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Media Freedom Cohort of the Summit for Democracy

GFMD invites you to become part with the Media Freedom Cohort of the Summit for Democracy.

What is the Summit for Democracy – In late 2021, US President Biden hosted a Summit for Democracy, at which countries from around the world gathered and pledged concrete actions to advance democracy at home and around the world. In 2023, a follow-on Democracy Summit is planned. This second summit will highlight progress against commitments made in the first summit, as well as new commitments to advance democracy by a wider array of stakeholders.

What is the role of “Democracy Cohorts” – As part of what the summit planners are calling a “Year of Action” various “Democracy Cohorts” are in the process of being set up as multi-stakeholder groups to work on key themes.

What is the “Media Freedom Cohort” – A multi-stakeholder platform which aims to bring together civil society actors, media and other private sector leaders, philanthropic partners, academics, and government decision-makers, with a shared commitment to making concrete progress in improving media freedom.

Who is leading the “Media Freedom Cohort” 

  • Civil society lead: Internews
  • Government leads: Canada and the Netherlands (the current co-chairs of the Media Freedom Coalition)

Based on the media freedom pledges made at the first summit, the Media Freedom Cohort’s work has been divided into three priority areas:

1 – Protecting Journalists’ Safety & Security: Digital, physical and psycho-social safety measures, insurance and legal assistance, designed to protect journalists and other media workers.

  • Civil society leads: the ACOS Alliance and IFEX.

2️ – Advancing Freedom of Expression: Legal and regulatory reforms that protect freedom of expression, as enshrined in Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

  • Civil society lead: the High-Level Panel of Legal Experts on Media Freedom.

3 – Bolstering Independent and Diverse Media: Building funding models, industry standards and public policies that support the resilience and professional capacities of media outlets to survive and thrive in the coming decades.

  • Civil society lead: the Global Forum on Media Development (GFMD).

A message from Jeanne Bourgault, President, Internews: 

We know that media, the business community, philanthropy, government, and civil society all have unique roles in supporting and advancing media freedom. Our goal with the cohort is simple – we are calling on leaders from each of these communities to make new measurable and systemic commitments to advance media freedom. These commitments could be in the form of investment or budget pledges, policy reform, or internal process reform. This is a “big-tent” approach, with plenty of flexibility to advance diverse, but impactful actions across many sectors.

✅ If you are interested in being part of the Media Freedom Cohort, please e-mail media-freedom-cohort@internews.org by indicating the working group you are interested in joining and nominating a contact point for your organization. We will then connect you with the different working group leads.

📅 The first meeting of the Media Freedom Cohort will be on December 15th at 15.00 CET.


GFMD’s role 

As well as facilitating the engagement of our members with the Media Freedom Cohort and track three on “Bolstering Independent and Diverse Media”, GFMD will be using the cohort as an opportunity to continue the work on best practices for supporting journalism and media, more specifically our recent consultations on:

Get in touch!

If you would like more information about or would like to contribute to:

  1. GFMD’s role in Media Freedom Cohort
  2. The process of “Renewing principles on effective support to journalism and media”
  3. The GFMD report on “Coordinating Media Assistance and Journalism Support Efforts”

Please contact Tom Law at tlaw@gfmd.info 


If you are interested in being part of the Media Freedom Cohort, please e-mail media-freedom-cohort@internews.org by indicating the working group you are interested in joining and nominating a contact point for your organisation.

Status: Open

Organisation: Global Forum for Media Development (GFMD)

Deadline: 15/12/2022

Location: Online

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