The Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS) in cooperation with our Latvian partner Brīvības un solidaritātes fonds (BSF) organised a launch event of the book ‘Resisting state propaganda in the new information environment: The case of the EU, Russia and the Eastern Partnership countries’.
The event took place at 10am on Friday, September 16th, at the Latvian University Library in Riga. It featured the participation of media industry experts and some of the publication’s co-authors, including Roberts Putnis, Head of Media Policy Division at the Latvian Ministry of Culture, Andris Mellakauls, Head of the Information Space Integration division at the Latvian Ministry of Culture and former chair of the Council of Europe Steering Committee on Media and Information Society, and Māris Cepurītis, Researcher at the Centre for East European Policy Studies. In a packed room, an interesting debate followed the presentations of the speakers, focusing on the various themes and strands of argumentation mentioned in the publication.
Through a collection of important articles, this book unfolds an interesting analysis of some rapidly emerging themes in the problematique of modern propaganda. It does so by primarily looking at how the European Union (EU) and some of its member states have acted to resist foreign propaganda efforts, and in so doing, tried to protect their democratic ethos and values. To inform this discussion with additional specificity, a number of information initiatives undertaken by the Russian Federation towards the Baltic EU member states and some of the Eastern Neighbourhood states are used as an illustrative example.
By reviewing policy responses against these and similar propaganda efforts, both at EU level and within various national contexts, this book also provides an in-depth overview of the challenges and opportunities that exist in defending core democratic values from hostile propaganda campaigns in our digital age. It also touches upon the methodology and the impact that these campaigns have had, not only on promoting or demoting certain information, but also on reinforcing certain messages and imagery, and ultimately on undermining the democratic foundations and modus operandi of each the countries under examination.