Building resilience to the misuse of the information in democratic societies

Building resilience to overcome vulnerabilities generated by the misuse of the information in democratic societies

Avoin yhteiskunta ry and Faktabaari EDBU project were invited to the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) annual the Human Dimension Implementation Meeting (HDIM) . Kari Kivinen reports on his participation while his presentation is co-published at Faktabaari EDU blog

In general, ODIHR provides support, assistance, and expertise to participating States and civil society to promote democracy, rule of law, human rights and tolerance and non-discrimination. The Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (first semester 2019) and the current Finnish Presidency decided to set among their priorities monitoring of possible threats to democratic processes to enhance resilience and counter hybrid threats. Attention was paid to institutional and societal strengths in the face of these challenges to democratic societies. Through education, an increase of media literacy, and awareness-raising campaigns, including at the local level, individuals, and especially vulnerable groups such as young people learn to identify defective or fabricated information, strengthen their civic trust and build their resilience.

At the same time, it strengthens the resilience of our societies as a whole to such threats. Romanian and Finnish presidencies organized a side event on the 17.9.2019 about “Building resilience to overcome vulnerabilities generated by the misuse of the information in democratic societies”. I was invited to give a short talk about the collaboration project between Finnish Faktabaari and the French-Finnish school of Helsinki. The event was moderated by Rauno Merisaari, Finnish Ambassador for Human Rights and Democracy. The Side Event invitation text gave scope for the discussions: “Largescale disinformation, manipulation of information, malinformation, incitement to hate, outright false information are all increasingly and overwhelmingly affecting democratic societies and the citizens’ ability to form their own views and take informed decisions, without any undue interferences and to express their choice, including through free and fair elections. These new challenges weaken democratic processes and institutions, affect the cohesion of democratic societies, erode the trust of citizens in democratic institutions and ultimately, raise concerns related to our common security. Therefore, we need to build our resilience by harnessing the instruments we already have and by preparing together for the already existing but also potential threats of tomorrow.”

The blog is republished from Kari Kivinen personal website that is recommended for additional material.

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