Journalistic performance in Latin America: A comparative study of professional roles in news content

Claudia Mellado, Mireya Márquez-Ramírez, Jacques Mick, Martín Oller Alonso, Dasniel Olivera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Comparative research across the world has shown that nation-level variables are strong predictors of professional roles in journalism. There is, however, still insufficient comparative research about three key issues: cross-national comparison of journalistic role performance, exploration of how - or whether - organizational variables account for variation in role performance across countries, and the performance of specific journalistic roles that prevail in regions with post-authoritarian political trajectories. This article tackles these three issues by comparatively measuring journalistic performance in five Latin American countries. Based on a content analysis of 9841 news items from 18 newspapers, this article reports findings from Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Ecuador and Mexico, by analyzing the presence of the 'interventionist', 'watchdog', 'loyal', 'service', 'infotainment', and 'civic' roles. Results show that the region is far from homogeneous and that while 'country' is a strong predictor for most of the roles, other variables such as 'media type', 'political orientation', and 'news topic' are also significant predictors to varying levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1087-1106
Number of pages20
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2017


  • Content analysis
  • Latin America
  • journalism
  • professional roles
  • role performance


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