Research Seminar: Introducing solutions journalism into UK local news

This event is part of the School of Media and Communication research seminar series.

Solutions journalism (SOJO) is being enthusiastically endorsed by news organisations around the world. There is now an established body of literature that evidences its positive impact on audience emotions (McIntyre 2020), engagement with the news (Meier 2018), public knowledge (Curry and Hammonds 2014) and psychological empowerment (Zhao, Jackson and Nguyen 2021).

Such research suggests that further newsroom integration of SOJO may have both commercial and public service benefits.

Yet, we know much less about the conditions under which SOJO is successfully (or not) integrated into newsroom practices, especially outside of the most well-resourced national newsrooms (Bro 2019). 

In this presentation, Professor Jackson will reflect on his experiences of the project "COJOAgainstCOVID", partnered with the Solutions Journalism Network and Newsquest (owner of over 120 local news brands).

He worked with colleagues to train and then mentor 62 local journalists from across England and Scotland in solutions journalism practice.

He will outline several structural factors that determine the successful implementation of SOJO, then document the model(s) of SOJO that emerged in response to the prevailing working conditions of local journalism.

Finally, he uses these findings as a point of reflection on what normative and practical models of SOJO the industry and the academy wish to pursue.

About the speaker

Dan Jackson is a Professor of Media and Communication at Bournemouth University. His research broadly explores the intersections of media, power and social change, including news coverage of politics, political communication, the mediation of sport and the dynamics of civic culture in online environments.

He has edited five books and is co-editor of the election analysis reports, published within ten days of major electoral events.

Daniel is the former convenor of the Political Studies Association’s Media and Politics Group and is currently Deputy Director of the Centre for Comparative Media and Politics Research at Bournemouth University.