Friday, November 30, 2018

New technologies help global parliaments become better connected: report - Xinhua | English.news.cn - Xinhua

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GENEVA, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- A new report by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Thursday shows that information and communication technology (ICT) is helping global parliaments become better connected and more transparent.

The report said that lawmakers are engaging more with people through social media and instant messaging.

Martin Chungong, IPU Secretary General, said, "A parliament that uses new technologies to be more open, transparent and accountable is also a parliament that empowers its people to be more engaged in public life by providing better information and greater access to its activities."

The IPU World e-Parliament report is the fifth in a series that the IPU started with the United Nations 10 years ago.

It shows how digital tools are transforming parliaments, and how new media are helping parliaments and lawmakers connect with new audiences.

More parliaments than ever use social media to communicate. Social media overtook TV and radio in the last report in 2016 as the most widely used medium for communication to the public, said the IPU.

The 2018 IPU report shows that 70 percent of the parliaments are now using a social network and 68 percent using Twitter.

One in five parliaments now uses instant messaging (such as WhatsApp), an increase of 154 percent from the eight percent reported in 2016.

The report is based on two surveys: the first on parliaments covering 114 parliamentary chambers in 85 countries; and the second on MPs based on a sample of 168 serving legislators.

Gabriela Cuevas, IPU President, said, "Parliaments need to harness the power of social media and new ways of communicating to reconnect with the people they represent."

She said technology is evolving every day and this has transformed the way people communicate.

"With the mere click of a button the world is within our reach, allowing us to access information, goods, and services almost instantly. Politics cannot afford to lag," said Cuevas.

The IPU said in a statement the IPU's World e-Parliament Conference scheduled for Dec. 3-5 in Geneva will receive the report.

At the conference, the IPU will also launch the Center for Innovation in Parliament, a new resource to support the use of digital tools in parliaments.


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