Journalists and scholars convene for the inaugural Media & Democracy Summit in Delaware

A few days ago, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) Ithaca Initiative at the University of Delaware Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy and Administration and the incubator for Media Education and Development (iMEdD) convened leading journalists, scholars and experts for a summit on media and democracy at The Queen in Wilmington, Delaware from May 29-31.

The free and open to the public gathering, brought together more than 40 experts to discuss the crucial role of media in democracy and address the challenges that citizens face in today’s media and political climate globally.

The summit convened eminent journalists, academic experts, civic and philanthropic leaders including CNN’s John Avlon; presidential historian, Douglas Brinkley; PBS’s Margaret Hoover; Daily Show co-host Jordan Klepper; Pulitzer Center executive editor Marina Walker Guevara and journalist at The Guardian & Observer, and a 2019 Pulitzer finalist for her role in breaking Cambridge Analytica Carole Cadwalladr for a wide range of keynote presentations, one-on-one conversations, and panel discussions. The discussions looked back, contextualizing the upcoming elections with presidential historian, Douglas Brinkley, and looked ahead, examining the role and use of political satire in response to misinformation and its role in democracy with comedian Jordan Klepper. The diversity of speakers also fostered conversations where speakers were able to examine what the media in the U.S. and in other nations can learn from each other — from how to cover authoritarian leaders to protecting the freedom of the press in a democracy.

To watch the SNF Ithaca x iMEdD Media & Democracy Summit sessions, please visit the iMEdD YouTube channel.

As part of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF’s) ongoing series on Civic Engagement and Civil Discourse in the US, the discussion “Consumers or Citizens” that took place a day before the Summit, examined, with experts and renowned political strategists, how the proliferation of political advertising, paid campaigns, and marketing strategies has reshaped contemporary political discourse. To watch the entire discussion please visit the SNF Dialogues website. 

“We’re trying to build bridges between journalists, experts, academics, and students, and to foster conversations about the role of the media in democracy today,” said Anna-Kynthia Bousdoukou, iMEdD Managing Director, SNF Dialogues Executive Director and journalist.

Additional editorial content including inspiring interviews from the Media and Democracy Summit will soon be available at

The summit is jointly organized by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) Ithaca Initiative in the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy and Administration at the University of Delaware and the incubator for Media Education and Development (iMEdD).