Sunday, August 10, 2008

Landmark International Communication Conference, OURMedia 7, Opens in Accra

OURMedia 7
Ghana Coordinating Committee


Landmark International Communication Conference, OURMedia 7, Opens in Accra

A landmark international communication conference, OURMedia 7, opens at the Kofi Annan Centre for ICT Excellence on Monday, 11 August 2008 at 9:30 a.m.  The highlight of the Opening Ceremony is a new creative piece by Ghanaian Poet Professor Professor Kofi Anyidoho, Director of the African Humanities Programme at the University of Ghana. 

The theme of OURMedia 7 is: Identity, Inclusion, Innovation – Alternative Communication in a Globalized World.  

OURMedia 7 itself runs from 11 August to 15 August 2008, also at the Kofi Annan Centre for ICT Excellence. 

It brings together international communication experts and practitioners and grassroots activists and their Ghanaian counterparts.

Approximately 120 international and national participants are attending OURMedia 7.
 
Founded in 2001, OURMedia is a global network whose goal is to facilitate a long-term dialogue between academics, activists, practitioners and policy experts around citizens' media initiatives.  The main forum for the dialogue is an annual conference. 

OURMedia 7 is the first time the conference is being held in Africa.  The previous six conferences were held in Washington, D.C., USA; Barcelona, Spain; Barranquilla, Colombia; Porto Alegre, Brazil; Bangalore, India; and Sydney, Australia.

The theme of OURMedia 7 develops the key principle that alternative communication – a diversity of actors, voices, themes and discourses - needs to flourish and take hold to create alternative worlds.  Participants from around the globe are discussing this topic through the presentation of relevant research papers, innovative workshops and various media.

The international communication experts include OURMedia co-founder, Professor Clemencia Rodriguez of the University of Oklahoma, author of Fissures in the Mediascape: An International Study of Citizens' Media.  Another is filmmaker and participatory communication specialist Alfonso Gumucio-Dagron, Managing Director of the Communication Social Change Consortium and author of Making Waves: Stories of Participatory Communication for Social Change.   Among the academics to feature for the first time at an OURMedia conference are Professor Bu Wei of the Institute of Journalism & Communication at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, China.
African academics include an eminent pioneer of communication education in Africa, Professor Alfred Opubor of the Centre for Media Education and Development and founding Director of the Department of Mass Communication at the University of Lagos in Nigeria.  Another is Visiting New York University Professor Balufu Bakupa-Kanyinda of the Democratic Republic of Congo, who is showing his new documentary Afro@Digital, on the Digital Revolution and Africa.   
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An integral part of OURMedia 7 is a Community Radio Symposium at Radio Ada, in Ada, on Wednesday 13 August.  The Symposium marks the 10th anniversary of Radio Ada, Ghana's pioneer Community Radio station.

AMARC, the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters, is also holding the Africa Region observance of its 25th anniversary within the framework of OURMedia 7.

A Mini-Festival of crafts, exhibits and performances on Thursday 14 August is another special feature of OURMedia 7.

The event in Ghana is being organized by the Ghana Coordinating Committee (GCC).  Institutional members of the committee comprise the University of Ghana through the School of Communication Studies and the Institute of African Studies; Media Foundation for West Africa, Participatory Development Associates, PenPlusBytes (International Institute of ICT Journalism) and the Ghana Community Radio Network.

OURMedia 7 is being supported by the Institute of Development Studies in Sussex, UK (IDS) with support from the Swiss International Development Cooperation and the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida); the Open Society Institute of West Africa (OSIWA) based in Dakar, Senegal; the Panos Institute West Africa (PIWA), also in Dakar; and the African Farm Radio Research Initiative (AFRRI), based in Ottawa, Canada.

For more information, please contact the undersigned or the OURMedia 7 Event Organizer, Mr Akunu Dake (CEO, Heritage Development)

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__________________________________________
Dr Audrey Gadzekpo, Acting Director
School of Communication Studies, University of Ghana



1 comment:

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