17 December 2015

Nete Nørgaard Kristensen's joint research project granted Arts Council Norway's appropriation

The joint research project "A Question of Quality? Nordic cultural critique in the media and the negotiation of popular culture" has been granted Arts Council Norway's grant within the council's research programme "Kunst, Kultur og Kvalitet" (Translation: "Art, Culture and Quality"). The grant is a sum of 674.000 NOK.

"A Question of Quality? Nordic cultural critique in the media and the negotiation of popular culture" is a joint research project between Nete Nørgaard Kristensen from MCC, University of Copenhagen, Kristina Riegert from the Department of Media Studies, University of Stockholm, Karl Atle Knapskog from the Department of Information Science and Media Studies, University of Bergen and Heikki Hellmann from the School of Communication, Media and Theatre, University of Tampere.

According to Nørgaard Kristensen "The project investigates the quality parameters of cultural critique in mainstream media at a time when traditional concepts of quality are under pressure. Commercialized media environments and cultural industries’ news management increasingly influence what, when and how cultural objects are discussed and reviewed in institutionalized news media. At the same time, technological developments have enabled extensive public participation in cultural debate outside of established media institutional frameworks, which has deepened the sense of crisis, especially of the cultural press, since the agenda-setting nature of the cultural review as the primary critical genre is contested.

The project aims to provide the first, extensive Nordic analysis of the negotiation of quality in cultural articles and reviews by answering the research question: how have media institutional, technological and professional changes provided new ways of framing artistic and cultural quality in the Nordic news media? The project’s comparative approach investigates how quality criteria are discussed in Danish, Swedish, Norwegian and Finnish media when assessing two popular culture objects: bestsellers and TV-series. It asks what national and/or transnational quality parameters characterise the news media’s analyses, debates and reviews?"

As part of the grant the research project will contribute two chapters for a book project by the Art Council, but the plan is also to produce a chapter for a Nordic anthology on Cultural Journalism in the Nordic Countries (edited by Nete Nørgaard Kristensen and Kristina Riegert, to be published by NORDICOM by early 2017) and one or two international journal articles. Furthermore, the project is planning on presenting a paper at the 6th European Communication Conference (ECREA).