UNESCO advises Ecuadorian National Assembly on parliamentary media
Within the framework of the agreement signed between UNESCO's Office in Quito and Ecuador's National Assembly, UNESCO has delivered a first advisory report on the establishment of parliamentary audio-visual media.
Conducted by a Mexican expert, Gerardo Ojeda Castañeda, the report provides recommendations on how the new Ecuadorian parliamentary media can contribute to strengthening the role and processes of the National Assembly. The report highlights the role of parliamentary media as a development tool that promotes democratic and civic values, such as transparency, freedom of expression and citizens' participation. In addition to its democratization objectives, parliamentary media must also fulfil creative production standards.
The report includes a set of guidelines on the steps required for the establishment of Ecuadorian parliamentary media and on how this public broadcasting service should be regulated. The parliament should appoint a management body, which will be advised by an external and professional council.
The report also proposes technological convergence and a multiplatform structure in order to allow interactivity (Web 2.0) and offer new dissemination channels, which will foster citizens' participation. For example, parliamentary media can offer interaction with the audience, as well as access to information directly from cellular phones, promoting what the report calls "communication decentralization".
This project is implemented within the framework of UNESCO's Communication and Information Programme, which aims at fostering editorial independence and quality programming of public service broadcasting. This includes parliamentary media, which play an important role in democracies. By allowing citizens to evaluate their representatives, parliamentary media promote governance and accountability, while ensuring the right to information.