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About us

Media & democracy is a national innovation and research program in trends in media and democracy. The program’s vision is to strengthen journalism, public discourse and democracy. This is effected by being an attractive, experimental development environment where media players, academia and public institutions work together to drive innovation and research that produces and spreads new knowledge, new working methods, new services, and new tools. Collaboration takes place in unique laboratory testing environments, where Lindholmen Science Park serves as a neutral base.

The starting point for Media & Democracy is the ongoing and historical transformation of the media landscape. Digitization has revolutionized opportunities to produce, publish and consume media content and traditional journalism-driven media no longer hold the same dominant and narrative role.

What effects – both positive and negative – does this paradigm shift have on journalism, media, citizens and, most importantly,  on democracy?
Sweden began to promote media’s role in democracy 250 years ago by introducing the world’s first Freedom of the Press Act.

The Media & Democracy program was first established in the summer of 2017 but preparations had been under way for several years.

Some of the milestones in the process are:

* 2014: The initiative was conceived. Relevant Swedish media research was identified.
* 2015: Lindholmen Science Park arranged open workshops for the media industry and academia.
* 2016-2017: Pilot study period funded by Region Västra Götaland.

The program is led by Lindholmen Science Park and Region Västra Götaland has provided the base funding.

The initiative is also supported by commercial media in Sweden via Tidningsutgivarna (TU), public service companies (Sveriges Television and Sveriges Radio) and key media players in the Swedish academic community (Gothenburg University, Jönköping Business School, Karlstad University, Linnaeus University, Mid Sweden University and Södertörn University). International players supporting the initiative include Nordicom, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA), the Norwegian media industry network NxtMedia and the Norwegian Media Businesses’ Association (Mediebedriftenes Landsforening, MBL) 

The steering committee consists of the following members:

Jonathan Falck, Chairman and Senior Advisor, Medier & demokrati
Jeanette Gustafsdotter, CEO, Tidningsutgivarna
Anette Novak, Director and Manager, Swedish Media Council
Robert Olsson, Strategist/Senior Editor, SVT
Ulrika Andersson, Associate Professor of Journalism and Media, and Research Manager at the SOM-institute
Bengt Johansson, Professor University of Gothenburg
Martin Svensson, Co-director, AI Innovation of Sweden
Martin Holmberg, Programme Manager, Medier & demokrati

For more information, please contact:

Martin Holmberg, Programme Manager, Media & democracy
Lindholmen Science Park
+46 (0)31-764 70 61
+46 (0)705-62 40 93