Aegean Summit • June 30 - July 1 2016 • Athens, GR

Media Connecting Mediterranean Cities

Sarajevo • Athens • Rome • Istanbul • Beirut • Cairo • Tehran • Amman • Kuwait

Why we need an annual media forum connecting the Mediterranean

Outpost Magazine: Indie Media as Laboratories of Social Activism

Confirmed Speakers

Gelareh Kiazand

Gelareh Kiazand

Filmmaker - Tehran, Iran

Nick Malkoutzis

Nick Malkoutzis

Editor, MacroPolis- Athens

Maha ElNabawi

Maha ElNabawi

Co-founder - Mada Masr

Preethi Nallu

Preethi Nallu

Managing Editor, Refugeesdeeply

Iason Athanasiadis

Iason Athanasiadis

Freelance Journalist - Middle East

Alireza Jozi

Alireza Jozi

Media Entrepreneur - Tehran

Ibrahim Nehme

Ibrahim Nehme

Publisher - Beirut, Lebanon

Lina Attalah

Lina Attalah

Editor, Mada Masr - Cairo

Enrico De Angelis

Enrico De Angelis

Syria Untold

Sotiris Sideris

Sotiris Sideris

Co-founder, Athens Live

Chrysovalantis Stamelos

Chrysovalantis Stamelos

Filmmaker- Izmir, Turkey

Ayman Mhanna

Ayman Mhanna

Director, GFMD - Brussels

Yavuz Baydar

Yavuz Baydar

Journalist, Platform24 - Istanbul

Doa Ali

Doa Ali

Journalist, 7iber - Amman

Spyros Ladeas

Spyros Ladeas

Director, Aegean Summit

Marta Ottaviani

Marta Ottaviani

Journalist, La Stampa - Milan

Teun Gautier

Teun Gautier

Publisher, The Cooperation - Amst

Chris Elliott

Chris Elliott

Guardian, Ethical Journalism EJN

Hamoud Almahmoud

Hamoud Almahmoud

Arab Reporters Investigative Jour

Thodoris Georgakopoulos

Thodoris Georgakopoulos

Journalist - Athens

Laura Silvia Battaglia

Laura Silvia Battaglia

Freelance Journalist, Yemen-Italy

Opening the channels of communications in the Euro-Med & MENA region

Cross-border collaborations & progressive editorial narratives

An annual media meeting point between Europe & the Middle East

Discussing these themes on June30 – July1 in Athens

20 speakers in an interactive media forum with participants



8:00AM Registration & Coffee 

9:00AM Defining Objectives of Aegean Summit 2016

  • Spyros Ladeas, Director, Aegean Summit

 What is the role of independent media?

9:20AM Moderator: Ayman Mhanna (GFMD Brussels)

  • Access to information and fundamental freedoms and involvement of media organizations in this process

9:30AM Yavuz Baydar (Platform24 Istanbul)

  • Independent media: pluralism, ownership, freedom of expression

9:40AM Thodoris Georgakopoulos (Dianeosis Athens)

  • Philanthropy as a business model and media as a public good

9:50AM Ibrahim Nehme (Outpost Magazine Beirut)

  • Indie media as laboratories of social activism

10:00AM-10:45AM Panel discussion and Q&A from participants

10:45AM Networking Coffee Break

Examples of progressive media narratives & audience development strategies

11:15AM Moderator Lina Attalah(Mada Masr Cairo)

  • Editorial production as a site for progressive discourse between afflicting narratives and mediation for wider outreach
  • Audience building for sustainability and to engage other communities outside of our conventional readership

11:25AM Doa Ali (7iber Amman)

  • Audience building through editorial choices: Bringing the focus back to the story.

11:35AM Nick Malkoutzis (Macropolis Athens)

  • Confronting the editorial narratives of speculation and inaccuracy
  • How media narratives develop and evolve

11:45AM-12:45PM Panel Discussion, Examples and Q&A from participants


What are new sustainable business models, funding models and how do we monetize?

2:00PM Teun Gautier (The Cooperation Amsterdam)

2:35PM Maha ElNabawi (Mada Masr Cairo)

  • Revenue generation within knowledge based media economy of journalism

3:05-3:50PM Moderator: Michael Irving Jensen (International Media Support Copenhagen)

  • Panel Discussion and Q&A from participants
  • Sustainability and surviving in a fragmented and challenging financial & political media landscape

3:50PM Networking Coffee Break

The evolution of the career of the freelance journalist

4:20PM Marta Ottaviani (La Stampa Milan)

  • Challenges and bureaucracy as a freelancer: in home country and experiences as Greece & Turkey correspondent

4:30PM Laura Silvia Battaglia (Frontline Freelancer Register Milan)

  • Establishing independent freelancer network in MENA region and improving production standards
  • Local knowledge vs parachute journalists; addressing safety, training; instability not being a full-time team

4:40PM Iason Athanasiadis (freelancer Istanbul)

  • Career evolution of the freelancer: traditional & new media and experiences in MENA region

4:50PM-5:30PM Panel Discussion Q&A from participants

5:30PM Conclusions and Summaries from Day 1 from Moderators & Crowd-Sourcing Reports



8:15AM Morning Coffee 

8:50AM Intro to Day 2

How do we create cross-border & cross-platform collaborations?

9:00AM Moderator: Enrico De Angelis (Syria Untold Cairo)

  • Different approaches to collaboration: content, guest contributors, link-sharing, translations to native-language; overcoming the isolation of indie media in local markets

9:10AM Hamoud Almahmoud(Arab Reporters for Investigative Journalism Amman)

  • Having the right partners that can decipher local context of local data

9:20AM Alireza Jozi (TechRasa Tehran)

  • Media as a platform to connect and facilitate cross-border entrepreneurship and innovation

9:30AM Sotiris Sideris (Athens Live Greece)

  • Video and social media and building a community

9:40AM-10:45PM Panel Discussion and Q&A from participants

10:45AM Networking Coffee Break

 Migration is Europe’s moment of truth & the challenge for journalism

11:15AM Preethi Nallu ( Beirut)

  • Collaborative vs. Competitive – New Approaches to Journalism
  • Nurturing long term partnerships with journalists and media outlets
  • Crowd-sourcing expertise from the pool of academics, humanitarian agencies and policy makers working on migration.
  • Finding new ways of telling the story, while creating “relatability” and forming links between migration trends.

11:35AM Moderator – Discussion: Chris Elliott (Ethical Journalism Network & The Guardian London)

  •  Migration is Europe’s moment of truth & the challenge for journalism
  • Politically driven-agendas, media literacy, sensationalism, missed opportunities, falling standards, hate speech, self-regulation of indie media

11:45AM-12:45PM Panel Discussion and Q&A from participants


 Diverse editorial narratives through filmmaking & video

2:00PM Gelareh Kiazand (filmmaker Tehran)

  • How to address the careful balance of story-telling through fiction and documentaries without influencing the authenticity of story and characters

2:15PM Valantis Stamelos (filmmaker Izmir)

  • Sharing stories in English to international audiences as a cultural bridge to those exploring the depth of perspectives in the region

2:30-3:00PM Discussion and Q&A

3:00PM Networking Coffee Break

 3:30-4:30PM Summaries & Conclusions from Moderators & Crowd-Sourcing Reports:

  • What are the main takeaways and outputs from each conference session
  • Next steps for creating an annual meeting point between Europe & MENA for independent media & journalists
  • How will we enact and create on-going new synergies, processes and collaborations between journalists and indie media from Europe & MENA?

Sharing Knowledge

The format of the program and panel discussions is to analyze timely commercial & creative themes of the media industry through lively panel discussions with mixed-perspectives

Pitching Media Projects

Media start-ups will have an opportunity to pitch their projects to the audience and investors to seek partners and funding in the ‘pitch your media start-up’ session

Media Incubator

The aim of the conference is to encourage on-going commercial and creative synergies amongst publishers, media startups, filmmakers, journalists and advertisers within the East Med and internationally

East Med Media Nexus

We aim to invigorate the media ecosystem in the East Med and use media as a tool for social progress, innovation and cultural extroversion

Agenda Committee

Aegean Summit is a collaborative research-driven project and we’d like to give a special thanks to the advice of our agenda committee and partners that are turning this into a reality and annual forum.
  • Ayman Mhanna & Caroline Giraud: GFMD – Brussels
  • Aidan White: Ethical Journalism Network – London
  • Yavuz Baydar: journalist Platform24 – Istanbul
  • Ibrahim Nehme: The Outpost – Beirut
  • Iason Athanasiadis: journalist & film-maker Middle East – Istanbul

Mission of Aegean Summit


Why a Mediterranean & MENA Independent Media Summit?

The cities of Athens, Istanbul, Beirut, Cairo, Tunis, Amman and Tehran are seeing a wave of under-the-radar talent in media startups, publishing, bloggers, filmmaking, journalism and our goal is:

  1. To create an annual forum for media talent from the region to meet under one roof
  2. Create cross-border & cross-platform collaborations among independent media
  3. Engage international media and change the narrative with local perspectives from MENA & MED
  4. Panel discussions on monetizing, distribution models and diversifying revenue streams
  5. Long-term media incubator: pitch new projects, find partners and funders for startup media projects