This article begins by describing the recently created classifications of elements of constructive journalism and present examples of the media profession applying these elements. Constructive journalism draws on behavioural sciences, specifically positive psychology. From this, it is assumed that including constructive elements such as solution orientation, future orientation, depolarising techniques and seeking co-creation with the public contribute to the well-being of individuals as well as society. Following a public-oriented perspective, audience research is performed to understand how people value the incorporation of constructive elements in the news. Using an online survey, data were gathered from 3263 people in the Netherlands, aged 20–65. Results show an overall positive valuation, with some constructive elements appreciated more than others. Age, educational background and news interest seem to play a role in the nature of this valuation. Constructive journalism is steadily finding its way into journalism practice. There are also indications that people value news that incorporates constructive elements. It is important to further develop and define the concept in the coming years.
Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism – SAGE
Published: Apr 1, 2019
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