prof. dr. T.A.C. Witschge
NWO funded VIDI project (awarded May 2015, start November 2015)
Entrepreneurship at Work: Analysing Practice, Labour, and Creativity in Journalism
In a time when established legacy news media face significant challenges –crises in funding models, declining audiences, and fierce competition– new forms of journalism are emerging. These new forms differ from traditional journalism in fundamental ways and, thus, the ways in which information relevant to society is produced is undergoing major change. An emerging form of journalistic production is captured by the term ‘entrepreneurial journalism’, which is characterised by a precarious work culture of flex working, freelancing, and converging of personal and professional space and time. Entrepreneurial journalism not only challenges the professional and scholarly understanding of journalism, it also impacts the type of journalistic information available to the democratic public.
Characterised by ‘precarious’ and ‘atypical’ work cultures, research of emerging journalistic practices needs to address the volatility and complexity of the field. Conceptualising entrepreneurial journalism as open practice involving a variety of activities and actors, this project moves away from more conventional institutional, newsroom and genre-based understandings of journalism. Advancing an understanding of entrepreneurship as social phenomenon rather than focus on individual traits and actions it: 1) participates in and observes entrepreneurial work (auto-ethnographies); 2) analyses new categorisations and practices of journalism (ethnographies and interviews); 3) examines the economic and material factors impacting its sustainability (longitudinal survey); and 4) theorises the overarching practices of emerging forms of working in journalism and the challenges it contains.
Combining practice-based research with more conventional methods, this Vidi-project provides a comprehensive understanding of the practices in the various stages of the journalistic process. The central aim is to theorise emerging shared understandings, everyday work activities, and material contexts of entrepreneurial journalists to understand how these challenge traditional conceptualisations of journalism. Ultimately, it concludes whether these new practices form a sustainable alternative of informing society, enhancing the diversity of information available to democratic publics.
|Last modified:||09 June 2015 3.06 p.m.|