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EU changes title for migration commissioner after outcry

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  The incoming European Commission chief has changed the title of her migration commissioner from "Protecting our European Way of Life"...
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Belarus leader visits Austria, seeking closer EU ties

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Romania vote set to give boost to region's liberals

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EU warns of low growth with debt on the rise

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Romania parliament gives green light to minority liberal govt

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Hong Kong bars democracy activist Joshua Wong from local election

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Former Catalan leader to fight Belgian extradition

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Saudi hosts 'Davos in desert' as outrage fades over critic's murder

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Jailed Uighur Tohti wins European Parliament Sakharov rights award

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The European Parliament on Thursday awarded the Sakharov Prize for human rights to Uighur intellectual Ilham Tohti, who has been sentenced...
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EU fires budget warning shots to Italy, France

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EU changes title for migration commissioner after outcry

EU changes title for migration commissioner after outcry EU changes title for migration commissioner after outcry
  The incoming European Commission chief has changed the title of her migration commissioner from "Protecting our European Way of Life"...
Read More...

Belarus leader visits Austria, seeking closer EU ties

Belarus leader visits Austria, seeking closer EU ties Belarus leader visits Austria, seeking closer EU ties
Belarus's isolated leader Alexander Lukashenko on Tuesday visits Austria, marking his first trip to an EU member in more than three years as...
Read More...

Romania vote set to give boost to region's liberals

Romania vote set to give boost to region's liberals Romania vote set to give boost to region's liberals
Romania's pro-European President Klaus Iohannis is the favourite to win the first round of the country's election Sunday, potentially adding...
Read More...

EU warns of low growth with debt on the rise

EU warns of low growth with debt on the rise EU warns of low growth with debt on the rise
The EU slashed its already low growth forecast for the eurozone on Thursday (Nov 7), intensifying pressure on Germany and other rich countries...
Read More...

Romania parliament gives green light to minority liberal govt

Romania parliament gives green light to minority liberal govt Romania parliament gives green light to minority liberal govt
Romania's pro-European liberals on Monday succeeded in getting parliamentary approval to form the next government, ending months of political...
Read More...

Hong Kong bars democracy activist Joshua Wong from local election

Hong Kong bars democracy activist Joshua Wong from local election Hong Kong bars democracy activist Joshua Wong from local election
Hong Kong democracy activist Joshua Wong was barred Tuesday from standing in upcoming local elections after months of huge and frequently violent...
Read More...

Former Catalan leader to fight Belgian extradition

Former Catalan leader to fight Belgian extradition Former Catalan leader to fight Belgian extradition
Lawyers for former Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont vowed Tuesday to fight Spain's efforts to extradite him from Belgium on charges of sedition...
Read More...

Saudi hosts 'Davos in desert' as outrage fades over critic's murder

Saudi hosts 'Davos in desert' as outrage fades over critic's murder Saudi hosts 'Davos in desert' as outrage fades over critic's murder
Dozens of global policymakers and tycoons will attend a Saudi investment summit starting Tuesday, helping the kingdom turn the page on a critic's...
Read More...

Jailed Uighur Tohti wins European Parliament Sakharov rights award

Jailed Uighur Tohti wins European Parliament Sakharov rights award Jailed Uighur Tohti wins European Parliament Sakharov rights award
The European Parliament on Thursday awarded the Sakharov Prize for human rights to Uighur intellectual Ilham Tohti, who has been sentenced...
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EU fires budget warning shots to Italy, France

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The European Commission on Tuesday demanded urgent clarifications from Italy and France on their budget plans for next year, worried they veer...
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New research programs at US universities will focus on the impact of technology on democracy, including the role of misinformation, a foundation

announced Monday.

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation said it would offer $50 million in funding for research "to better understand how technology is transforming our democracy and the way we receive and engage with information."

The initiative is the latest in response to concerns about declining trust in traditional media and influence campaigns on social networks which may be sponsored by intelligence services.

The Knight Foundation will fund new, cross-disciplinary research at 11 American universities and research institutions, including the creation of five new centers of study. 

"We're living the most profound change in how we communicate with each other since Gutenberg invented the printing press," said Alberto Ibarguen, Knight Foundation president.

"The internet has changed our lives and is changing our democracy. We have to take a step back and a step forward. To understand what is actually happening, we need independent research and insights based on data, not emotion and invective. To go forward, citizens must be engaged, and including university communities in the debate is a step in that direction."

Internet platforms have been credited with fueling democracy movements such as the Arab Spring, but have also been subject to manipulation in the 2016 US election and Brexit campaign.

In recent months, US President Donald Trump has stepped up his attacks on the mainstream media, and some surveys have shown many Americans have lost confidence in fact-checkers which aim to verify the claims of politicians and others.

The new research initiative is part of a $300 million commitment made by Knight Foundation in February to strengthen journalism and democracy, which has been joined by other foundations.

The grants will go to new projects including Carnegie Mellon University's Center for Informed Democracy and Social Cyber-Security; George Washington University's Institute for Data, Democracy, and Politics; New York University's Center for Social Media and Politics; University of North Carolina's Center for Information, Technology, and Public Life, and University of Washington's Center for an Informed Public.

Existing research centers getting funding include Indiana University, Stanford University, Yale University, the University of Texas, University of Wisconsin and the Data & Society Research Institute.

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