oa Global Media Journal - African Edition - More public and less experts : a normative framework for re-connecting the work of journalists with the work of citizens

Volume 3, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2073-2740



The potential of journalists to build a habit of participative and informed political discussion between government and citizens and between citizens and citizens has been eroded by a breakdown in trust between citizens and journalists. This breakdown is in part due to journalists being seen as experts favouring other experts as sources and marginalising the views of citizens - not just in relation to the covering of events but also in the investigation of possible solutions to public problem solving. This mirrors technocratic and expert-driven tendencies in government which further alienate citizens from the political process.

This essay uses three theoretical frameworks - democratic professionalism, public journalism and deliberative democracy - to explore the effects of expert-driven professionalism both in the state and in journalism and the implications of this approach for the relationship between journalists and citizens. It proposes that a shift in the way journalists consider their professional role could lead to a re-assessment of the political work of journalists and the political work of citizens and build new habits of participation and discussion in the political process of communities.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error