This meeting was a general discussion regarding the United Nations Department of Public Information (DPI). Ambassador Jan Kickert, Chair, discussed the constructive relationship that has been cultivated between the Committee and the Department of Public Information (DPI). Ambassador Kickert noted that the department has promoted global understanding amongst nations. The Chair discussed how the media has rapidly transformed from delivering simple information to complex forms of online interaction. The importance of adapting to new forms of communication with newer generations was highlighted.
Additionally, the Ambassador conducted a general debate based on reports submitted by the Secretary-General on Department activities, including its strategic communications, news, and outreach services. The comments focused on one main question: How does and how should the Organization communicate the values it upholds on behalf of all Member States? Various Member States mentioned the increasing difficulty in maintaining trust in major institutions because the public is constantly flooded by “fake news.”
During the discussion, Bangladesh and Egypt expressed their appreciation for the DPI and its initiatives. Also, Brazil voiced a concern about language barriers while Israel highlighted the need for safety in the digital age. In summary, fluid and interactive communication is extremely important today. Therefore, the DPI must continue to develop dialogues and techniques to successfully exchange information.
Meeting: Committee on Information
Date/Location: Wednesday, April 25, 2018; 10:00-13:00; Security Council Chamber, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY
Speakers: Ambassador Jan Kickert, Chair, Ms. Alison Smale, Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications
Written By: WIT Representative David Jansen