Redefining and Repositioning Public Service Broadcasting in the Digital and Multiplatform Scenario
An international Comparative Analysis within the European Union
Post-Doctoral Research Project funded by a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship for Career Development
Researcher in charge: Dr. Roberto Suárez Candel
Host Institution: Hans Bredow Institute for Media Research (Hamburg – Germany)
Scientific Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Uwe Hasebrink
Starting date: February 1st, 2010
Duration: 2 years
The configuration of a new digital and multiplatform scenario implies important changes in the structure, the business models and the reception patterns of the media system. In the case of Public Service Broadcasting/Media, the new context sets a clear inflection point concerning its position within the market and its role with regard to the society. In this sense, divergent opinions coexist: On the one hand, free market and competition are considered sufficient to guarantee not only the protection of those values that once legitimized PSB but also the fulfilment of its attributed functions. On the other hand, the new possibilities resulting from the digitalisation and the convergence of distribution platforms are regarded as an opportunity to improve the performance of public operators and thus offering a better service to the society.
This research project aims to investigate to what extent the mentioned transformation processes together with the pointed debate have an impact on Public Service. The main goal is identifying and analysing what strategies are implemented in order to redefine its remit and to reposition its operators in the new context.
Consequently, in the first part of the project, the current transformations affecting the media will be studied. New tendencies and operational logics will be identified. As a result, a theoretical model concerning the opportunities and challenges for public service broadcasters in the multiplatform scenario will be designed and contrasted with the current situation at the national cases selected for the international comparison (Germany, Poland and Spain).
Next, the research will be focused on the PSB adaptation strategies to the multiplatform scenario. The articulation of their elements – network of agents, goals and procedures – varies depending on the particularities of each national media market as well as on the political tradition of each state. Considering this diversity within the EU, the definition and development of these strategies in the selected countries will be compared.
Regarding the final objectives of this project, first of all, it has a strong theoretical ambition, wanting to contribute to the development of the PSB studies. Secondly, it aims to produce valuable pragmatic knowledge by means of detecting best practices among the adaptation strategies implemented in Europe. As a result from the analysis carried out, a list of recommendations for the different players involved in the redefinition and repositioning of PSB will be drawn.
Communication sciences, Media studies, Television studies, Public Service Broadcasting/Media, Digitalisation, Convergence, Multiplatform, Comparative Analysis, European Union, Germany, Poland, Spain
- How do the digitalisation and the configuration of a convergent multiplatform media scenario affect the values, functions and objectives that legitimize PSB?
- To what extent do those changes force to modify the theoretical conceptualization and the practical configuration of PSB?
- What are the main opportunities and challenges for public service broadcasting in the mentioned scenario?
- What kind of decision-making networks are working on the current transformation of PSB?
- What strategies are being implemented in order to redefine the remit of the public broadcasters and to reposition them within the multiplatform media market? Which are the most effective?
First part: “The Transformation of the Media Market and its Repercussions on PSB”
- A detailed picture of the current transformation processes affecting the media system.
- A reflection on how those transformations influence PSB (remit, organization and performance).
- A theoretical model of the opportunities and challenges for PSB in the multiplatform media scenario.
Second part: “Redefining and Repositioning PSB: Agents and Strategies”
- Conclusions on the application of Jarren et al. (2001) model regarding PSB decision-making networks.
- Conclusions on the international comparison of PSB decision-making networks, identifying patterns, tendencies and most effective practices.
- Conclusions on the contrast between the model of opportunities & challenges for PSB and the national realities. Identification of the most frequent goals concerning PSB adaptation.
- Conclusions on the role and independence of public broadcasters when designing and implementing adaptation strategies.
- Identification of patterns regarding adaptation strategies and evaluation of their effectiveness.
- Conclusions on the influence of supranational policies over national strategies.
As final outcome of the project and the international comparison carried out:
- Identification of best practices concerning the strategies for redefining and repositioning PSB.
- A list of recommendations for national agents involved in that adaptation process.
- A list of recommendations for supranational bodies.
Almiron, N.; Llorens, C.; Segovia, A.I.; Bas, J. J.; Grau, H. P.; Suárez Candel, R. (2012): External Pluralism Protection in Five EU Countries and the U.S.: The Regulatory Authorities’ Views. In: Observatorio (OBS*), vol. 6 (1), pp. 129-157.
Suárez Candel, R. (2011): Televisió híbrida: un pas necessari per sobreviure a l’entorn multiplataforma [Hybrid Television: A Necessary Step to Survive in the Multiplatform Scenario]. In: D. Fernández-Quijada (Hrsg.), Medi@TIC: anàlisi de casos de tecnologia i mitjans. Barcelona: UOC, pp. 95-117.
Suárez Candel, R. (2011): Public Policy Best Practice in the Field of Digital Terrestrial Television: Lessons from Sweden and Spain. In: International Journal of Digital Television, vol. 2 (3), pp. 297-321.
Bas, J. J.; Segovia, A. I.; Llorens, C.; Almiron, N.; Grau, H. P. & Suárez Candel, R. (2011): Communication Policies and the Protection of Pluralism in the European Union and the United States. In: Comunicación y Sociedad, vol. 24 (2), pp. 41-75.
Suárez Candel, R. (2010): Book Review of “Lowe, G. F. (ed.) (2010): The Public in Public Service Media. RIPE@2009. Göteborg: Nordicom”. In: Medien & Kommunikationswissenschaft, 2010 (3), pp. 431-433.
Suárez Candel, R. (2010): Rezension zu “Lowe, G.F. (ed.) (2010): The Public in Public Service Media. RIPE@2009. Göteborg: Nordicom”. In: Quaderns del CAC, 35, pp. 95-96.
“Das Multiplatform-Szenario in Europa”, participation of R. »»
“Redefining and Repositioning Public Service Broadcasting in the Multiplatform Scenario: Challenges, Opportunities and Risks”, presentation by R. Suárez Candel at the workshop “The Adaptation of Public Service Broadcasting to the Multiplatform Scenario” organised by the Hans-Bredow-Institut, 6 February 2012 at the Hase Office in Brussels, Belgium.
“The Offers of Public Service Media in Germany”, presentation by R. Suárez Candel at the conference "European Identity and Diversity – European Integration in the cross-media Public Service Perspective" organized by Prix Italia und Infocivica, 19 September 2011 in Torino, Italy.
“Adapting PSB to the European Commission’s requirements concerning State Aid the situation in Germany”, lecture by R. Suárez Candel in Exeter (UK) on 1 July 2011.
“El Nuevo modelo de servicio público en la era digital”, participation of R. Suárez Candel in a discussion panel at the conference “La Radiotelevisión Pública y el Porvenir de la Democracia en España” organised by UNED and Foro Teledetodos, 11 May 2001 in Madrid, Spain.
“Technology Transformations of the Media System and their Impact on Public Service Broadcasting”, Expertise by R. Suárez Candel for AEF Consultants in Utrecht (Netherlands) on 21 April 2011.
"Beyond Television and Beyond the Internet: PSB Strategies for a Multiplatform Media Scenario”, presentation by R. Suárez Candel at the ECREA 2010 International Conference, 15 October 2010 in Hamburg.
"Building European Research Networks. Promises and Pitfalls of Collaborative Research", participation of R. Suárez Candel in Plenary Session II of the ECREA 2010 Conference, 14 October 2010 in Hamburg.
"Planning an Academic Career: International Perspectives", participation of R. Suárez Candel in a panel organised by YECREA at the ECREA 2010 Conference, 13 October 2010 in Hamburg.
"Public Service Media in Germany: Normative Framework and Current Technical Developments", preentation by R. Suárez Candel at the conference "European Identity and Diversity – European Integration in the cross-media Public Service Perspective", organised by Prix Italia, 21 September 2010 in Torino, Italy.
“The Boundaries of Public Service in a Multiplatform Media Scenario”, presentation by R. Suárez Candel at the conference "RIPE@2010 - Public Service Media after the Recession", 10 September 2010 in London.
"Hybrid Television: Opportunities and Challenges for Public Broadcasters to Improve their Service to the Citizenship", presentation by R. Suárez Candel at the "IAMCR 2010 International Conference" on 20 July 2010 in Braga, Portugal.
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