About

This project is made possible by a Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) Creative Industries Strategic Research grant.

About the project:

This project studies how digitalization enables and inhibits new habits and patterns of news consumption, and how news organisations can optimally cater to changing practices and preferences. It acknowledges that the power to select media is shifting from producers to consumers, facilitating a paradigmatic shift in journalism. To foster innovation, in-depth knowledge of these developments is necessary. By starting from the perspective of the user, this project confronts challenges on three key levels:

  • Economic – Despite heavy investment in technology to appeal to contemporary audiences, the news industry’s return on investment has been limited.
  • Academic – Despite growing research into the impact of digitalization on news, scholars have failed to capture audiences’ changing habits.
  • Social – Despite people’s need for public connection, the role of digital journalism in this equation has been only marginally explored.

This project addresses these challenges by undertaking large-scale, innovative, longitudinal audience research and triangulating these results with studies on journalistic production and content. This approach will generate knowledge that enables journalism to: a) adapt to changing needs and expectations of citizens as consumers and producers of journalism; b) offer information in a way that fits these changing preferences; c) preserve its democratic function and foster ‘public connection’; and d) develop new business models.

Internationally, news organisations face difficulties adapting to changing audience demands. This research places Dutch journalism at the forefront to create innovative services based on where, when, why, and how citizens value and use news and information in the digital age.

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