Democracy needs strong, independent, critical journalism. Today, constructive journalism is pushing high-quality journalism forward, just as investigative and data journalism once did before they became industry essentials. Constructive journalism focuses on social cohesion and future-oriented reporting, revealing new economic perspectives while promoting diversity and quality in the media sector. This provides consumers not only with information but also with a wide range of perspectives, and it simultaneously encourages and empowers them as agents of change.
Here are ten characters illustrating how constructive journalists understand their roles as they change and evolve:
The Future Explorer isn't satisfied with simply describing a present-day problem. Instead, they look forward: Where do we go from here? How might things continue? They strive to discover not just the causes behind a current situation but also what possibilities and visions could exist for the future.
The Democracy Guardian stands steadfast alongside every citizen, keeping a close eye on both the powerholders and the enemies of democracy. They are aware that what they report on and how they cover it can influence the tone of public discourse and the perception of reality. They take responsibility for the impact their work has on society.
The Relevance Seeker knows their target audience and provides them with the information they actually need to have a good life. In doing so, they constantly and consciously question their own point of view. Their goal is objective reporting, but they are aware that individual convictions, values and experiences can lead to different perspectives and perceptions of relevance.
Constructive journalism teams are Diversity Champions. They are made up of individuals from every background and walk of life and reflect as many facets of society as possible. This enriches reporting and ensures that a comprehensive range of public perspectives is represented.
The Perspective Pilot assumes different points of view. While in the air, they maintain an overview and consider the big picture. If they fly out of their own country, then they broaden their perspective. When they land, they get right up close and report locally.
The Solutions Finder finds out what's up. While searching for solutions, they make sure to keep an open mind and research every avenue: Which approach has already worked where – and why? Any new ideas out there? And will they really be helpful?
The Fact Fan is crazy about data and facts. When researching problems and solutions, they place importance on prominently incorporating scientific and scholarly findings that are socially relevant, presenting them in a detailed yet comprehensible way. When it comes to innovative reporting forms, data has enormous potential that should be utilised.
The Information Navigator provides orientation amidst the tidal wave of information by explaining things and making sure they're clear. They work in a transparent and easy to understand manner. Why is one topic reported on but not another? How do journalists conduct their research? Providing answers to these questions strengthens public trust in the media.
The Listener is not satisfied with simple answers. They question the interests and needs hidden in slogans and opinions. They bring empathetic interest in a topic to the discussion table, where they pay attention to commonalities. They see themselves as someone who builds bridges in the public discourse.
The Quality Custodian is committed to the principles and processes that have long defined quality journalism and continue to define it today across print, TV, radio and online. They seek to further develop the craft of journalism so that the industry can continue to serve all parts of society during the digital era.