The Media for Democracy Monitor 2021

How Leading News Media Survive Digital Transformation
Editor(s): Josef Trappel, Tales Tomaz

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To what extent do structures and conduct of leading news media correspond with requirements of contemporary democracies? Based on a root concept of democracy and several empirical indicators, the Media for Democracy Monitor (MDM) delivers a panorama of the news media’s performance regarding freedom, equality, and control across several countries. In 2011, the MDM analysed 10 democracies. Ten years later, it covers 18 countries worldwide and pinpoints essential strengths and weaknesses during this decade of digitalisation. Around the globe, news are highly attractive to users, and the journalistic ethos of watchdogs and investigators is paramount. On the downside, journalistic job security eroded over time, and gender gaps both in content and employment patterns remain strikingly excessive in most countries. 

Volume one contains countries present in the 2011 MDM edition, allowing for longitudinal comparative analysis: Australia, Austria, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. 

Volume two contains all countries analysed for the first time in 2021: Belgium (Flanders), Canada, Chile, Denmark, Greece, Hong Kong, Iceland, Italy, and South Korea.


Volume 1 

Josef Trappel & Tales Tomaz

1. Democratic performance of news media: Dimensions and indicators for comparative studies
Josef Trappel & Tales Tomaz

2. Australia: Media concentration and deteriorating conditions for investigative journalism
Tim Dwyer, Derek Wilding, & Tim Koskie 

3. Austria: Confirmed democratic performance while slowly digitalising
Manuela Grünangerl, Josef Trappel, & Tales Tomaz

4. Finland: Sustaining professional norms with fewer journalists and declining resources
Marko Ala-Fossi, John Grönvall, Kari Karppinen, & Hannu Nieminen

5. Germany: Solid journalistic professionalism and strong public service media
Christine Horz-Ishak & Barbara Thomass

6. The Netherlands: On media concentration and resilient freelance journalists
Hanne Vandenberghe & Leen d’Haenens

7. Portugal: Impoverished media struggling for survival
Joaquim Fidalgo

8. Sweden: Continuity and change in a more fragmented media landscape
Lars Nord & Torbjörn von Krogh

9. Switzerland: Highly concentrated leading news media in austerity and downsizing mode
Heinz Bonfadelli & Werner A. Meier, in collaboration with Michael Schanne

10. United Kingdom: Economic challenges, market consolidation and increasing professional insecurity
Martin Moore & Gordon Ramsay

Volume 2

1. Belgium (Flanders): News diversity put under pressure
Jonathan Hendrickx, Pauljan Truyens, Karen Donders, & Ike Picone

2. Canada: A strong foundation with an uncertain future
Gregory Taylor & Brooks DeCillia

3. Chile: Crisis of trust and a precarious industry
Enrique Núñez-Mussa

4. Denmark: High media independence and informal democratic traditions in the newsroom
Mark Blach-Ørsten, Rasmus Burkal, Eva Mayerhöffer, & Ida Willig

5. Greece: Media concentration and independent journalism between austerity and digital disruption
Stylianos Papathanassopoulos, Achilleas Karadimitriou, Christos Kostopoulos, & Ioanna Archontaki

6. Hong Kong: Free press under existential threat
Lo Wai Han & Wong Tin Chi

7. Iceland: A small media system facing increasing challenges
Valgerður Jóhannsdóttir, Jón Gunnar Ólafsson, & Friðrik Þór Guðmundsson

8. Italy: A highly regulated system in search of equality
Claudia Padovani, Giuliano Bobba, Alice Baroni, Marinella Belluati, Cecilia Biancalana, Mauro Bomba, Alice Fubini, Francesco Marrazzo, Rossella Rega, Christian Ruggiero, Simone Sallusti, Sergio Splendore, & Michele Valente

9. South Korea: Relatively healthy, still trying hard to adapt to digitalisation
Eun-mee Kim & Jae-woo Lee

10. Solid performance, but democratic deficits remain. Conclusions
Josef Trappel & Tales Tomaz