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BNNRC Joins APC network

They will contribute to creating a healthy digital ecosystem
Staff Correspondent
18 Apr 2024 18:03:20 | Update: 18 Apr 2024 18:03:20
BNNRC Joins APC network

The Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) has officially joined the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) network with a strong commitment to creating a healthy digital ecosystem in Bangladesh.

This is a significant milestone for BNNRC. They anticipate the APC membership will provide us access to numerous resources and opportunities to collaborate with other like-minded organisations on media development and digital transformation in Bangladesh, according to a press release.

As they re-evaluate the BNNRC's mandate, we recognise the need to rename the organisation and establish a new vision, mission, and strategy.

APC is a global network of civil society organisations whose mission is to create a just and sustainable world by harnessing the collective power of activists, organisations, excluded groups, communities and social movements to challenge existing power structures and ensure that the internet is developed and governed as a global public good.

BNNRC is an independent Civil Society Organisation (CSO) based in Dhaka, Bangladesh; since 2000, it has been working with a focus on media development, building the capacity of CSOs on digital transformation, which is both knowledge-driven and context-sensitive.

It considers the challenges and opportunities created by Bangladesh's rapidly changing media & CSOs environment in the fourth industrial revolution era.

BNNRC has achieved recognition for its outstanding work in media development and digital transformation.

BNNRC is associated with the United Nations and has won several awards, including the UN WSIS Prize 2016 and recognition as the Champion for media development and digital transformation in 2017, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2023.

The organisation is also accredited by the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) and is an Observer Organisation with the UNFCCC.

BNNRC has been granted consultative status with the UN's Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

BNNRC has been accredited and regularly participated in the Open-ended Working Group on security of and in the use of information and communications technologies (2021–2025) of the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs.

BNNRC has been hosting the secretariat of the Bangladesh Internet Governance Forum since 2006 and the Bangladesh Initiative for Unified Voices on Global Digital Compact and UN Summit of the Future since 2022.

Some of BNNRC’s main initiatives

BNNRC has promoted Bangladesh's WSIS action (C1-C11) line and IGF localisation process for over two decades.

Their efforts have positively impacted the collective voice of the multi-stakeholder and have been recognised by the UN WSIS process seven times.

BNNRC's interventions have contributed significantly to the development of media and CSOs in Bangladesh, and their commitment to promoting a healthy digital ecosystem is inspiring.

BNNRC has supported the Bangladesh Internet Governance Forum (BIGF) since 2006.

The BIGF is a national forum that aims to improve Internet governance in Bangladesh. It engages civil society, government, corporate sectors, technical sectors, media, and academia to create partnerships, coalitions, and dialogues. The Bangladesh Internet Governance Forum has successfully established various platforms such as Bangladesh Kids IGF, Bangladesh Youth IGF, Bangladesh Women IGF, and Bangladesh School of Internet Governance, Bangladesh Parliamentarians Caucus on Internet Governance, Digital Economy & Media Development (BPCIDM), Bangladesh Law IGF, Bangladesh Teacher IGF, and Bangladesh Academic IGF.

BNNRC introduced training and fellowship support on Conflict-sensitive journalism, Mobile Journalism, and Journalist’s Digital Security and safety in Bangladesh, a pioneering initiative in the country.

Empowering The Third Gender (Hijra) through Community Radio Broadcasting in Bangladesh:  contributes that the future can be made more promising through the community radio broadcasting program, so far as government, hijra communities, development sector, private sector, NGOs, academia, community people – together put in concerted efforts for the inclusion of hijras in the daily community life in rural Bangladesh.

Most importantly, the voices of the hijra community – their ideas, aspirations, and solutions – must be heard during this process.

The Bangladesh Initiative for Unified Voices on Global Digital Compact & Summit of the Future 2024, under the auspices of the Bangladesh Internet Governance Forum (BIGF) and Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC), has been engaging stakeholders since 2022 to sensitise and engage them about GDC and Summit of the Future 2024 and create a shared vision of Bangladesh's challenges, priorities, and way forward.

BNNRC has demonstrated noteworthy efficacy in cultivating public discourse and sensitising stakeholders at both national and community levels on SDGs. Its primary focus has been to facilitate the localisation of SDG 16 to achieve a peaceful and inclusive society. This endeavour aligns with the objectives of institutions that actively engage in public discourse and policy advocacy. In particular, BNNRC has prioritised amplifying the voices of youth, youth women, and members of vulnerable communities in localising SDG-16.

This approach has enhanced their participation and influence in these critical discussions through the BNNRC hyper-local method.

BNNRC advocated for the opening of Community Radio Broadcasting in Bangladesh, leading to the Community Radio Policy 2008.

Today, 20 community radio stations, in partnership with CSOs/NGOs, support about 4.5 million rural people. Since 2009, BNNRC has trained and provided resources to about one thousand community radio broadcasters nationwide. Innovation is critical, using smart mobile phones and ICT to make community radio more interactive and inclusive. BNNRC now uses community radio tools to facilitate open dialogue and build connections.

Bangladesh is rapidly undergoing digital transformation; however, misinformation and disinformation pose a significant threat to democracy, transparency, and security. BNNRC, supported by The Asia Foundation, has launched Youth Resilient to Misinformation: Building Local Engagement and Media Development, a two-part project aimed at making young people aware of the dangers of misinformation and how to deal with it.