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Journalism as research: Developing radio documentary theory from practice

Lindgren, Mia (2011) Journalism as research: Developing radio documentary theory from practice. PhD thesis, Murdoch University.

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Journalism academics around the world face the challenge of having their journalism practice recognised as academic research. This dissertation presents a model of how journalism practitioner-academics can present their in-depth journalistic practice in ways that make clear its standing as legitimate academic research.

Informed by Candy’s (2006) framework for practice-led and practice-based research, the thesis defines two research methodologies: research on practice and research through practice. Using the radio documentary as the focus, research on practice is represented by fieldwork studies involving international radio documentary producers to provide new insights into the creative process. To demonstrate research though practice the researcher applies the theory generated in the first part of the study to reflect on her own practice as she produces a one-hour radio documentary, Deadly Dust commissioned by Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Radio National. Each part of this study would independently contribute new insights and knowledge into the under-researched area of radio studies in general and radio documentary practice specifically. However, taken together, the two parts present a compelling argument for why the practice of radio documentary production can be seen as a legitimate research process with legitimate research outcomes.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Media, Communication and Culture
Supervisor(s): Phillips, Gail
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