Thursday, June 13

Mastering Narratives: Navigating Disinformation and Shaping Perceptions for Pakistan’s Future

Mastering Narratives: Navigating Disinformation and Shaping Perceptions for Pakistan’s Future

Mastering Narratives: Navigating Disinformation and Shaping Perceptions for Pakistan's Future

The Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS), Lahore, hosted a seminar titled ‘Mastering Narratives: Navigating Disinformation and Shaping Perceptions for Pakistan’s Future’ on 25 January 2024. The event discussed the challenges that Pakistan faces in the context of 5th Generation Warfare, which is characterised by the strategic use of deception and disinformation.

The seminar commenced with opening remarks by Ms Nidaa Shahid, Senior Researcher at CASS, Lahore. This was followed by a keynote address by Mr Amir Jahangir, Founder and CEO of Mishal Pakistan, who spoke about disinformation and its implications in the media age. Dr Zeeshan Zaigham, an Assistant Professor at Beaconhouse National University, shed light on the hostile narratives and perception-building tactics being used against Pakistan. Ms Amber Shamsi, Director of the Centre for Excellence in Journalism, provided valuable insights for countering disinformation and guarding narratives.

In his concluding remarks, Air Marshal Asim Suleiman (Retd), President, CASS Lahore, acknowledged the dangers posed by disinformation and false narratives to Pakistan’s international image and security. He emphasised the crucial role of media literacy, digital resilience and ethical journalism in countering disinformation. He mentioned the World Economic Forum’s 2024 Global Risks Report, which positions AI-generated misinformation and disinformation as the second-highest global risk at a staggering 53 percent, and stressed the need for countermeasures. In the end, he hoped for Pakistan to not only endure but triumph in this 5th Generation War.

The seminar highlighted various crucial points. The speakers emphasised the need for a comprehensive understanding of the global information landscape and its implications. The discussion highlighted that India has been identified as the epicentre of disinformation in 2024. It was also emphasised that in this technologically-driven era, nations that empower their citizens with a robust digital presence wield the transformative power to influence the global landscape. Moreover, the need for Pakistan to comprehensively reassess its national security priorities in light of identified challenges was stressed. The emphasis was on creating a tailored strategy, leveraging Pakistan’s strengths while effectively addressing vulnerabilities posed by disinformation tactics by adversaries.

The seminar concluded with a unanimous call for proactive policy decisions in the face of the changing digital landscape. This merits media mastery and adaptability as Pakistan charts its course in this challenging era.

Editor: Raja Kamran