Conflicts in the newsroom: analyzing journalistic creativity

  • Wing Lam Chan

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    This study investigates how conforming and conflictual environment in media organizations contribute to the development of journalistic creativity. As a necessary prerequisite for institutional assimilation, media professionalism that learnt from school plays a stabilizing role in routine journalism operations. However, when principles disseminated in the classroom clash with practices in the newsroom, reporters typically find themselves caught in a fresh round of learning, relearning and even unlearning, a process that both demands conformity and opens up endless possibilities of creativity when rules are to be intentionally and tactfully breached. The two scenarios represent two distinct dimensions of the construct of journalistic creativity that are at odds with each other: consensual and conflictual. In explicating the concept, we bridge literature on media professionalism and political ideology in the hope of gaining a deeper understanding of how the tug of war between forces of compliance and those of oppositions is played out in the day to day work of journalism. This study adopts triangulation of methods, using both the in-depth interviews and surveys to explore the notion of journalistic creativity. The findings outline and explore the definitions and dimensions of journalistic creativity; identifies the creative process and the creative work within the media industry; and examines the relationship between political ideology, media professionalism and journalistic creativity. This study brings together two important aspects, conforming and conflictual environment, wherein media professionalism and political ideology are divided into two major categories, consistent and conflictual. In conclusion, this study contributes by putting forwarding the concept of journalistic creativity, the dimensions of journalistic creativity, and the major antecedents that contribute to journalistic creativity in the said media environments.

    Date of Award9 Aug 2017
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorSteve Z S GUO (Supervisor)

    User-Defined Keywords

    • Journalism
    • Management
    • Technological innovations

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