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News Media Practice of Journalism

Newsroom Integration as an Organisational Challenge: Approaches of European public service media from a comparative perspective

In "Newsroom Integration As An Organisational Challenge”, published in Journalism Studies, Annika Sehl, Alessio Cornia, Lucas Graves and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen examine approaches of nine public service media (PSM) organisations in six European countries to newsroom integration from a comparative perspective. They find that despite the pressure to reorganise across platforms, full newsroom integration is still the exception at European PSM — and is not even always seen as desirable. The analysis also focuses on the interplay between internal and external variables and how this shapes organisational change.

The full article is available here.

Abstract: In this paper, we examine to what extent public service media (PSM) in six European countries have integrated or are integrating their newsrooms in order to adapt to an increasingly digital media environment. Based on 67 interviews over two years with senior editors and managers, this study constitutes the largest comparative analysis of newsroom change among PSM organisations conducted to date. Despite much talk of convergence, our empirical analysis shows that full newsroom integration remains the exception in this sector. Although all of the PSM studied experience pressure to reorganise across platforms, only two have achieved high levels of newsroom integration. Our findings suggest that centralising online news under a single operational roof — only recently undertaken and still incomplete at several PSM — is a necessary first step to more thorough editorial reorganisation across platforms. Our data also shed light on the complex ways that internal and external variables combine to shape organisational change: in addition to organisational challenges, we highlight broader historical, political, and economic factors affecting how PSM have responded to rapid technological shifts in the media environment.

KEYWORDS: Comparative analysisdigital journalisminterviewsnewsroom integrationpublic service media