05 October 2021
Tuesday 28 September 2021 was UNESCO Access to Information Day, an internationally-recognised annual occasion on which to reflect on the importance of transparency and freedom of information, celebrate successes and highlight areas for improvement and development.
This year's Access to Information Day was a particularly busy one, with a wide range of online events organised in the UK and around the world. UNESCO held an extensive series of webinars addressing the theme of "Building Back Better with Access to Information" - topics included:
- Leveraging digital technologies
- Delivering regionally, delivering for citizens
- Harnessing open educational resources
- The importance of independent oversight
Find details and recordings of all of the sessions via the UNESCO Access to Information Day page.
Elsewhere, mySociety - the UK-based not-for-profit organisation that runs the website 'What Do They Know' - hosted a 'Show and Tell' event called "The Right to Know Across Europe". The event highlighted campaigns that have used FOI to achieve successes, and offered perspectives on the current state of freedom of information in the UK.
Speakers at the Show and Tell, included Jenna Corderoy from openDemocracy and Patricia Anderson from the Give Them Time campaign here in Scotland. The mySociety blog has a review and the video of the event.
Meanwhile, the Scottish Public Information Forum (SPIF) held a special event marking Access to Information Day and also looking ahead to the COP26 climate conference taking place in Glasgow from the end of October. Environmental journalist Rob Edwards led the discussion about the conference, its potential impact, and the value of transparency.
The SPIF is run by the Campaign for Freedom of Information in Scotland, and there's more information about the event and the SPIF on the Campaign's website.
How did you mark Access to Information Day? Was there an event or activity that we've missed? Please let us know.