Three forces dominate media development in the Arab world: political power, economic interests and the digital revolution. Politicians and businesses continue to reflect the monopolies of opinion and revenue. The digital transformation, on the other hand, creates diversity, creativity and room for freedom. This transformation motivates young Arabs, and young people are vital, especially in a region where half of the population is younger than 25.
In the Arab world, as in other regions, online information can be exciting but at times deceptive, manipulated by people and computer programs. Those who use the Internet leave a trail – and intelligence services know that. In response, DW Akademie focuses on teaching children and youth critical media consumption, whether at Palestinian education institutes, Jordanian schools or Tunisian youth clubs.
At the same time, DW Akademie is strengthening services that deliver just that: content for young, self-confident media consumers. From Morocco to the Gulf Region, capacity building is important for independent thinking journalists. And so is keeping the audience in mind – as in the EU project "Shabab Live" which bridges the gap between media providers and audiences in six countries.
If the connection between journalists and audiences works, economic prospects emerge. Media makers worldwide agonize over financing models but there is no one solution. Our task is to promote regional management expertise and link it with international expertise, especially in South-South networks.
Good media management, relevant journalism and critical media consumption are DW Akademie's response to the Arab media crisis. We develop concepts together with our local partners in the region – there, where young people look to the future every day.