Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Gender differentiation in media industry

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
5.06.03  Social sciences  Political science  Communication science 

Code Science Field
S265  Social sciences  Press and communication sciences 

Code Science Field
5.06  Social Sciences  Political science 
gender differentiation, media, political economy of communication, equality, intersectionality, medua production, media consumption
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (11)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  24767  MSc Mojca Frelih  Social sciences  Researcher  2016 - 2018  174 
2.  18944  PhD Majda Hrženjak  Anthropology  Researcher  2016 - 2018  345 
3.  28994  PhD Živa Humer  Social sciences  Researcher  2016 - 2018  244 
4.  37694  MSc Maja Jančič  Economics  Researcher  2017 - 2018  89 
5.  24365  PhD Dejan Jontes  Social sciences  Researcher  2016 - 2018  281 
6.  07633  PhD Breda Luthar  Political science  Researcher  2016 - 2018  412 
7.  21687  PhD Mojca Pajnik  Political science  Head  2016 - 2018  607 
8.  21686  MSc Brankica Petković  Political science  Researcher  2016 - 2018  224 
9.  22331  PhD Maruša Pušnik  Political science  Researcher  2016 - 2018  374 
10.  37416  PhD Marko Ribać  Political science  Researcher  2016 - 2018  38 
11.  20544  Irena Salmič    Technical associate  2016 - 2018 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0366  Peace Institute  Ljubljana  5498295000  3,581 
2.  0582  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Sciences  Ljubljana  1626957  39,490 
Scientific background The project deals with the processes of gender differentiation in the media industry reproduced through the media’s convergence, conglomeration and commodification in the context of the rise of information and communication technologies. Departing from the finding about the lack of suitable epistemologies and methods to adequately address gender differentiation in the media, GENMED introduces theoretical starting points of the feminist political economy of communication which highlights the need for synergy of the macro, mezzo and micro levels of research or presumes structural and institutional analysis combined with the experiences of actors who work in the media industry or participate in it as consumers. The starting point is that gender relations are not only constituted in relation to the means of production, but also to reproduction, reproductive work and consumption. GENMED introduces a feminist inclusive conceptualisation of gender which studies gender relations by integrating the perspective of intersectionality through which it identifies the intertwinement of gender with ethnicity, sexuality etc. that produces discriminatory effects.      Problem definition Analyses point to numerous patterns of gender inequality in the globalised industry of the mass and Internet media. Editorial and managerial positions are mainly occupied by men, women have fewer opportunities for career advancement, lower wages, occupy more precarious positions, and are more often included in non-standard forms of work. Gender differentiation is also shown at the level of the production of news that creates unambiguous images through the sexualisation of gender, under-representation of women as subjects of news, and representing women as more suitable for health care and social spheres rather than the economy and politics. In the Slovenian context, there is a lack of research thoroughly examining the mechanisms and practices of gender differentiation in the media. The prevalent studies of gender representation need to be integrated, and the structural relations of media production and consumption in post-transitional Slovenia need to be researched, which has not yet been done.   Relevance, research aims and impact GENMED directly addresses gender inequalities and aims to analyse gendering at the intersection of media policy, production and consumption in the chosen media in Slovenia, to contribute to the promotion of programme policies, mechanisms and contents that support equal opportunities principles. It also aims to open the research field that has been overlooked in Slovenia. Filling this gap is expected to have impact on further development of the field both in Slovenia and internationally. It aims to revitalise the overlooked theoretical approaches which enable the problems of the media and gender to be considered at the intersections of micro and macro structures and work practices in the media industry.   Originality and research methods With the overlooked feminist political economy of communication in the centre of its analysis, the project enables an integrated study of gender as experience, placed within the structural characteristics of a capitalist and gendered society. The empirical research is based on the »mixed methods« approach. The first phase of the project is a historical comparative analysis to gain an insight into the development of media policies in Slovenia from the gender aspect, and also policy analysis and frame analysis combined with interviews with employees in selected media. Gendered media production will be examined with a combination of methods: document analysis, discursive analysis, interviews and participatory observation in selected media institutions. Typical patterns of gendered media consumption will be identified through a standardised questionnaire on a representative sample of the Slovenian population. Focus groups will be carried out, and selected respondents’ diary note
Significance for science
GENMED contributes to the development of research into gender differentiation in the media, reconceptualises the existing approaches, brings innovative epistemological findings and empirical results on gendered media system in Slovenia, which has not yet been the subject of detailed analysis, by: - developing theoretical approaches of the feminist political economy of communication (FPEC) which in the past three decades was overlooked in international debates, while in Slovenia it has not yet been a subject of analysis; - developing the integrated FPEC approach that unlike the prevailing approaches in political economy of communication addresses the intersections of material and cultural perspectives, and considers production together with reproduction including consumption as the key processes, through which gender differentiation occurs in the media industry; - the approach that is rarely used in the analysis of the media industries, namely, multi-level analysis, i.e. analysis at the intersection of macro structures of digital capitalism, mezzo organisational level of media institutions and micro level of symbolic construction of meaning – for a systematic analysis of gendered media system; - theoretisation of gender from feminist perspective, by introducing inclusive gender to study relational dynamics between genders, and through considering intersectionality for the understanding of complex inequalities in the media industry; - systematic analysis of gender differentiation of the media system in Slovenia, with the emphasis on the study of television and online gendered information and documentary genres to fill the gap in the analyses of the media system in Slovenia. We will study the gendered policies, production and consumption, focusing on join effects of gender, work production, social reproduction (family, life cycle and caring responsibilities) and consumption; - the use of “mixed methods approach”; the project team will not be satisfied with just providing data on the relative position of women and men in the media industry, which prevails in the rare studies on gender in media production. Detailed analysis at the levels of policy, production and consumption will be carried out with the use of different qualitative and quantitative methods: policy analysis, frame analysis and discursive analysis, participatory observation, interviews, focus groups, diaries, standardised questionnaire on the representative sample; - the strategy of the dissemination of results which addresses the relevant public, both scientific and professional, and media industries and general public in different ways (publications, press releases, publications in the media etc.)
Significance for the country
The project aims to analyse gender differentiation in the media industry at the intersection of media policies, processes of production and consumption in selected media in Slovenia. Direct relevance of GENMED for economy and society, and specifically for the media industries and general public lies in its contribution to the promotion of programme policies, mechanisms and contents that support gender equality principles. In the centre of the media analysis from the perspective of political economy are questions of media systems in the time of financial crisis, relationship between the media and the state, consequences of the rise of ICT that stays in the hands of the “dominant” research, and which still excludes feminist perspectives. Putting gender in the focus of the analysis is highly relevant in revealing gender inequalities in television and online media in Slovenia.   GENMED is expected to highlight the need to systemic solution of the problem of gender inequality in the media, which would include education and training for the leading personnel and all employees, especially raising awareness on equal opportunities of women and men, introduction of measures at systemic, national level, and at the level of media institutions, which would legally encourage gender equality in the relation between productive and reproductive work. The project is also expected to point to the need to provide opportunities for gender equality in employment, pay system, representation in organisational structures at different levels.   It is also necessary to provide the widest possible awareness and support to media workers to produce quality contents that are not gender biased. It will also importantly contribute to the awareness of gender differentiation in the audience. The engaged research in the field including interviews and focus groups with the employed in media institutions, and participatory observation is expected to empower the personnel and media institutions and increase awareness of the importance of gender equality.   The dissemination strategies of the popularisation of science or presentation of project results are expected to increase awareness of the dimensions of gender (in)equality both in the media and in society. The project is directly relevant also for selected media institutions, the public broadcaster RTV SLO and the private POP TV, and for the two online media rtvslo.si and 24ur.si. Direct relevance also lies in the project’s contribution to raising awareness about the legislation in gender equality in Slovenia, while at the same time the project addresses problems highlighted in the Resolution on the National Programme for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men 2015-2020.
Most important scientific results Interim report, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Interim report, final report
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