How do you get your news? Is it when you’re sitting down for breakfast reading the morning paper? Scrolling through Facebook at lunch to see which articles catch your eye? Maybe it’s after work when you lay down on the couch and turn on CBC to keep up with the latest news. The media is a crucial component when it comes to portraying Global issues and educating people around the world. With the help of broadcasting, publishing, and of course the internet, we now have access to an abundance of information that can be shared worldwide to address serious global concerns.

I am a student at Queen’s University majoring in Global Development Studies; a program which essentially addresses poverty on a Global scale, with an emphasis on development in the Global South. Global Development Studies can be broken down into subtopics which include sustainable development finance, global health policy, trade, new technologies, humanitarianism, environment and government.

Some examples of current events relating to Global Development in the media include topics like Costa Rica setting up to become the world’s first plastic-free and carbon-free country by 2020; the dispute involving the new anti-abortion legislation; the garbage emergency that has just been declared on the beaches of Bali due to the influx of tourism, the list goes on. This content can be accessed by people across the globe which brings awareness to the topic at hand and provides an opportunity for people to discuss, debate and find solutions.

Celebrity influence is another huge factor in Global Development as it uses the media as a vehicle to create significant awareness for research and organizations such as UNICEF, DATA, and RED. Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Angelina Jolie, and Beyonce are some examples of celebrities recognized as significant ambassadors for these movements. However, this is a controversial topic in Global Development as some claim celebrity involvement in humanitarian issues takes away from the campaigns and draws more attention to the celebrities themselves.

The trade issues that lay at the heart of Global Development have never been more relevant than today given the actions of the Trump administration. Free trade helps both developing and developed countries grow and enjoy the benefits that free trade provides. The damages of policies that abandon the core principles of free trade will best be prevented or minimized if the people affected are made aware. Media is the best source of this awareness. Today the media plays an important role in communicating the adverse effects of Trump’s trade fallacies. Media’s core purpose is to inform and provide people with information with which to act, challenge, and vote.

UN News is a great resource centre for Global information. An article on BIG DATA explains how investing data and making sure that it is used responsibly can solve some of the world’s biggest challenges (Claire Melamed, CEO of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data.) For more information on Big Data’s involvement in Global Development and Global Development News, go to