FSD3529 Media and Power 2019

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  • Reunanen, Esa (Tampere University. Communication Sciences Unit)
  • Kunelius, Risto (Tampere University. Communication Sciences Unit)


authority, communications, decision making, journalism, mass media, political power, politics, social media, social systems, trust


The survey charted the relationship between political decision-making and the media in Finland. The survey was conducted as part of the 'Mediatization of governance. A study on media power in economic and environmental policy networks' (MeGo) research project, funded by the Academy of Finland. The respondents included people in influential positions in eight different sectors: trade and industry, politics, government, justice system, police, trade unions, research, and civic and cultural activities.

First, the respondents' views were examined on various statements regarding political decision-making in Finland, for example, whether policy-makers at the national level aimed to make decisions that would benefit all Finns and whether citizens' opinions were nowadays better conveyed to policy-makers through the media than through political parties. The respondents were asked about the source of their own authority and influence (e.g. their official position, their organisation's financial resources, their expertise, or their media presence and public image) as well as their opinions on how the authority or influence of various public actors in Finland (e.g. trade unions, EU, social media, the church) had changed in the past decade.

Next, the respondents were asked how often they followed traditional or online media, e.g. different newspapers, news broadcasts, or discussion forums. The respondents' opinions on their communication with journalists, e.g. whether they thought being contacted by journalists was more intrusive than useful, were surveyed, and the respondents were asked how often they personally appeared on various new outlets (e.g. nationwide TV channels, interviews in newspapers). Additionally, the respondents' work-related social media presence was charted, and they were asked how often they had been subjected to offensive feedback or hate speech because of their job. Finally, the respondents' views were examined on various statements regarding their and their organisation's communication with and through the media, the influence of the media on their and their organisation's actions, and the characteristics of public discussion and journalism in the context of decision-making.

Background variables included the respondent's age group, sector of activity, position, and gender.

Study description in machine readable DDI 2.0 format

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