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Launch of Digital Freedom of Expression Teaching Portal

28 March 2019,

The Centre for Law and Democracy has collaborated with Columbia Global Freedom of Expression and nine other universities and civil society organisations from around the world to launch a new teaching portal Freedom of Expression Without Frontiers. The goal of the portal is to promote the adoption of a global approach to the teaching of free speech. The project grew out of meetings at Columbia University which concluded that the teaching of free speech, media law and communications remains heavily centred on one country and one discipline and, as such, is badly out of alignment with global needs.

“As an organisation that does a lot of training of freedom of expression and the right to information, is a pleasure for CLD to collaborate on this project,” said Toby Mendel, Executive Director, CLD. “We believe that bringing together high quality and more internationally focused training materials, under the auspices of such renowned founding partners, will bring a lot of benefits.”

Freedom of Expression Without Frontiers offers close to 300 academic and training resources on the laws, institutions and actors that have founded a global system of freedom of expression, information and media. Its target audiences include educators, whether academic or civil society based, who wish to design and offer courses and trainings on this global information ecosystem, and students, journalists, legal practitioners who wish to engage and understand free speech issues from a global standpoint.

The Portal includes pedagogical resources designed by professors and trainers from different parts of the world and across different disciplines. The website is organised around nine teaching modules, each of which covers a variety of themes within its subject area. For example, the module on Journalism offers resources exploring how international and regional law and bodies have defined the practice of journalism – from the rejection of licensing, to the protection of journalistic sources and the importance of self-regulation – and debating the professional and ethical standards that ought to be demanded of citizen journalists and bloggers. Resources can be segmented further according to their fields and medium, such as required readings, international standards, jurisprudence, academic articles, Massive Online Open Courses (MOOC) and other multimedia resources.

In addition to CLD and Columbia Global Freedom of Expression, the founding partners include:

• Article 19 (London, UK)
• Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, Harvard University (Cambridge, US)
• Centre for Communication Governance, National Law University (Delhi, India)
• Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism (New York, US)
• Institute for Information Law (IViR), Amsterdam Law School, University of Amsterdam (Amsterdam, the Netherlands)
• Journalism and Media Studies Centre, The University of Hong Kong (Hong Kong)
• Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications, Northwestern University (Evanston, US)
• Pritzker School of Law, Northwestern University (Chicago, US)
• School of Law, University of Los Andes (Bogotá, Colombia)

For further information, please contact:

Toby Mendel
Executive Director
Centre for Law and Democracy
Email: toby@law-democracy.org
+1 902 431 3688
twitter: @law_democracy

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