THE BALTIC CENTRE FOR MEDIA EXCELLENCE: A CASE STUDY ON MEDIA LITERACY AS A TOOL AGAINST RUSSIAN DISINFORMATION.
Garcia, Cynthia A.
- Submitted in partial fulfillment of the degree Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Abstract: The purpose of this research is to explore how Latvia, a country that is more vulnerable to disinformation because of its media environment, is modifying its own media literacy initiatives to counter Russian disinformation campaigns. This paper will discuss one ... read morecase where Latvia is utilizing media literacy tactics to do so: the Baltic Centre for Media Excellence (BCME), which is a journalism non-profit organization located in Riga that is relatively unknown in the United States. This organization has become a hub for smart journalism in the Baltic region and beyond, and it provides independent media outlets with practical professional training and mentorship related to media management, essential media market research, and audience analysis. It is also working to broaden its impact among the public by encouraging media literacy, critical thinking, civic awareness, and demand for quality journalism in schools, public discussions, and online.The argument of this paper is that the BCME is successfully implementing media literacy interventions that are grounded in well-established components of media literacy. It is, however, a very young organization operating within a country that does not have fully-formed media literacy traditions, is hyper-focused on the journalism community, and has yet to publicly share outcome data to significantly prove the effectiveness of its interventions. By focusing on this case, this research will explain how effective media literacy programs could be tailored to specific country contexts. This paper will provide insight on what media literacy is, how it is being measured, how it is being applied in the Latvian context, what challenges exist within media literacy research and implementation, and avenues for future research.read less