Public Service Media in Europe: Between the Fourth Estate and the Fifth Power

ORF Public Value Texts

ORF is required by law to provide comprehensive quality control. In addition to the Public Value Report and the Annual Report, this consists primarily of elements created with the help of scientific expertise: The “Audience Panels”, during which the audience‘s opinion on various program pillars is explored, are evaluated by a social science institute. The representative survey on program appreciation, among other things, is conducted by social scientists, as is the testing of the quality profiles – the self-commitments of ORF editors to various program genres. And ORF‘s annual public value study, which has been published for years in cooperation with other European public broadcasters, is entrusted to outstanding experts, especially from the field of communications science. Not only the ORF-programmes with their public mission and remit to inform and educate on TV, radio, and online, but also ORF quality control is thus closely linked to scientific knowledge.

Consequently we reacted positively to the request of RIPE founder Greg Lowe and the University of Vienna to hold a separate ORF Day in Vienna for RIPE, the most important scientific conference on public service media. This first day of the conference focuses on the exchange between journalism and science on the conference topic “Between the Fourth Estate and the Fifth Power”. In addition, this issue of PUBLIC VALUE TEXTE publishes the extended abstracts of the scholars invited to the conference. We
would like to thank Michael-Bernhard Zita and Regina Außerwöger from the University of Vienna for organizing the conference and all the authors for writing the abstracts.

[Text sourced from ORF]

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