Podstawowe informacje o opinii 

Rola władz lokalnych i regionalnych w przeciwdziałaniu dezinformacji iobcym manipulacjom informacjami i ingerencjom w informacje

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Opinion Number: CDR 1564/2023
Commission: CIVEX
Status: Adopted
Date: 05/07/2023
 
to highlight that promoters of foreign disinformation are increasingly making use of local actors, social problems and tensions and hate speech
to reiterate that local and regional authorities can in many cases identify events at an early stage and that local knowledge is often necessary to identify and carry out appropriate countermeasures, as noted also in the report of the European Parliament's Special Committee on Foreign Interference in all Democratic Processes in the European Union, including Disinformation
to propose concrete actions to strengthen resilience to disinformation at the local and regional level
to call on national and EU authorities to provide support through funding, programmes and initiatives to help local and regional authorities in their work to counter disinformation on the ground
In the European Commission's follow-up report of 20 March 2024, the Commission notes that it already sets at the disposal of the Member States technical support upon request through the Technical Support Instrument (TSI) for structural and institutional reforms including on the fight against disinformation and to reinforce capacity of national authorities, at all levels: the TSI funds are available for potential requests from local, regional and central government authorities. It is furthemore highlighted that the EEAS encourages local and regional authorities to foster close contact with the national points of contact of the Rapid Alert System (RAS), who are in a position to provide relevant information to them that are being shared through the RAS, including material shared on a regular basis by the EEAS on situational awareness and best practices. The EEAS also notes the FIMI (foreign information manipulation and interference) Toolbox, endorsed by the European Council in December 2023, which has four dimensions (1) situational awareness, (2) resilience building, (3) disruption and regulation as well as (4) external action, and as such can be applied at the national, regional and local level to establish a comprehensive and effective response framework to FIMI activity. The EEAS stands ready to share its experience with regional and local authorities and stakeholders, in addition to existing exchanges with Member States in the Council and the Rapid Alert System. On the need for successful quality local and regional media, the Commission refers to an ongoing Pilot Project on supporting local and regional media in news deserts which will produce a list of case studies of successful local and regional media, with a view to inspiring their peers across the EU.
THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS

 notes that disinformation through foreign information manipulation and interference is currently one of the biggest challenges facing authorities at all levels and that promoters of foreign disinformation are increasingly making use of local actors, social problems and tensions and hate speech;

 welcomes the fact that this growing problem has been reflected in key strategies and the work of EU institutions and bodies; recognising this problem, commissioned a handbook on good practice in countering disinformation at local and regional level;

 believes that it is absolutely necessary for national and EU authorities to provide support through funding, programmes and initiatives to help local and regional authorities in their work to counter disinformation on the ground;

 encourages regular and structured cooperation with local and regional organisations and representatives of civil society, researchers, educators, journalists and fact-checkers; and taking action to harness funds and opportunities under EU programmes such as CERV and Horizon Europe;

 recommends, with the support of EU and national institutions, developing and launching a pilot model for systemic responses to disinformation campaigns and incidents in regions, counties and municipalities, especially those most exposed to disinformation;

 stresses the importance of strategic communication, thus building public trust as a counterweight to disinformation activities;

 strongly emphasises that media literacy and education initiatives should reach as wide an audience as possible and be implemented both in cities and in rural areas;

 calls for increasing financial support from EU and national budgets and regional and local funds given to local media and journalists to protect media pluralism and to support fact-checking organisations and media literacy initiatives, while ensuring transparency, impartiality and independence of these actors.

Importance

High
Medium
Low
 

European Commission's follow-up report, 20 March 2024

In the European Commission's follow-up report of 20 March 2024, the Commission notes that it already sets at the disposal of the Member States technical support upon request through the Technical Support Instrument (TSI) for structural and institutional reforms including on the fight against disinformation and to reinforce capacity of national authorities, at all levels: the TSI funds are available for potential requests from local, regional and central government authorities. It is furthemore highlighted that the EEAS encourages local and regional authorities to foster close contact with the national points of contact of the Rapid Alert System (RAS), who are in a position to provide relevant information to them that are being shared through the RAS, including material shared on a regular basis by the EEAS on situational awareness and best practices. The EEAS also notes the FIMI (foreign information manipulation and interference) Toolbox, endorsed by the European Council in December 2023, which has four dimensions (1) situational awareness, (2) resilience building, (3) disruption and regulation as well as (4) external action, and as such can be applied at the national, regional and local level to establish a comprehensive and effective response framework to FIMI activity. The EEAS stands ready to share its experience with regional and local authorities and stakeholders, in addition to existing exchanges with Member States in the Council and the Rapid Alert System. On the need for successful quality local and regional media, the Commission refers to an ongoing Pilot Project on supporting local and regional media in news deserts which will produce a list of case studies of successful local and regional media, with a view to inspiring their peers across the EU.

 
20 Mar
 

CIVEX external seminar on Disinformation: regional and local dimension of a global challenge

Upon invitation of rapporteur-general Mr Brzezin, the external seminar on disinformation was held in Elblag, Poland, on 11 May. The seminar allowed for an exchange of views between local and regional politicians and high-level experts from, inter alia, theEast StratCom Task Force of the EEAS, NATO, US State department, Chatham House and the fact-checkers' community. Participants discussed strategies on countering foreign disinformation, particularly on the sub-national level, thus also informing the related opinion.

 
11 May
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