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Determinants of Mediatization. An Analysis of the Adaptation of Swedish Government Agencies to News Media

Conference contribution
Authors Magnus Fredriksson
Josef Pallas
Thomas Schillemans
Published in Rethinking the Mediatization of Politics
Place of publication 25-26 April 2014, London School of Economics and Political Science
Publication year 2014
Published at Department of Journalism, Media and Communication (JMG)
Language en
Subject categories Media and Communications, Business Administration, Public Administration Studies

Abstract

This paper seeks to explain why mediatization affects some governmental agencies more than others. An important dimension of our paper is to develop a measuring instrument for mediatization, and identify the salient driving forces behind variable levels of mediatization. To make sure that our analysis is comprehensive and productive strategy documents from all governmental agencies in Sweden (n=238) have been surveyed. The results show that agencies’ tendency to adapt to mediatization is mainly determined by the type management structures the agencies are set to apply. Single-director agencies and board agencies were significantly more mediatized compared to council agencies even when control variables - such as media coverage of the agencies, size, geographic location, and extend of political salience - were included in the analysis. Our results suggest that agencies - similarly to other political actors - might have substantial agency in terms of how they cope with mediatization pressures.

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