All RISJ Publications


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Here is a selection of publications published or co-published by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. 

The publications can be downloaded in PDF format, by clicking on the links, or right-clicking and choosing 'Save Target as...' to save the file directly to your computer.


Trust and Journalism in a Digital Environment

By Bernd Blöbaum

This paper examines the relationship between trust and journalism. Based on both a literature review and on empirical evidence, the paper explores journalism’s contribution to the creation of trust for other social systems, organisations and for individuals (trust through journalism) and looks at trust in journalism, particularly under conditions of digitalisation.

The Ethics of Journalism: individual, institutional and cultural influences

Eds Wendy N. Wyatt

This volume provides a comparative global analysis of the ethical challenges faced by the media in the twenty-first century, considering the various individual, cultural and institutional influences facing practicing journalists.

What If There Were No BBC Television? The Net Impact on UK Viewers

By Patrick Barwise and Robert G. Picard

This report is an independent contribution to the debate on the future of the BBC and uses a range of scenarios to compare the current UK television market with what it might be like if there were no BBC TV. 

Delving into the Discourse: Approaches to News Values in Journalism Studies and Beyond

By Helen Caple & Monika Bednarek

This working paper explores the extensive literature on the study of news values within Journalism and Media Studies and teases out the many different approaches to news values analysis.

Content Taxes in the Digital Age

By Kit Kowol and Robert G. Picard.

This policy brief explores suggestions that funds be raised to support content production through taxes on Internet service providers, telecoms and aggregators. It considers policy conflicts, revenue distribution, and the feasibility and sustainability of such measures.

Ask the Audience: Evaluating new ways to fund TV content

By Sian Kevill and Alex Connock

This report examines the evolving funding and distribution models for TV and video content and the global debate around editorial credibility, regulation, and effectiveness. It asks viewers what they think of content created in this way and demonstrates a surprisingly high tolerance of advertiser presence.

Political Journalism in Transition: Western Europe in a comparative perspective

Edited by Raymond Kuhn and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

This book examines how and provides a comprehensive and comparative analysis of the state of political journalism in Western Europe today, including the many challenges facing journalists in this important period of transition.

Transparency in Politics and the Media: Accountability and Open Government

Edited by Nigel Bowles, James T. Hamilton, and David A. L. Levy

This edited book analyses the challenges and opportunities presented to journalists as they attempt to hold governments accountable in an era of professed transparency.

How the Media Report Scientific Risk and Uncertainty: A Review of the Literature

By Teresa Ashe

Based on an extensive review of the academic literature, this study examines the media’s reporting of risk and uncertainty around environmental and health stories, summarising how, when and scientific stories involving them are reported, outlining theoretical approaches to media practices, and analysing the factors that lie behind the creation of news stories.

India’s Media Boom: the good news and the bad

Edited by James Painter

This book is a collection of timely essays about the extraordinarily vibrant – but seriously flawed – media landscape in India.  Contributors include India’s best known news presenter, Prannoy Roy, RISJ’s Director of Journalism John Lloyd and four former RISJ journalist fellows.

Media and Democratisation: What is known about the Role of Mass Media in Transitions to Democracy

by Nael Jebril, Václav Stetka and Matthew Loveless

This report explores what is known about the roles of the mass media in transitions to democracy. It offers a fundamental overview of thinking regarding democratisation through the media, and covers the major works, theories, and themes relevant to the study of mass media in transitional contexts.

Is there Still a Place for Public Service Television?

Eds. Robert G. Picard and Paolo Siciliani

This publications explores what is driving changes in broadcasting, how changes are altering the traditional economics of broadcasting systems and provision, and the implications for broadcasting policy.

Climate Change in the Media – Reporting Risk and Uncertainty

By James Painter

Drawing on the long-standing debate about how best to communicate the complexities of climate change, this book examines how the print media in six countries (UK, Australia, France, India, Norway and the USA) convey key messages of uncertainty, risk, disaster and opportunity.

Women and Journalism

By Suzanne Franks

Dealing with a highly topical subject and covering topics such as online abuse and onscreen sexism, this book provides an overview of the ongoing imbalances faced by women in the media and looks at the key issues hindering gender equality in journalism.

Crowdsourcing in Investigative Journalism

By Johanna Vehkoo

This report looks into how crowdsourcing can be useful in long-term journalistic investigations. It illustrates the method by introducing three case studies from the UK and Finland.

Media and Public Shaming: Drawing the Boundaries of Disclosure

Edited by Julian Petley

In this book, leading academics, commentators and journalists from a variety of different cultures, consider the extent to which the media are entitled to reveal details of people’s private lives, the laws and regulations which govern such revelations, and whether these are still relevant in the age of social media.

Digital News Report 2013

Eds. Nic Newman and David A. L. Levy

The Reuters Institute Digital News Report reveals new insights about digital news consumption based on a representative survey of online news consumers conducted by YouGov across 9 countries.

Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems and Journalism: Opportunities and Challenges of Drones in News Gathering

By David Goldberg, Mark Corcoran, and Robert G. Picard

This report summarizes issues raised by journalists, policy and legal specialists in the challenges posed by the use of unmanned aircraft in news gathering. It includes research to help news organisations evaluate the potential for use of these tools, to understand the broader context and issues surrounding their use, to consider how they might be used, and to assess the desirability of their use.

Is Watchdog Journalism Satisfactory Journalism? A Cross-national Study of Public Satisfaction with Political Coverage.

By Nael Jebril

This working paper examines the relevance of the watchdog journalism model to the general public. Drawing on panel surveys it examines the relationship between news media use, watchdog reporting perceptions and news satisfaction.

A Royal Charter for the Press: How does it measure up to regulation overseas?

By Lara Fielden

In this policy brief, published in conjunction with the Foundation for Law, Justice and Society, Lara Fielden examines the three key qualities Lord Justice Leveson recommended for future press regulation – that it is  ‘voluntary’, ‘independent’, and ‘self-regulatory’.

The Public Appetite for Foreign News on TV and Online

by Richard Sambrook, Simon Terrington and David Levy

This study looks at coverage of international issues on BBC TV and online. It reveals that online audiences for individual international stories are on average lower than those of the two main BBC TV news bulletins and that online selection of international stories often follows behind them being broadcast on TV.

Transformations in Egyptian Journalism

by Naomi Sakr

This study charts recent transformations in Egyptian journalism, exploring diverse approaches to converged media and the place of participatory cross-media networks in expanding and developing the country’s body of professional journalists. It analyses journalists’ initiatives for restructuring publicly-owned media and securing a safe and open environment in which to work.

Truth Matters: The BBC and Our Need for It to Be Right

by John Lloyd

The scandals which erupted within the BBC in November 2012 posed questions about the governance and the management culture of the BBC. In this report we illuminate the major areas of contention and debate, show what the underlying and often long-running problems in the management structure are and point to the main routes of future developments now in discussion within and about the BBC.

Ten Years that Shook the Media World

by Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

This report documents some very significant differences in how media companies in different countries have fared over the last decade, examining six affluent democracies (Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States) as well as two emerging economies (Brazil and India).

The economics of television in a digital world: What economics tell us for future policy debates

by Patrick Barwise and Robert G. Picard

This report explores the economic factors underlying television and the policy arguments that emanate from them in the all-digital television world. It reveals where differing perspectives and debates take place among economists and economic policy analysts and the roots of those differences.

News Plurality in a Digital World

by Robin Foster

This report examines the nature and scope of powerful new digital intermediaries such as search engines, social networks, and app stores and looks at their implications for plurality – both good and bad – in a fast-changing digital world.

Reuters Institute Digital Report 2012

The Reuters Institute Digital Report 2012 reveals new insights about digital news consumption across Europe and the United States.

Delivering Trust: Impartiality and Objectivity in the Digital Age

by Richard Sambrook

A review of the  debate in the US and the UK about the relevance of the journalistic norms of objectivity and impartiality in the digital age.


Why Documentaries Matter

by Nick Fraser

This study looks at the history of documentaries, showing how definitions of documentaries have changed – and how fragile is their funding. If we want good documentaries, Fraser concludes, we have to find ways of encouraging their creators.

Regulating the Press: A comparative study of international press councils

 by Lara Fielden

This report provides the most up to date and wide ranging comparative study of press councils overseas. It offers hard analysis and insight in an area often marked by entrenched positions and emotion.  Its aim is not to provide a blue print for a new UK model, but there are many positive lessons from international experience.

Survival is Success: Journalistic Online Start-Ups in Western Europe

by Nicola Bruno and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

This report is the first to systematically assess how journalistic online start-ups are doing across Western Europe. On the basis of analysis of nine strategic cases from Germany, France, and Italy, it shows that the economics of online news today are as challenging for new entrants as they are for industry incumbents. Survival in itself should be considered a form of success in this difficult and rapidly changing environment.

Squeezing Out the Oxygen - or Reviving Democracy? The History and Future of the TV Election Debates in the UK

by Ric Bailey

The impact of the TV debates during the 2010 Election campaign has led many to assume they will now become a permanent feature of UK general elections.  This first hand account of how those debates were negotiated also looks back on why it took 50 years for them to arrive in Britain and draws lessons both from that failure and the 2010 success to analyse the prospects for TV debates at the next general election.  The report examines the arguments over whether debates are appropriate for the UK’s parliamentary democracy, if they reduce elections to “X-Factor” politics or instigate a crucial improvement in democratic engagement.  It warns that, despite their galvanising impact on the 2010 campaign, especially for younger voters, future debates cannot be taken for granted if old difficulties recur and some new ones emerge.

Medical and Health News and Information in the UK Media: The Current State of Knowledge

by Robert G. Picard and Minhee Yeo

This report reviews what is known about medical and health news in UK media and shows that research on the subject is spotty, weak, and outdated. It suggests a research agenda for better understanding the roles and performance of UK media in conveying medical and health information. 

Beyond Commodification and Lifestyle Politics: Does Silvio Berlusconi provide a new model of politics for the 21st century?

by Paolo Mancini

This book argues that while there are aspects of the political adventure of “Il cavaliere” that  are linked to well-rooted aspects of Italian culture and history, at the same time Berlusconi represents the prototype of a new model of politics that can be identified in some other democracies— mostly in countries with similar features to Italy.

Poles Apart: the international reporting of climate scepticism

by James Painter

Poles Apart is a wide-ranging comparative study on the prevalence of climate scepticism in the media around the world. It focuses mainly on newspapers in Brazil, China, France, India, the UK, and the USA. It concludes that climate scepticism is found most frequently in the US and British newspapers and explores the reasons why this is so.

Regulating for Trust in Journalism: Standards regulation in the age of blended media

by Lara Fielden

In this book Lara Fielden reviews standards regulation across media platforms. She illustrates regulatory inconsistencies through a range of case studies, finds evidence of consumer confusion and provides examples of international responses to the challenge of convergence. She draws on her experience in both journalism and regulation to argue for a new regulatory settlement across the media. 


Scandal! News International and the Rights of Journalism

by John Lloyd

The reporting of news is now commodified; the market for gossip and scandal has grown greatly with the rise of the Internet and now constitutes an area of the media at once popular and at times politically powerful or destructive.  This study reveals the nature of one of the major trends of our time, and tells stories of those laying down the lines on its development.

Mainstream media and the distribution of news in the age of social discovery

by Nic Newman

Social media have helped UK newspapers and broadcasters gain traction around the world, but news organisations are becoming increasingly worried about the potentially disruptive effect of social media on their business models.  This paper offers an important contribution to understanding the implications of these changes for the quality of news and the future of journalism.

Is There a Better Structure for News Providers? The Potential in Charitable and Trust Ownership

Edited by David A. L. Levy and Robert G. Picard

This book explores the rationales and context of the push for charitable and trust structures, how structures affect control and operations of news organisations, and why they are important in the UK and elsewhere. It provides explanations of some of the most notable existing arrangements in the UK, France, Canada and the United States and how alternatively structured start-up news organisations are being created in the digital age.


Public Support for the Media: A Six-Country Overview of Direct and Indirect Subsidies

by Rasmus Kleis Nielsen with Geert Linnebank

This report examines the main forms of direct and indirect public sector support for the media in six developed democracies (Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States), shows how the main beneficiaries of the hundreds of millions of Euros worth of subsidies provided remain broadcast and print industry incumbents, and discusses the prospects for reform.

The new foreign correspondent at work: Local-national stringers and the global news coverage of conflict in Darfur

by Mel Bunce

This report examines the Sudanese-national journalists who provided an important portion of the global news coverage on the crisis in Darfur. The results point to a potential crisis in the discursive nature of contemporary international news.

Can it tweet its way to democracy? The promise of participatory media in Africa

by Abiye Megenta

In this report, we explore the changing ways in which citizens are chipping away the power of authoritarian regimes in Africa, including Egypt, through the use of online participatory media.

From their own correspondent? New media and the changes in disaster coverage: Lessons to be learnt

by Glenda Cooper

This research discusses how disaster reporting has changed since the 2004 tsunami and how a duet – aid agencies and the media – has become a trio with the introduction of user-generated content into the lexicon.

Leaders in the Living Room

Edited by Stephen Coleman

This study explores the first-ever British televised prime ministerial debates with a view to understanding how they were received by the public; how they were depicted in the press and on television; and how far they registered online. 

Trust in International News Media in partially free media environments

by Anne Geniets

This report examines attitudes to trust in domestic, regional and international news media across the whole population in five developing countries: Kenya, Senegal, Egypt, India and Pakistan.

Are Foreign Correspondents Redundant?

by Richard Sambrook

News organisations are having to adapt and redefine themselves in the face of turbulent changes to how we learn about the world.  In this study, author Richard Sambrook analyses the changes underway and points towards fresh ways of reporting the world. 

Are Foreign Correspondents Redundant?

The Global News Challenge: Assessing changes in international broadcast news consumption in Africa and South Asia

by Anne Geniets

This report examines changing news consumption patterns across the whole population in six African countries, India and Pakistan in the context of increased competition and media liberalisation in these eight markets.

The Changing Business of Journalism and its Implications for Democracy

Edited by David A.L. Levy and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

This book is the first systematic international overview of how the news industry is dealing with current changes and offers nuanced scrutiny of the threats and opportunities facing legacy news organisations across the world in countries as diverse as the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Finland, Brazil, and India as they transition to an increasingly convergent media landscape.

Summoned by Science

by James Painter

In this wide-ranging study, James Painter has produced a detailed analysis of the coverage of the summit across the globe through studying more than 400 articles published in two print media in 12 countries.  The analysis reveals that articles written principally about the science of climate change represented less than 10 per cent of all those surveyed. 

#UKelection2010, mainstream media and the role of the internet: how social and digital media affected the business of politics and journalism

by Nic Newman

This study examines the impact of social media on the UK election, looking in particular at the record breaking levels of participation among younger voters and the effect this had on the outcome.

Good News from a Far Country? Changes in International braodcast news supply in Africa and South Asia

by Brian Rotheray

This report is based on reviews of the main international broadcasters, news agenda analysis of local and international broadcasters and studies of the media environment in eight countries in Africa and Asia.

Investigative Journalism and Political Power in China

by Haiyan Wang

This working paper begins by asking whether or not investigative journalism in China takes the same adversarial position towards officialdom as do its Western counterparts and, if not, what the relationship looks like.

The rise of social media and its impact on mainstream journalism

by Nic Newman

This study by Nic Newman, Future Media Controller, BBC Journalism, examines how newspapers and broadcasters in the UK and US are responding to a wave of participatory social media, and a historic shift in control towards individual consumers.

Red Kayaks and Hidden Gold

by John Kelly

This report looks at the growing influence of ‘citizen journalism’, made possible by new technology available to all, and questions the relationship between both the journalist and the public in generating the news today.

Privacy, Probity and Public Interest

By Stephen Whittle and Glenda Cooper

This report aims to address some of the questions over the changing nature of privacy, which private matters can be revealed by journalists in the public interest and whether the increasing use of the Human Rights Act to safeguard an individual’s privacy is creating a ‘chilling’ effect on journalism.

Public Trust In The News: A constructivist study of the social life of the news

by Stephen Coleman, Scott Anthony & David E. Morrison

This pathbreaking study questions how far the news media are trusted by ordinary people and identifies the large implications for journalists.

A Shock to the System: Journalism, Government and the Freedom of Information Act 2000

by Jeremy Hayes

Jeremy Hayes of BBC Radio 4’s ‘The World Tonight’ and a recent BBC fellow at the Reuters Institute presents a progress report on the Freedom of Information Act. 

Skyful of Lies & Black Swans: The new tyranny of shifting information power in crises

by Nik Gowing

The study highlights how in a moment of major, unexpected crisis the institutions of power - whether political, governmental, military or corporate – face a new, acute vulnerability of both their influence and effectiveness.

What's Happening to Our News: An investigation into the likely impact of the digital revolution on the economics of news publishing in the UK

by Andrew Currah

Dr Andrew Currah examines the implications of this digital revolution, and offers recommendations for the way ahead.

The Two Professionalisms of Journalism: Journalism and the changing context of work

by Dr Henrik Örnebring

Dr Henrik Örnebring, Axess Research Fellow in Comparative European Journalism, analyses the changes in journalistic occupation.

Comparative European Journalism: The State of Current Research

by Dr Henrik Örnebring

Dr Henrik Örnebring, Axess Research Fellow in Comparative European Journalism, gives an overview of the current research in the field in his recent e-publication.

Counter-Hegemonic News: A case study of Al-Jazeera English and Telesur

by James Painter

In this pioneering study, James Painter examines two major and controversial new channels—the world network which is Al Jazeera English and Venezuela’s Telesur. 

The Web that Failed

by Floriana Fossato and John Lloyd 
with Alexander Verkhovsky

The promise of the internet is often held to be one of liberation. But how far is its reach and impact still dependent on the nature of the society in which it is being used.

The Power of the Commentariat

A report by Julia Hobsbawn and John Lloyd

Published by Editorial Intelligence Ltd, in association with the RISJ, this report is the first look at the subject of 'op-ed' comment and its role in shaping debates. How much power do the media commentators - the leader writers, columnists and bloggers - really have?

  • Download here
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The Price of Plurality: Choice, Diversity and Broadcasting Institutions in the Digital Age

Edited by Tim Gardam and David A. L. Levy

A joint publication between Ofcom and the RISJ, The Price of Plurality examines whether plurality can be sustainable in a fully digital and on-demand world. The book brings together a wide variety of perspectives on this critical issue, from producers and broadcasters, academic experts, politicians and policy-makers.