Outlining a model of social journalism for health

Melissa Sweet, Lynore Geia, Pat Dudgeon, Kerry McCallum, Summer May Finlay, Megan Williams, Marie McInerney, Ruth Armstrong, Jennifer Doggett, Amy Coopes, Mitchell J.ward, Tim Senior, Matthew Ricketson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Social journalism is an emerging field of practice that seeks to reframe journalism as an action-oriented service built on relationships and collaborations, rather than as primarily content or a product. It offers opportunities for innovation that re-centre the public interest roles of journalism at a time when public interest journalism is in crisis. This article outlines a 10-point model for social journalism, drawing on case studies in health journalism connected to the online platform Croakey. org. These case studies show how using decolonising and participatory action frameworks can transform journalism research and practice, with potential benefits for the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. They also illustrate a dynamic process of knowledge exchange between journalism research and practice. Elements of the proposed model for social journalism practice include: standpoint; transdisciplinary practice; connectivity; relationships; responsive listening; reflexivity; immersion; transparency and trust; creativity and innovation; and an ethic of service and outcomes. It is a model in which transformative health journalism facilitates and enables transformation in spheres beyond journalism. This article also considers the constraints and challenges facing social journalism initiatives and practitioners, and makes recommendations for policy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-106
Number of pages16
JournalAustralian Journalism Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017


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