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En kvantitativ studie om medias bevakning av området sjukvård & hälsa

Sweden proudly emphasize its work to diminish gender inequality, and rightfully so. Since the 1980’s the income differences between the genders has decreased and more women attain higher education. 2015 the World Economic Forum ranked Sweden top five when it comes to gender equality. But in late 2015 the Swedish organization Rättviseförmedlingen published a report concerning the representation of different groups in Swedish news media. The report presented a substantial picture of the Swedish news media and showed that representation was unequal in many categories. For example, men were over-represented, and almost four times more likely to participate in media than women. According to research on media effects underrepresentation of groups in media can lead to trivialization and marginalization of those groups. The purpose of our study is to analyze media’s representation, of different groups, in the field of medical treatment and health, a field that is a female-intensive field. It’s interesting to see how media cover this field. And if there’s been a change the last 20 years. Our main research questions are: – Who participates in the articles? – Which subjects are present in the articles? – Is there a difference between how different newspapers frame the field of medical treatment and health? – Has the media coverage of the field changed throughout the years? We use three main theories to analyze our results. The theory of news evaluation serve as a starting point to explain why some groups and some subjects are more common in media than others. Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of field and forms of capital adds another dimension, and helps us explain structural differences. The gender theory, illustrates how patriarchal structures effect media representation of women. The method we use is a quantitative content analysis of four major Swedish newspapers, using a digital archive and microfilm to analyze two weeks from three years. The years we chose to analyze were 1995, 2005 and 2015, the longitudinal approach makes it possible to see if the representation has changed over time. In total we analyzed more than 500 news articles. The result shows that there has been a substantial change in media’s representation of gender, in the field of medical treatment and health, in the last 20 years. In 1995 men were almost two times more occurring than women. But in 2015 women occurred in 55 percent of the articles and men only in 45 percent. Another result shows that the group who appear most is experts, such as doctors and professors. That group consist of professions that have high socio-economic status and is in the top of the hierarchy in their field. A big exception is the group patients, civilian and relatives that are the second biggest group that appear in the articles. In that aspect media coverage and representation of different groups show some inequality in the field of medical treatment and health, even though gender inequality has decreased.

Cecilia Ilves och Joakim Wennersten
Journalist, Journalistikgranskning , ht15
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