The 2023 Media and Information Literacy Academy Amman (MILAA) was held in June in Amman for the first time and was organised locally by our AREACORE partner Jordan Media Institute (JMI). MILAA 2023 hosted 70 participants (students and faculty) from our AREACORE partner universities in Egypt, Palestine, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, Oman, Qatar, and Germany. Funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and supported by the DW Akademie and the Norwegian Embassy, this year’s MIL event emphasized issues of AI and its impact on journalism, as well as advanced digital multimedia skills and knowledge of activists, journalists, and media educators. Participants benefited from lectures, workshops, and training sessions geared to the different needs of students and faculty, and presented their projects on the final day of the academy.
MILAA 2023 brought together guest speakers with expertise covering different topics, such as “Media and information literacy & AI multimedia content”, “Intercultural stereotyping and the impact of AI”, “Automation in the newsroom” or about “Implications of AI on journalism and media”.
Guest speakers included among others Mirna Abou Zeid (Dean, Jordan Media Institute & AREACORE), Gretchen King (Lebanese American University), Ghayth Mahadib (Al Ahliyya Amman University), Naglaa Elemary (British University in Egypt), Basim Tweissi (Doha Institute for Graduate Studies), Lina Ejeilat (Co-founder and Executive Editor at 7iber.com), Rawan Jayoussi (ICFJ Knight Fellow), Firas Abanda (Jordan TV), Mohamad Awadallah (TV journalist), Ibrahim Sahouri (Al-Mamlaka TV), Geir Terje Ruud (Technology, journalism and media development), Nasri Messarra (Université Saint-Joseph), Pi Altendorfer (DW Akademie), Jad Melki (Lebanese American University & AREACORE), Dana Suyyagh (CEO, Al-Mamlaka TV), Carola Richter (FU Berlin & AREACORE) and various trainers from JMI.
The students had the opportunity to study and implement AI in journalism and evaluate its impact through their projects. By delving into the capabilities of AI, they gained valuable insights into the potential advantages and challenges it presents to journalism. The culmination of their joint efforts resulted in final presentations, where they could choose to present their projects as a 5–10-minute podcast or a 2-3 minutes long video. These presentations included 5-minute talks on their selected topics, accompanied by PowerPoint presentations, posters, or the produced clips. MILAA 2023 concluded with a sightseeing trip to Jerash and a farewell dinner where participants celebrated their achievements. In addition to the direct educational benefits, the annual ten-day MIL events foster collaboration among students and faculty from our partner universities in the AREACORE programme. This enables the formation of professional networks for both students and staff, instilling a commitment to prioritize media and information literacy in their respective home countries, and reinforcing the bonds between our partner universities that teach media and communication in the Arab world and Europe.