The annual IPS Support Group Meeting, was held in Venice, Italy, on November 29, 2007. The meeting focused on “The role of communication in the alliance among civilizations”. The event was co-organized with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and counted on the support of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Province of Venice.
The topic of the meeting was chosen in the light of the Final Report published by the High-Level Group of the Alliance of Civilisations, an initiative launched in 2005 by the United Nations and co-sponsored by Spain and Turkey. The Final Report concludes that the key reasons for the growing divide between Muslim and Western societies are not religious but political, and stresses the role media can play in reframing images and perceptions so as to better reflect the diversity that exists within communities and to improve the prospects for cooperation and harmony between them.
One year after the launch of the report, and as the challenges continue to mount, the IPS Support Group was an opportunity for reflection on the role of media and communication in bridging the gap between peoples. The invited audience, keynote speakers and panellists were drawn from communication professionals, academia, civil society, government, faith communities and international institutions.
The outcomes of the Support Group meeting will be contributed to the ongoing work of the Alliance of Civilisations, which placed particular emphasis on the role of media, in the first instance through the participation of the IPS DG at the First Alliance of Civilizations Annual Forum in Madrid (2008-01-15)
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