Health Desk – 05 May,2021: WHO and UN Global Pulse, the Secretary-General’s digital innovation initiative are embarking today on a new venture to analyse content shared on public radio across the African continent to support infodemic monitoring. Part of the wider infodemic management programme, this collaboration will integrate radio data analysis into monitoring tools to inform the infodemic response by including more voices of vulnerable populations.
Radio remains one of the most reliable and affordable ways of accessing and sharing information with some 44,000 stations worldwide as reported by UNESCO. People discuss everything from the light-hearted to the serious, including the effects COVID-19 is having on them, their families, and their communities. Often, opinions expressed in radio talk shows include first-hand accounts of incidents, and mis- and disinformation reported by citizens that may not be recorded elsewhere.
In the coming months, the plan is to integrate more than 100 public radio stations and develop a custom-built monitoring and analysis dashboard that will allow public health officials, infodemic managers, and fact checking organizations to track changing questions and concerns, including mis- and dis-information, to gather insights that can inform public health decisions.