The journalist’s ‘toolbox’ of competencies in the Digital-Global Age: Reflections on the global state of research
The different crises that journalism continues to face worldwide make it imperative to talk about the journalist’s ‘toolbox’, a set of competencies that journalists must have in this so-called age of disruption. This article maps the global state of research on journalistic competence, offers ways of conceptualising journalistic competencies and provides the necessary context by which the development of the competency construct can be understood. What are the approaches in studying journalistic competence and what perspectives are dominant, clashing, or need to be challenged? The state of research shows an imbalance in perspectives: Studies on journalistic competencies are concentrated in US, Europe, and the Nordic states. The environments beyond the Western context or the ‘Global North’, so to speak, continue to be underrepresented, despite a strong research and journalism tradition unique to some of the Global South regions. Secondly, the industry perspective continues to dominate the discourse, although it has been described as hostile to innovation and critical reflection. The article ends with a call not just to further define and theorise journalistic competencies, but also to de-westernise the discourse.
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