Science communication in Croatia remains immersed in the deficit perspective. The media are, according to scientists, to blame. They are discontent with the quantity of media science coverage, with what the media perceive to be a science story and the way in which they present it, and they think media coverage of science is declining. Media science is, they say, simplified and the information is neither precise nor complete – particularly information about scientific method.

The media landscape in Croatia dramatically changed after the political changes at the beginning of 1990s, followed by economic and social transition. The first privately owned news- paper appeared in Croatia in 1987, but only after political changes we witnessed a boom in the media market. Privatisation of the media included the launch of the new privately owned media, the hybrid of the “private initiative within the state or public ownership” and the transition from state or public into private ownership (Jergović, 2004). The method and the nature of this transition are still not clear or investigated due to the lack of reliable data, but a growing number of media, a failing industry, and the decline of the economic standard led to the struggle for advertisers and readership, and has resulted in commercialisation of newspapers and an overwhelming sensationalistic approach in all fields, including science.

Even when treating a topic of scientific discussion or a conference, media coverage of science in Croatia is often based on anecdotal impressions. In an attempt to analyse current media science coverage, I will use here the results of a study detailing the science coverage in five main Croatian daily newspapers. 

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Public Communication of Science and Technology

 

Lost in transition?
Science in the Croatian newspapers

Blanka Jergović   University of Zagreb and Croatian Radio

Science communication in Croatia remains immersed in the deficit perspective. The media are, according to scientists, to blame. They are discontent with the quantity of media science coverage, with what the media perceive to be a science story and the way in which they present it, and they think media coverage of science is declining. Media science is, they say, simplified and the information is neither precise nor complete – particularly information about scientific method.

The media landscape in Croatia dramatically changed after the political changes at the beginning of 1990s, followed by economic and social transition. The first privately owned news- paper appeared in Croatia in 1987, but only after political changes we witnessed a boom in the media market. Privatisation of the media included the launch of the new privately owned media, the hybrid of the “private initiative within the state or public ownership” and the transition from state or public into private ownership (Jergović, 2004). The method and the nature of this transition are still not clear or investigated due to the lack of reliable data, but a growing number of media, a failing industry, and the decline of the economic standard led to the struggle for advertisers and readership, and has resulted in commercialisation of newspapers and an overwhelming sensationalistic approach in all fields, including science.

Even when treating a topic of scientific discussion or a conference, media coverage of science in Croatia is often based on anecdotal impressions. In an attempt to analyse current media science coverage, I will use here the results of a study detailing the science coverage in five main Croatian daily newspapers. 

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