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Strategies for Media ReformInternational Perspectives$
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Des Freedman, Jonathan Obar, Cheryl Martens, and Robert W. McChesney

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780823271641

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823271641.001.0001

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Reforming or Conforming?

Reforming or Conforming?

The Contribution of Communication Studies to Media Policy in Switzerland

(p.239) Chapter Nineteen Reforming or Conforming?
Strategies for Media Reform

Manuel Puppis

Matthias Künzler

Fordham University Press

For over 40 years communication studies in Switzerland has been involved in media policy-making. While these activities helped in institutionalizing communication as an academic discipline and provided policy-makers with much needed knowledge that is unaffected by vested interests, results show that most studies fell short of driving reforms that aim at more diverse and participatory media systems. Instead of suggesting progressive reforms, many scholars’ recommendations conformed to interests of political and media elites. The current media crisis, which led to new research devoted to critical analyses of ownership concentration, diversity and funding options for media as well as to the formation of a new federal media commission, should be seen as a chance to reform the media system. Direct subsidies to new independent online news organizations, strong support for public service broadcasting and restrictions of further consolidation of media ownership promise to conduce to a media system that is able to fulfil its function for democracy.

Keywords:   academic involvement in policy-making, communication studies, media policy, role of research, Switzerland

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