What role should the media play in countries in crisis?
Health crises,natural disastersorconflicts… more than ever, information becomes crucialin times ofcrisis.
As countries face public health outbreaks, natural disasters and conflicts, information is becoming more crucial than ever before in times of crisis. The widely available data with which we are now bombarded can either alleviate or accentuate a crisis. This is because keeping people informed has turned into a vital concern as it has become increasingly difficult, even impossible, to produce information in crisis-stricken areas. In a number of countries, such as Iraq, Libya and Yemen, journalists and media outlets regularly see their movements impeded, receive threats and risk their lives as they carry out their work.
This situation has led CFI, the French media cooperation agency, in collaboration with the French Institute for Research and Studies in the Mediterranean and the Middle East (
IReMMO) and with the support of the Crisis and Support Centre of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, to propose the ILYM project.
Over the course of six months this project will enable the participants to conduct an in-depth analysis of the role and attitude of the media during the current crises in Yemen, Libya and Iraq, through exchanges between information practitioners (12 journalists working in these three countries) and external observers (journalists and researchers).
Maintaining an open, calm dialogue during the crises
During the four ILYM weeks that will be held in Paris between November 2015 and spring 2016, journalists and researchers will attempt to come up with a joint response to the following question:
How can media organisations and journalists help to calm the current crises and to maintain open dialogue and public debate?
CFI has decided to bring together the perspectives of journalists from three Arab countries, which are undergoing deep and unfortunately long-lasting crises, on the subject of the conditions under which they have to carry out their profession and the role that the media should play during these three crises.
ILYM provides them with an opportunity to meet their French counterparts in order to inform them about the key issues surrounding the crises, with a view to facilitating improved understanding on the part of the public and the French media.