Insights, tools and research to advance journalism

Research Review

These monthly features highlight academic research that could be relevant and useful to the news industry. We also hope that this series will spark ideas among academics with an interest in researching the news.

When journalists get their info from social media, audiences find the reports less credible

Press conferences, interviews, telephone calls — these are the traditional ways in which journalists source their stories. Today, however, many more options are available. From Facebook to Twitter to Google, journalists have many new ways to track down information to inform their reporting. But what do audiences think about these techniques? Do readers think social […]

Outsourced copy-editing doesn’t necessarily mean increased corrections

Newspapers have explored a variety of options to keep costs down, but one possibility —  outsourced copy-editing — comes with a substantial fear that the quality of a newspaper will decline because articles will be replete with errors. Copy editors housed in the newsroom are familiar with local facts and figures, the logic goes, and […]

How to assess the vibrancy of a community’s news ecosystem

Is there enough news produced by and for your community? How might you know? That question is increasing in both importance and difficulty, as traditional news sources falter or transform and new sources of information reshape the public’s behavior. During this time of large and uneven change in how much and what type of news […]

How hyperlocal news outlets are taking shape across the U.S.

A conventional impression of a hyperlocal news source is one person working tirelessly to solicit community involvement and fill a website. Although there is some truth to the reputation, recent research by Arizona State University assistant professor Monica Chadha shows that hyperlocals come in many different forms, some with more than 20 employees and some with […]

Interaction on Twitter enhances journalists’ credibility

Journalists can use Twitter in many different ways. They can reveal personal details or maintain a purely professional profile. They can interact with their followers or focus on tweeting news and information. Those choices journalists make about how to behave on Twitter can influence what people think about them, according to new research from assistant […]

How automated Twitter bots try to spread the news

When I hear about bots, or software designed to act like humans on social networks, the first thing that pops into my mind is automated accounts spewing spam across the Internet. Not all bots are bad, though. In fact, some Twitter bots are circulating valuable news and information, according to a forthcoming research article by […]

Managing change within news organizations

Although change is inevitable, some innovations are easier for newsrooms to adopt than others. How change fares has much to do with how the innovation is introduced and communicated. In their latest research, assistant professor Brian Ekdale from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Iowa teamed up with professor Jane […]

How social sharing varies by news topic and social platform

What causes some stories to catch fire on social media while others fall flat? Is it determined by indefinable qualities, or are there some elements that can be understood and controlled? According to new academic research published in Journalism Studies, the topic of the news and the social media platform play influential roles in how […]

Readers have mixed feelings about journalists interacting on Facebook

On Facebook, personal storytelling and interaction abound. For journalists, however, these practices seem to breach traditional norms that they should avoid entering the fray. But what about when journalists have Facebook pages? Should journalists engage, as Facebook norms suggest? Or avoid interaction, as traditional journalism norms dictate? New research by Dr. Jayeon Lee, assistant professor […]

How to integrate start-up culture in a traditional news organization

Newsrooms and tech start-ups have much in common. Both are fast-paced, have intellectually curious staff, and strive to stay ahead of the latest developments. But newsrooms also have long-standing routines that govern their day-to-day work and hierarchical management structures that are out-of-step with typical start-up culture. Injecting a bit of start-up ethos into the newsroom […]

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