UN Talks: Tackling the Infodemic of COVID-19

As the world grapples with the pandemic, it is also faced with what the WHO has called an ‘infodemic’ – an excessive amount of information about a problem, which makes it difficult to identify a solution.

Event details

Date:23 June 2020
Time:3-4 pm CET
Venue:Webinar on Zoom

The current infodemic around COVID-19 includes the spread of false or inaccurate information (i.e. misinformation), and false information which is deliberately intended to mislead (i.e. disinformation). Not only are mis- and disinformation detrimental to public health efforts, but they can also undermine the protection of human rights, democracy and sustainable development.

The pandemic has contributed to an upsurge in hate speech, discrimination and scapegoating narratives, damaging social cohesion and trust whilst increasing the risk of exclusion and violence towards minorities and vulnerable groups. The infodemic is burdening countries worldwide, especially in developing countries and countries with fragile institutions. As the United Nations supports countries in responding to and recovering from the pandemic, how can it help to tackle the ongoing infodemic?

This webinar examined what the infodemic on COVID-19 encompasses, what the direct and indirect consequences are, and how the United Nations is responding globally and at country-level to the spread of mis- and disinformation on COVID-19. Somalia was presented as a country case example.



Per Olsson Fridh
 State Secretary to the Swedish Minister for International Development Cooperation

Melissa Fleming
Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications, United Nations

Jocelyn Mason
UNDP Resident Representative in Somalia

Moderator: Malin Herwig
Director a.i. at Oslo Governance Centre

Video of event

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Seminar Series

UN Talks

The seminar is the seventh in a series of #UNtalks, jointly organised by the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation and UNDP Sweden with the aim to contribute to critical reflection and deeper understanding of the role and work of the United Nations.

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UN Talks 4