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Media Policies Revisited: The Challenge for Media Freedom and Independence

Edited by Evangelia Psychogiopoulou, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 294 pages, 2014, ISBN: 978-1-137-33783-2

Nada Svob-Djokic and Pasko Bilic from the Department for Culture and Communication, Institute for Development and International Relations in Zagreb, Croatia have published a chapter in the book Media Policies Revisited: The Challenge for Media Freedom and Independence, edited by Evangelia Psychogiopoulou and published by Palgrave Macmillan. The book is the result of a three-year European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) project titled Media Policies Revisited: Valuing and Reclaiming Free and Independent Media in Contemporary Democratic Systems (MEDIADEM). The project activities entailed a comparative study of media systems and media policies in fourteen European countries. As a result of project activities the book takes a closer look at policy processes and regulatory patterns, court decisions regarding freedom and independence, media finance and business models, and journalistic profession in contemporary European media systems.

In their contribution titled The National Versus the European: Croatian Roadmap to Media Freedom and Independence Svob-Djokic and Bilic analyse the interplay between the national and European public media policy and regulation levels in Croatia. The question of media freedom and independence is contextualized in the transitional context. This context was marked by chaotic and largely inefficient economic reform along with radical changes in social values caused by the strong globalising influences and the overall reorganisation of media communication processes. Considering the small local media production, new communication flows have brought forth an increase in dependence on transnational media companies and imported products which formally support media freedom and independence, but simultaneously monopolise media production and content.