Success and Failure in News Media Performance

News studio.
Increasing consumption gaps, persisting gender inequalities, and an increasingly relevant role of investigative journalism. These are some of the key results presented in the third volume of The Media for Democracy Monitor 2021, published by Nordicom.
New publication
 | 9 March 2022

The Media for Democracy Monitor (MDM) evaluates the performance of leading news media in contemporary democracies. Based on the results from the individual country reports presented in the first two volumes of the 2021 MDM, the newly published third volume provides comparative chapters analysing patterns and tendencies across countries, with a particular focus on the influence of digitalisation.

"Substantive challenges prevail, such as gender inequalities in the news business, a high level of ownership concentration and severe consequences caused by increased commercialisation of news", Josef Trappel, co-editor of all three volumes, comments on the results.

"Furthermore", he continues, "new challenges, such as harassment of journalists, misinformation and eroding funds for investigation characterise the state of the art of leading news media".

Learn more about the MDM

The Media for Democracy Monitor is a largescale, diachronic project in which researchers from all around the world evaluate leading news media’s performance along 30 relevant indicators. The 2021 MDM was carried out by scholarly teams in 18 different countries.

"These local experts collected data in their country of expertise and residence, thus having insights into the development of leading news media, even beyond the research indicators", says Trappel.

The newly published comparative study addresses several stakeholders, and the results can be useful in various areas, according to the editors.

"News practitioners and media managers can find best practice examples on how common problems are addressed in other countries and can assess action in their own news organisations. Media politics can extract areas of contention and find inspiration from the comparative study", says Trappel. "Academics, finally, can use the book for teaching topics of relevance for democracy, making full use of examples from the 18 participating countries".

The Media for Democracy Monitor is a research project conducted by the Euromedia Research Group (EMRG), a network of researchers concerned with media structure and media policy in Europe and beyond.

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