The pandemic has brought significant changes and uncertainties to all aspects of life, emphasizing the critical role of the media industry in providing up-to-date information and entertainment during times of crisis. However, the pandemic has also hit the media industry severely, with massive losses in advertising investments and increased unemployment rates. Even before the pandemic, Austria's media industry was facing challenges due to shrinking revenues, declining readership, and outflow of advertising budgets. Accordingly, this project aims to understand which transformation processes the COVID-19 pandemic initiated or forced for the Austrian media industry and what chances could arise from it.
For this, the Institute for Comparative Media and Communication Studies (CMC) and the University of Klagenfurt will join forces to understand the impact of the pandemic, both locally and globally, and to analyze the economic, management, and cultural implications of these changes for Austria's media development. In addition, the project will assess the journalistic performance of Austrian news media during and after the pandemic and compare Austria's media industry's specific characteristics and development trends internationally.
The project will use qualitative and quantitative research methods, including market analysis, qualitative expert interviews with media managers and advertising industry representatives, and a survey of media professionals from all sectors to understand changes in media production and practice. The team will also conduct quantitative surveys to assess changes in media usage behavior, media reception, and media performance during and after the pandemic.
The project's findings will shed light on unique characteristics and trends within the Austrian media industry and offer insights into international trends. This research will support the industry's growth and sustainability by providing media managers with the necessary tools to make informed policy decisions and develop effective strategies.