Christophe Leclercq moderates session at the Portuguese Presidency High Level Conference ‘’Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Journalism’’

Portuguese Presidency High-Level Conference ”Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Journalism” – 11 and 12 May 2021

On May 12th, Christophe Leclercq moderated a session on ‘’AI and the future of journalism’’ during the High Level Conference organised by the Portuguese Presidency. Among the panelists, Commissioner for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová addressed the current issues in the media sector, stating that ‘’public funding for the news media sector is key, but even more important is to guarantee media independence especially in AI’’.

Session 5: Public Policy Challenges for the future of journalism / journalism of the future

Moderator: Christophe Leclercq, Founder of EURACTIV Media Network and Chairman of Europe’s MediaLab


  • José Magalhães, Deputy, Member of the Committee on Culture and Media, Portuguese Parliament
  • Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, President, European Federation of Journalists
  • Nuno Artur Silva, Secretary of State for Cinema, Audiovisual and Media
  • Sabine Verheyen, President, Committee on Culture and Education, European Parliament
  • Věra Jourová, Vice-President for Values and Transparency, European Commission

High level political actors will have the opportunity to exchange views on public policies to enhance opportunities and address the risks of AI-based technologies in the news media sector as well as challenges for the future of journalism / journalism of the future.

Context and objective of the Conference

The existence of a free press/news media, independent from the various powers, namely political and economic, as well as being plural, economically sustainable, guided by criteria of ethics, accuracy, impartiality and truth is a sine qua non condition to democracy, respect for human rights, good governance and open societies.

In a historical context in which disinformation has become prominent, the importance of the role of the press/news media is increasingly evident. However, market and technological developments in recent decades and the COVID-19 pandemic have placed it at risk of survival.

The fast-paced development of so-called Artificial Intelligence (AI), which already allows the automated production of certain information pieces, significantly exacerbates these circumstances. At the same time, the increased speed and connectivity capacity, with the expected 5G, and the multiplication of platforms are contributing to the transformation of the news media sector. The purpose of this High-Level Conference is to raise awareness of the adoption and impact of AI-based technologies on news production, distribution and consumption, and to promote reflection on the journalism of the future in the digital age.