The MILEN White Paper | Media and Information Literacy Expert Network (MILEN) | DW | 18.10.2018
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Media and Information Literacy Expert Network

The MILEN White Paper

MILEN (Media and Information Literacy Expert Network) share the vision that Media Information and Literacy education is a critical tool to prepare citizens for a responsible future in an increasingly globalized world.

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Who are we?

MILEN consists of 13 experts in Media and Information Literacy (MIL) from across the world. Firmly rooted in practice, each of them has a recognised expertise and proven track record in the field, contributing in a unique way to freedom of expression, an open and diverse debate, equal access to technologies and information, and empowering critical media consumers and producers. They share the vision that MIL education is a critical tool to prepare citizens for a responsible future in an increasingly globalized world. 

MILEN is founded and supported by Deutsche Welle Akademie.


What do we do?

By making optimal use of our diverse backgrounds and expertises, MILEN supports, develops and promotes new initiatives in the field of Media and Information Literacy, in order to:

- create and empower informed citizens and communities

- promote critical thinking and an open and diverse debate

- advocate for Media and Information Literacy on policy level

- provide practical solutions to challenges in the field of Media and Information Literacy.

At the end of 2018, MILEN will launch the MILEN platform, a sharing space of innovative MIL education from across the globe. MILEN will work collectively to curate and provide open-source educational resources on its website. The platform will bring together policy makers, educators, academic institutions, journalists, civil society organisations and other MIL practitioners. The aim is to work together towards accessible, practical and inspiring solutions to MIL challenges across the globe.

MILEN’s understanding of Media and Information Literacy (MIL)

Throughout the last couple of years of involvement in the young, developing field of media and information literacy, from an academic and/or a practical angle, the MILEN experts have come to a common understanding of the fundamentals of MIL and what it entails. Generally, we draw from the Grünwald Declaration on Media Education and UNESCO’s definition on MIL. Citizens are not just passive consumers of media, but have for a long time had an active role in shaping the landscape and defining narratives. The emergence of social media has only catalyzed this. Therefore, MIL should be a tool for citizen empowerment, rather than for citizen protection, promoting conscious media consumption and production.[1]

Departing from this common understanding, MILEN set out to define practice-based solutions.


[1] The network uses the definition of UNESCO conceptualize MIL. UNESCO has played a pivotal role in developing an understanding of MIL at the international level. See:

[2] The founding experts of the network work in Cambodia, Namibia, Uganda, Bolivia, the Netherlands, Palestine, India, Moldova, Brazil, Jordan, Egypt, and Georgia.



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