Although community journalism is a global phenomenon, it would be folly to assume that the practices and roles of community-focused news media can be generalized across diverse cultures. That may be especially true with regard to the developing democracies, where socio-political divisions remain very much a part of living memory. This monograph brings together essays by media scholars from five different developing nations to illustrate the diversity of community journalism around the world, as well as to provide some baseline information for future study of community journalism in and across those nations.
For the inaugural issue of Community Journalism, the publisher invited two distinguished community journalism scholars – John A. Hatcher and Bill Reader – to reflect on community journalism as a concept and important avenues of research that conceptualization should encourage. This essay is the product of their efforts.