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Title: The socio-cultural dynamics and 'survival struggle' in professional journalism practice in Nigeria
Author: Obateru, T. C.
ISNI:       0000 0004 6500 0415
Awarding Body: University of Salford
Current Institution: University of Salford
Date of Award: 2017
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This study responds to the call for more empirical work to understand the journalism profession in non-Western countries. It critiques the current state of journalism practice in Nigeria to determine how journalists are responding to the numerous professional challenges they face. Journalists in Nigeria appear caught between global phenomena in journalism, such as the impact of new technologies, and those of the environment in which they work, which, some evidence from current literature suggests, is impacting the profession negatively. The literature also shows that factors such as diversity of access to information made possible by technological development, declining audience for news, increasing market pressures impacting news decisions, the declining reputation of the profession, and loss of identity by the journalism profession, though not necessarily peculiar to Nigeria, constitute serious challenges to the news media. With an absence of media conglomerates and a well-defined media system along the lines of those recognised in the developed world, journalism practice in Nigeria presents a case ripe for research. Some evidence in the literature suggests that the standard of journalism practice in Nigeria is deficient in a number of respects. However, little is known about how journalists in Nigeria do their work and the challenges they face, as well as their responses to those challenges. This thesis addresses this particular gap in knowledge. Using the Field Theory and the Social Theory of Journalism, as framework to interrogate the research problem, the research employs convergent parallel mixed methods allowing the use of quantitative and qualitative methods, side-by-side, to gather data in respect of attaining its objectives. Quantitative data were generated through a questionnaire-based survey, while qualitative data were gathered through a series of semi-structured interviews. The research finds that, and illustrates how, the operating environment they face, impacts journalists in their work. Challenges, such as poor or irregular salary, ownership influence, market and social forces were found to influence the way in which journalists perform. However, a key finding is that that although journalists encounter similar challenges in the course of their duties, their response to them varies. Based on these findings, and drawing on explanatory insights from Field Theory and the Social Theory of Journalism, the thesis develops its own explanatory framework coined, The Survival Struggle in Journalism Practice in Nigeria. This leads to the presentation of a series of recommendations, prominent among which is argument that the institutional and regulatory framework of journalism needs immediate strengthening in order to secure an appropriate standard of professional journalism practice in Nigeria.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available