World Press Freedom Day

The theme of this 31st World Press Freedom Day is “The press at the service of the planet: environmental crisis and the urgency of journalism.” With this theme, UNESCO highlights the importance of the role of information in our societies to ensure a “sustainable future that respects people’s rights, their diversity of voices, and gender equality.”

The aim of the day is to raise awareness of the major challenges faced by journalists in disseminating information on crucial topical issues such as climate migration, animal trafficking, poaching, deforestation and others. The United Nations (UN) believes that giving visibility to these many situations helps to promote peace and democratic values worldwide.

It’s also a good time to highlight the impact of attacks on the validity of science and misinformation campaigns that threaten pluralistic and thoughtful public debate. This is all the more essential as misleading information on environmental issues sows doubt and can undermine international efforts to combat climate change.

Added to all these aspects are those linked to the impact of digital communications systems, with the weakening of traditional media and the growing dangers towards journalists.

It is in this context that the players are invited to meet in Santiago to “reflect on the fundamental role of journalism and reliable information on protecting our planet,” while addressing the challenges facing the profession.

The Day also serves to remind, “governments of the need to respect their commitment to press freedom.”

The concept note for the Santiago conference is available in English, Spanish and French.