Finland – Journalism Research and Development Centre

Brief description of the legal entity

Journalism Research and Development Centre (JRDC) engages in contract research and organises development projects and training related to journalism, publicness and new media. The Centre draws on strong domestic and international academic expertise and know-how combined with a practically-oriented approach to research problems. JRDC is institutionally connected to the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, which is the biggest communication department in Finland and the oldest teaching journalism in the whole of Scandinavia. Research in the Department covers the structures, contents and uses of the media; journalism in different and converging media and its role in society; the legal and ethical regulation of mass communication; media criticism; communication theory and history of the field. For further information see and

Main tasks/previous experience relevant to those tasks

The research team in JRDC will focus on MAS innovations on the online sector and their development, particularly in the USA. The research interest and the competence of the team is based on their previous studies on online journalism and blogging (David Domingo) and in public and civic journalism and comparative research on journalistic cultures (Heikki Heikkilä). As one of the coordinators of the Finnish team in the EU-funded AIM-project, Heikkilä gained experiences in the operation of an international research project.

Short profile of the staff member

Heikki Heikkilä, PhD, is senior researcher in the Journalism Research and Development Centre at the University of Tampere, where he coordinates audience research project “Towards Engaging Journalism”. Previously he has worked as senior lecturer at the Department of Communication, University of Helsinki, and as acting professor, senior lecturer, and research director at the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Tampere.

His research interests include the European public sphere, theories of public sphere and citizenship, as well as professional cultures of journalism, public journalism and citizen journalism. He has published articles in a number of international journals, including Journalism, European Journal of Communication, Communications and Javnost-The Public.

David Domingo, PhD, is assistant professor at the Communication Department of Universitat Rovira i Virgili (Tarragona, Spain). He was visiting assistant professor of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Iowa (2007-2008) and has been the academic co-ordinator of the Online Journalism postgraduate course of the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (2001-2007). In MediaAct project he will work as visiting researcher at JRDC in UTA. Domingo’s research interests relate to the development of online journalism, and more specifically, to audience participation in online media and its relationship with the redefinition of the professional identity of journalists and their role in modern democracies. During the stay in Iowa, he gained special expertise about the trends in the USA by working on a project comparing North-American and European cases which will be published as a book in 2010: Audience Participation in Online Newspapers: Guarding Open Gates (with Jane Singer et al.). Domingo is also the co-editor of Making Online News: The ethnography of new media production (with Chris Paterson).

Timo Kylmälä, MA, is a researcher and translator at the Journalism Research and Development Centre. His research interests include strategic communication and social media.

About MediaAcT

MediaAcT is a comparative research project on media accountability systems in EU member states as indicators for media pluralism in Europe.


Funded by the EC

Project funded under the Socio-economic Sciences and Humanties


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