How to Measure News Performance

  • Edda Humprecht
Part of the Challenges to Democracy in the 21st Century book series (CDC)


The major aim of this book was to explain the occurrence of news performance, understood as the degree to which single news outlets fulfilled democratic functions. Consequently, the analysis of news performance was conducted at the outlet level. The functions of interest included information, accountability, legitimation, and integration. These functions were translated into measurable indicators and examined via quantitative content analysis. To identify constellations of conditions that fostered high-level news performance, a qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) was performed. The methodological approach of this study is outlined in this chapter as follows. First, the content analysis procedure is examined, including the selection criteria, units of coding, sampling period, and coding strategies (Section 4.1). In Section 4.2, the operationalization of the four dimensions of news performance is presented, followed by the operationalization of explanatory conditions at the macro- and meso levels (Section 4.3). Section 4.4 explains the QCA method and its application in the current study, including fuzzy set calibration and the two-step approach. Finally, Section 4.5 summarizes this study’s methodology.


Gross Domestic Product Truth Table News Story News Item Qualitative Comparative Analysis 
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Copyright information

© Edda Humprecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edda Humprecht
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Mass Communication and Media ResearchUniversity of ZurichSwitzerland

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