Welcome to the fifth edition of the Media and Digital Literacy Academy of Beirut
The academy this year will focus on responding to extremism, gender equality, and human rights during conflicts and wars. The academy will work on finding solutions and developing media and digital literacy content related to these issues.
This year’s participants come from 34 institutions and 15 countries. The Arab participants come from Egypt, Palestine, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Bahrain, Algeria, Morocco, and Yemen. And for the first time, MDLAB will enroll international participants from non-Arab countries, including Germany, United States, China, Russia, Bulgaria, and Iran.
The academy is excited to welcome our many guest speakers this year, among them are Sut Jhally (University of Massachusetts), Roger Waters (Pink Floyd), Paul Mihailidis (Emerson College), Carola Richter (Free Berlin University), Amanda Philips (Georgetown University), Jennifer Rosales (Center for Social Justice), Julian McDougall (Bournemouth University), Megan Fromm (Colorado Mesa University), Moses Shumow (Florida International University), Monika Halkort (LAU), Claudia Kozman (LAU), and Jad Melki (LAU).
The academy will also be screening two documentaries: Lebanese journalist and activist Maya Majzoub’s taboo-breaking Fallen Television and the highly acclaimed The Occupation of the American Mind, produced by The Media Education Foundation, which will be followed by a Q&A with Sut Jhally and Roger Waters.
Since its launch, MDLAB has achieved major milestones in promoting and developing media literacy in the Arab region. Whereas before 2010, not one Arab university offered a media literacy course, today over 36 universities and a dozen schools offer media literacy courses or incorporate media literacy modules into their curricula. In recognition of these achievements, MDLAB’s founder Dr. Jad Melki received the 2015 UNESCO-UNAoC International Media and Information Literacy Award for promoting media literacy education in the Arab region. MDLAB 2017 is sponsored by the Norwegian Embassy and co-sponsored by the German DAAD, DW Academy and the EU.
MDLAB 2016 will take place at the Lebanese American University (LAU) Beirut campus August 7-16. The academy will host 43 faculty and student participants from 20 different universities from Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Egypt, Jordan, Palestine, Oman, UAE, Algeria, and Lebanon and 14 high school students from Jesus and Mary School and 7 school teachers from different Lebanese schools.
This year’s theme revolves around Civic engagement and youth radicalization. International and regional experts in media and digital literacy will lead the main lectures and applied activity sessions: Henry Jenkins (USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism), Sangita Shresthova (USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism), Moses Shumow (Florida International University), Paul Mihailidis (Emerson College), Yasmine Dabbous (Lebanese American University), Khaled Nasser (Lebanese American University), Sarah Mallat (Lebanese American University), Jad Melki (Lebanese American University), Susan Moeller (Maryland University), Michael Oghia, Ingo Bever (DW Akademie), and Carola Richter (Free Berlin University). Sarah Mallat, Samer Bayhum, Annie Tabakian, and Hussein Kassab will lead the digital squad. Nay El Helou, Issa Kanji, Lynn El Jbeily, Rahaf Jammal, Tima Ahmad, Mizyed Azrai, Khaled Abi Jomaa, Nora Sakabodian, Omar Hamadeh, and Dana Mroueh assisted the chairperson Dr. Jad Melki and the director Ms. Lubna Maaliki.
MDLAB 2015 hosted hosted 47 faculty and student participants from 18 different universities from Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Egypt, Jordan, Palestine, Iran, Oman, UAE, and Lebanon and three school teachers from International College (IC) Lebanon.
MDLAB 2015 was convened August 10 to 23, 2015. This year’s theme revolved around Media Literacy, Wars, and Terrorism. Ten experts in media and digital literacy led the main 17 lectures and six applied activity sessions: Stephen Reese (Univ. of Texas, Austin), Moses Shumow (Florida International University), Paul Mihailidis (Emerson College), Yasmine Dabbous (Lebanese American University), Dima Dabbous (Lebanese American University), Sarah Mallat (AUB), Jad Melki (LAU), Rasha Abdulla (American University of Cairo), Alaa Ghazal (Dawlaty Organization), and Suheil Dahdal (American University of Sharjah). Patyl Kevorkian, Dicky Kurkijian, Chafic Najem, Alissar Daher, Samira Makki, Maryam Ghaddar, Jena Nabut, Maya Habib, Ghia Al Bardan, and Maya Wakim assisted the chairperson Dr. Jad Melki and the director Ms. Lubna Maaliki.
With support from MDLAB 2015, the Ministry for the development of media programs in Iraq accepted the proposal to include a media literacy course as part of the mass communication, journalism, and Public Relations majors. The course will be effective starting Fall 2016-2017 in University of Baghdad, Al Iraqiya University, Al Mustansiriya University, University of Mosul, Thi Qar University, Tikrit University, University of Anbar, and Wassit University.
2013 marked the first year for MDLAB. The academy included participants from 12 universities from Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, and Lebanon. The academy hosted eight keynote lecturers and experts in the field of media and digital literacy: Paul Mihailidis, Moses Shumow, Renee Hobbs, Stephen Salyer, and Susan Moeller (USA), Andrew Whitworth (UK), and Ahmad Al Rawi (Iraq), and Sarah Mallat (Lebanon) who gave lectures and supervised applied activities with the assistance of graduate assistances: Ramz Sahuri, Bayan Itani, Marc Abi Zeid, Christina Tkacik, and Rawan Annan.
2013 included a series of lectures discussing media literacy and its impact on education in the Arab region. 52 faculty and student participants identified the challenges of introducing a media literacy course in their countries and worked on finding solutions to such challenges.