WJS 2021 - 2023

Mapping journalism’s hostile environment

The third wave of the Worlds of Journalism Study is currently underway. Researchers from more than 120 countries are surveying representative samples of journalists, this time focusing, among other topics, on journalists’ safety, deteriorating editorial freedom, influences on news production, the impact of technology, and increased precarization of journalistic labor. First results will be available in early 2024.

The Worlds of Journalism Study was founded in 2010 to assess the state of journalism throughout the world. The study’s main objective is to help journalism researchers, media practitioners and policy makers better understand the worldviews and changes that are taking place in the professional views of journalists, the conditions and limitations under which journalists operate, and the social functions of journalism in a changing world.

A joint effort of researchers from around the world, the project aspires to the highest standards of scientific collaboration and collective publishing. In so doing, WJS has become a driver of comparative research in journalism studies, and an institutional home for those who engage in it. The basic principles of cooperation are formulated in the study’s Statute. The study is hosted at LMU Munich and is funded by multiple organizations.

WJS 2012–2016

Transformation of Journalism

The second wave of WJS has continued and extended the work carried out through a pilot study in 2007–2011. Breaking all records in comparative media research, the study brought together researchers from 67 countries from around the world. In an unprecedented collaborative effort, the project network interviewed over 27,500 journalists based on a common methodological framework.

The questionnaire elicited views of journalists on several issues journalists and news organizations face today, such as journalism’s place in society, ethics, autonomy and influences on newsmaking, journalistic trust in public institutions, and the transformation of journalism in the broadest sense.

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Hanitzsch, T., Hanusch, F. Ramaprasad, J., & de Beer, A. S. (2019). Worlds of Journalism: Journalistic Cultures Around the Globe. New York: Columbia University Press.

Skjerdal, T. (2023). The challenge of competing loyalties for journalists in non-Western cultures. In B. Mutsvairo, S. Bebawi & E. Borges-Rey (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Journalism in the Global South (pp. 99–108). London: Routledge.

Jastramskis, D., Plepytė-Davidavičienė, G. & Gečienė-Janulionė, I. (2023). Professional Threats and Self-Censorship in Lithuanian Journalism. Filosofija. Sociologija, 34(4), 422–431.

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As a service to the wider academic community and individuals concerned with the state of journalism around the globe, the Worlds of Journalism Study offers a variety of useful resources:

The website contains detailed documentation of the study’s conceptual background and methodological procedures. Key results of the study are presented in the form of overview tables summarizing journalists’ responses to selected questions and in the form of standardized country reports.

The datasets from the completed two waves of the study (WJS1 and WJS2) are available for download and can be used for secondary analyses.

Read more…

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International Partners

International Federation of Journalists

Reporters Without Borders

European Journalism Training Association


Culturas Periodístas

Journalism Cultures Africa

WJS Canada

WJS Czech Republic