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Abstract

The creative industries have had a major impact on cultural policy, and it is often argued that these industries can be a vehicle for regional growth. Using regional film production in Norway as a case, I discuss the creative industries, the cluster concept and its impact on policy. I analyse two film policy documents from 2007 and 2015 in order to show how the issue of size and critical mass is an unsettled topic within the creative industries, and I question the relevance of film as an economic and regional development tool in a country with a small film industry, such as Norway. This article shows that the creative industries concept, adopted from international discourses, especially creative industries policies in the UK, has influenced Norwegian film policy, reducing the importance of cultural objectives and increased the focus on the business potential and economic aspects of culture.

Abstract

The domestication concept, originally developed in Britain in the context of media appropriation in households’ everyday life, has seen a relatively high uptake in the Nordic countries from early on. This was by far not only an application of the concept, but an alternative interpretation with different emphases. I introduce two major strands of this uptake in this article: the Norwegian science and technology studies interpretation, and the primarily Finnish consumer and design research interpretation. These case studies will help answer the question of the degree of Nordicness in these interpretations of the domestication approach. In a last instance, the article aims to address the question what the current – and hopefully future – state of domestication research in the Nordic countries could look like.

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Abstract

The Swedish national parliamentary election of 2018 took place amidst considerable concern over the role of misinformation. This paper examines the role of digital media during the election against the background of the Swedish media system. It focuses on the role of bots and how they supported the Sweden Democrats, whose agenda was also promoted by anti-immigrant alternative news websites. This article reports on a study of Twitter that used computational techniques to distinguish bots from genuine accounts across hashtags related to the election and Swedish politics (such as #valet2018). I examine which parties are supported and criticised by bots and by genuine accounts, and discuss the content of the tweets. In this article, I place bots in the context of broader debates about the role of digital media in politics and argue that misinformation and alternative news websites will demand continued future vigilance.

Abstract

In this article, I discuss how the world's smallest states, including Iceland, are routinely absent in research and comparative studies concerning media and politics. Size has up until now mostly been ignored as a possible factor in understanding media systems and the relationship between media and politics on the national level. Existing research from other academic fields, such as public administration and economics, has revealed an important finding: small states have unique characteristics that differentiate them from larger states. They can therefore not simply be viewed as smaller versions of large states that have been central in knowledge production. Arguably, a Nordic perspective in media research needs to incorporate the size variable into the research agenda. This article illustrates how this expanded agenda will enrich our understanding of media and politics in the Nordic countries and open up new areas of study on small and large states more generally.

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Abstract

In media systems theory, the Nordic countries are often held to constitute a specific media system (). In this article, we put this claim to the test in the area of news consumption. Based on findings about the four Nordic countries Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Finland in the annual Reuters Institute Digital News Report (), and inspired by previous studies of the audience dimension of media systems (; ; ), we undertake a descriptive empirical analysis of the 2019 data of this 38-country study. Our study compares news audience practices in the Nordic countries with those of countries belonging to other supranational media systems. We find that while there are some internal differences within the Nordic media system, there are salient news consumption commonalities that are specific to the Nordic countries, such as preferred sources of news, pathways to news, paying for online news, and trust in the news.

Abstract

During 2017 and 2018, the #metoo hashtag united a global movement against sexual abuse and harassment. In Sweden, a large portion of the attention was given to the voices of working women, who organised and wrote petitions that were published in news media. Previous research has found that media reports of sexual abuse often focus on singular stories, rather than describing the underlying structural problems, and that the problem is often framed as an individual rather than structural problem. This article accounts for a qualitative content analysis of the first 28 published #metoo petitions in Sweden, with the goal of understanding how these framed the issue. In contrast to previous research, this study shows how the petitions established a coherent feminist explanatory framework that placed the problems on a structural level by focusing on work environments and framing demands in terms of general and perfectly reasonable human rights.

Abstract

Since the 1960s, there has been a thriving Nordic tradition of media literacy research, pedagogics, and policy on how to best prepare the emerging media citizen for an increasingly mediatised society. Although the Nordic model of media literacy has previously been characterised by connections to Bildung, critical theory, cultural studies, and progressive pedagogics, much of today's understanding of media literacy is associated with a more instrumental understanding of education, with connections to the commercialisation and digitalisation of compulsory education. By suggesting a historisation of the Nordic media literacy tradition, in connection to the Nordic media welfare state, this article opens a debate about the future directions of Nordic media literacy.

Abstract

Based on an overview of Anglo-American stocktaking of media and communication studies, this article situates Nordic media studies as a third route staked out between academic binaries of administrative and critical approaches. The key argument is this: Nordic media studies displays distinctive features of development that are shaped by Nordic welfarist ideals from the 1970s and 1980s rather than by international trends in the academy. Furthermore, these ideals are worth holding on to if the field of media studies is to thrive with quality and relevance in a globalised, connected, and deeply datafied platform society. I take media studies – not communication studies – as my point of departure, since this is the most feasible umbrella term when studying current modes of communication that are technologically mediated in ways that can be stored, shaped, and shared across time and space.

Abstract

In 2014, Syvertsen, Enli, Mjøs, and Moe authored The Media Welfare State: Nordic Media in a Digital Era to explore the specificities of Nordic media and the analogy between welfare state and media structures. In this short article, we point to how selected works challenge or extend the notions of a media welfare state beyond the original analysis. We begin by placing the work in a tradition of comparative and typology-generating scholarship and point to parallel works emerging at the same time. We then highlight others’ contributions in order to identify tendencies in Nordic media and research. In conclusion, we use examples from current research to argue that changes in the media system may be studied from both the angle of changing media policies and that of changing welfare states.