What is the Media Policy and Democracy Project?
The Media Policy and Democracy Project is a joint collaborative
research project between the Department of Communication
Science at the University of South Africa (UNISA), and
Department of Journalism, Film and Television at the University
of Johannesburg which was launched in 2012, and aims to
promote participatory media and communications policymaking
in the public interest in South Africa.
The MPDP is comprised of three specific focus areas, namely:
- 1. Internet freedom, privacy online, and communications surveillance
2. Media diversity and transformation
3. Communications policy and the public interest
At the heart of this research project are three elements. First, a main aim of the project is to provide unique opportunities for young and junior researchers and academics, particularly women, to benefit from involvement in the project with regard to the advancement of their professional academic careers and thereby encourage the growth of the media and communications academic community of South Africa more broadly. Second, another main aim of the project involves community engagement whereby the findings produced will be presented in forums of public engagement, including the South African parliament, so as to positively inform various processes of communications and media policy making in our country and therefore serve to benefit the South African citizenry. Third, the research relationship between the universities involved is one that has developed in a spirit of academic collegiality and out of a shared desire to, as researchers, work together to respond to the various and complex challenges faced by our field and our country.
The Media Policy and Democracy Project is funded by the Open Society Foundation for South Africa (OSF-SA) and the College of Human Sciences at the University of South Africa (UNISA).