A framework for examining hybridity: The case of academic explanatory journalism

Abstract: Across a number of disciplines, hybridity is regularly invoked when two previously distinct elements – whether objects, concepts, frameworks, practices, models, mediums or institutions – are brought together. However, this is often done with a vague theoretical nod. Labeled a hybrid and left at the level of broad theory, scholarship has tended to ignore a critical issue: what happens when the disparate elements of a hybrid are introduced in practice? This conceptual paper takes the case of academic explanatory journalism, a nascent intentional collaborative practice between academic authors and journalist editors, in order to illustrate how the theoretical concept of hybridity plays out in practice. This particular case presents a number of opportunities and benefits within a Western democratic context. However, our examination highlights that without a more nuanced discussion of how hybridization plays out in real life, its potential benefits are compromised. We propose a five-step framework that can be applied to other examples of hybridity, across varied disciplines beyond media and communication studies. This five-step framework helps uncover the complications that might arise when disparate elements are hybridized, moving from theory into practice. The approach helps create the space and understanding needed to design solutions pre-emptively.

Citation: Bartleman, M., Dubois, E., & Macdonald, I. (2024). A framework for examining hybridity: The case of academic explanatory journalism. Convergence, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1177/13548565241255044

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top