Evolution of a field: Swiss media and communication studies
In this paper, we present the evolution of Swiss Media and Communication Studies over the last decade by summarizing the main results from a project funded by the Swiss University Conference (2008–2017). We give an overall picture of the growth in the field (in terms of student numbers, resources and activities), look at diversity in terms of topics (two clusters are identified and presented with respect to various indicators), present changes at the level of individual research units (where we find variance in terms of evolution), give insights into publication patterns (two different publication cultures are found) and describe mobility and career pathways in the field. We observe limited mobility within Switzerland, internal pathways at the level of doctoral students and post-docs, and international mobility, mainly within the same linguistic region, at the professorial level. We conclude that the field has reached a consolidation phase and achieved a rather stable situation, but faces new challenges, with digitalization and the pressure towards homogenization in publication output among the most important.
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