CFP: Collaborative Research Workshop on the History of the New World Information and Communications Order

Deadline: January 15, 2023

The Non-Aligned News Research Partnership (NANReP) invites applications from collaborative-minded scholars located anywhere in the world to participate virtually in a five-day research workshop on the history of the New World Information and Communications Order (NWICO). This international e-workshop is scheduled for 5-9 June 2023.

Shepherded by the Non-Aligned Movement, NWICO was a radical declaration that sought to democratize international communications and its imperial structure. In late 1978, UNESCO member states unanimously approved NWICO in resolution form, under the long name: Declaration on Fundamental Principles concerning the Contribution of the Mass Media to Strengthening Peace and International Understanding, to the Promotion of Human Rights and to Countering Racialism, Apartheid and Incitement to War. Above all, NWICO adherents denounced the grave imbalances between the global South and North in the field of international media. In an age of human rights and decolonization, NWICO contended that the domain of world news continued to frame racial thinking, socialize racisms, and perpetuate imperial inequalities in the world.

Supported by the UNESCO Archives and hosted by the University of Saskatchewan, this international e-workshop will collaboratively explore UNESCO’s large digital library (UNESDOC: and public archival database (Access-to-Memory: Archivists will open the collaborative research workshop with a tutorial of UNESCO’s digital collections and be available to participants for individual consultation. While research will be conducted independently, daily 60-minute virtual meetings will be held at practical times, based upon the time zones of accepted participants, to discuss findings, exchange information, and share ideas. Two keynotes will be offered by contemporary NWICO participants: Roberto Savio (Co-Founder and former President of the Inter Press Service) and Dr. Nabil Dajani (member of UNESCO’s International Panel of Experts on Communication Research in the 1970s). Finally, participation in all workshop events is mandatory.

This collaborative research workshop serves as the first of two events organized by NANReP. The second event–an international conference–will take place in-person at the University of Toronto in June 2024, immediately before the annual meeting for the Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR). A key objective of NANReP’s 2024 conference is to produce an edited volume that examines the international and global histories of NWICO.

Examples of projects include:

Histories of decolonization and the global South

Histories of non-alignment and the Non-Aligned Movement

Histories of media and communications

Histories of international organizations

Histories of human rights

NANReP welcomes projects outside of these topics, and generally is looking to encourage more engagement with UNESCO’s digitized holdings. Successful proposals will not be pre-circulated.

The deadline for applications is: 15 January 2023. Individual proposals must include: 1) a 300-word project description; and 2) a 2-page CV. Project descriptions should include a discussion of how UNESCO materials are integral to the research project. Please send proposals in one PDF file to Dr. Maurice Jr. Labelle, at: Results will be shared with all applicants by 15 February 2023.

NANReP is an international partnership funded by a 3-year (2022-25) Partnership Development Grant from the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Its executive members are: Drs. Heidi Tworek, Zoe LeBlanc, Cindy Ewing, and Maurice Jr. Labelle (Project Director). NANReP’s partners include: the UNESCO Archives, the Afro-Asian Networks Research Collective, the University of British Columbia’s Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions, the University of Toronto’s Department of History, Resonator Agency Inc., and the University of Saskatchewan’s Historical Geographic Information Systems Lab. For more on NANReP, visit: