Global Media Policy

Our understanding of Global Media Policy encompasses the multiplicity of configurations of interdependent but operationally autonomous actors, that are involved, with different degrees of autonomy and power, in processes of formal or informal character, at different and sometimes overlapping levels - from the local to the supra-national and global - in policy-oriented processes in the domain of media and communication, including infrastructural, content, usage, normative and governing aspects. Through their interactions, actors may (re)define their interests and pursue different goals; contribute in framing policy-relevant issues and produce relevant knowledge and cultural practices; promote the recognition of principles and the evolution of norms that inform state-based policy-making, as well as non-state based standard setting and selfgoverning arrangements. Ultimately, they engage in political negotiation while trying to influence or determine the outcome of decision-making.

Therefore, within the framework of this project, the global is understood not only as the 'international' level of policy-making but as a system of worldwide interconnectedness, linking the local, national, regional and international. It describes the interplay between different territorial scales, and reflects the multi-layered, multi-spatial and multi-dimensional processes involved in governing media and communication.

The understanding of media goes beyond traditional perspectives on content provision via platforms such as print and broadcasting to encompass the converged realities of media and communication systems, including all forms of new ICTs; technical infrastructure; various forms of usage and participation by citizens, as well as implications such as privacy and security; principles of access and communication rights; and related areas such as culture and development.

Policy refers to all processes, formal and informal, where actors with different degrees of power and autonomy intervene. It includes formal law making and regulation, leading to binding outputs, as well as the less formal, latent and often invisible processes through which norms and standards are set and decision-making is informed. It therefore also embraces a plurality of actors and settings, from traditional multilateral arrangements amongst state actors to a more complex landscape where states and intergovernmental institutions share the stage with private corporations, standard setting entities, civil society organizations, epistemic and technical communities.

Read more: Article by Marc Raboy and Claudia Padovani on conceptualizing global media policy, July 2010