Mr. J.E. Naji Welcomed at the UNESCO Headquarters by Ms. Audrey Azoulay Deputy
Pr. Jamal Eddine Naji, Director General of Audiovisual Communication at the High Authority of Audiovisual Communication (HACA), was welcomed, on Monday February 12th, as President of ORBICOM, Network of UNESCO Chairs in Communication, by the Deputy Director General (DDG) of Ms. Audrey Azoulay, Former French Minister of Culture, who was elected last November 10th after Ms. Irina Bokova.
During a meeting that lasted more than one hour, gathering Ms. Ghislaine Azemard, treasurer of Orbicom, vise-rector of Paris VIII University, Ms. Bianca Rutherford, General Coordinator of Malaga Communication Chair, Pr. Naji presented a detailed overview on the history of this network that was created upon the proposal of both UNESCO and UQAM University in 1994, in Montreal (Secretary General Headquarters). Being the UN “Think Thank”, Orbicom closely follows the evolution of the communication field and all related sectors worldwide, through research, studies and publications in three languages, and with reference to the strategies, recommendations and Unesco action plans. For his part, the DDG Mr. Getachew Engida (Ethiopia) reiterated the support of the Unesco to this network incubating scientific research and forecasting reflections in communication and information, a domain with multiple issues and challenges that affect Unesco’s fundamental missions, and primarily peace. Unesco, he continues, should be perceived from now on as a “movement defending human rights and citizens’ expectations regarding sustainable development”. For, if the UN is an intergovernmental organization, its agenda should be, in fine, serving citizens and that especially with its constant budget declination and how governments are incrementally surpassed by the effects of future world on citizens particularly regarding communication. Moreover, in the digital era, government, specialists and international institutions concerned will work together to overcome communication issues and impacts.
These statements made Pr. Naji sketch out a flourishing vision that Orbicom intends on deploying for its 25th anniversary in 2019. This new project will be based on an agenda involving research and analysis forums from across the world, and that thanks to its 37 chairs and 250 members from more than fifty countries in all continents (China, Australia, Canada, Scandinavia and South Africa).
During this meeting of Guy Berger (South Africa), Director for Freedom of Expression and Media Development at Unesco, Mr. Cédric Wachholz (Switzerland), Chief of the Executive of this Office, Mr. Engida welcomed the various activities, as well as the “relevant partnerships of productive collaboration” that the HACA conducted during the last five years with the Unesco through involving the Orbicom. These activities particularly include the international conference on diversity (Skhirate, May 2013), the international conference on audiovisual archives (Rabat, November 2016), and the international conference on media literacy (Rabat, November 2017). In this regard, Mr. Engida stressed that the Unesco values the contribution of HACA in organizing events to identify, produce and raise awareness about new norms, and targeted analysis on concrete and structuring topics, such as gender equity, environment, Media literacy, public service mission, content professionals training etc.
At the end of this meeting, president of Orbicom and his delegation, were received by Pr. Banda Fackson (Zambia), recently appointed as program manager at the Unesco for Safeguarding the World’s Heritage, who expressed his full disposal to deploy a program of activities and partnerships, with both Orbicom and the HACA, in any field related to the world’s heritage and memory, such as audiovisual archives, the audiovisual and picture productions copyrights, and virtual museology.