network (EJN) – Aidan White, Ethical Journalism Network (EJN), Director and CEO
9.30 – 10.30 High-level debate: Towards a balanced narrative on migration: what role for policy-makers and the media? Moderated debate between policy-makers and media representatives Moderator: Shada Islam, Friends of Europe Panellists: – Hon. George W. Vella, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Malta – High-level Representative, European Commission DG NEAR – Michael Spindelegger, ICMPD Director General – Magda Abu-Fadil, Veteran journalist, Blogger, Director of Media Unlimited in Lebanon – Jean Paul Marthoz, Journalist, Le Soir columnist, Professor of International Journalism, Université Catholique de Louvain
10.30 – 11.00
Networking Coffee Break (for participants)
Parallel Press Briefing (for media representatives) Media representatives will be briefed on the findings and recommendations of the study ‘How do media on both sides of the Mediterranean report on migration?’ covering 17 countries and the specific role of the media in telling the migration story. The migration media award will also be briefly presented during the press briefing. Moderator: Sören Bauer, Communication Expert, EMM4
Panellists: – Hon. George W. Vella, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Malta – High-level Representative, European Commission DG NEAR – Michael Spindelegger, ICMPD Director General – Aidan White, Ethical Journalism Network
Parallel Breakout Sessions: Discussion and stakeholder consultation
Interested participants should indicate their preferred session in the registration form
11.00 – 12.30 Session 1. Balancing the narrative on migration: the role of the media and policymakers a. Discussion of the findings & recommendations of the study ‘How do media on both sides of the Mediterranean report on migration?’ b. Development of recommendations for the way forward
11.00 – 12.30 Session 2. Changing the local discourse on migration a. Presentation of preliminary findings from the EU-funded project Mediterranean City to City Migration (MC2CM) b. Brainstorming session on the local dimension of communications on migration
11.00 – 12.30 Session 3. Information needs required for better migration reporting and policymaking: the role of digital information portals a. Presentation of EMM4 findings of a benchmarking analysis of existing migration information portals b. Presentation of the EMM4 approach in developing the interactive map on migration (i-Map), a digital online platform.
12.30 – 13.30 Networking lunch