Background

Ester Pollack, PhD, is a Professor of Journalism Studies in the Department of Media Studies at Stockholm University and deputy head of the department. Her research combines sociological and historical perspectives on the relations between two of society’s institutions: journalism and politics. Pollack received her doctorate in 2001 with a thesis on the development of Swedish crime journalism and criminal policy during the 1900s; and has followed up with more recent studies on crime news and the police's role as a news source. Currently she collaborates with criminologists in the project Organized Crime on the Agenda. She has also conducted research on the Swedish media during the second world war, on the so called Moscow trials in the Swedish press during the 1930s, on mediated political scandals in the Nordic countries from 1980s and onward and on the description of the Roma in Swedish press during the last twenty years.

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Research Interests

Pollack’s research covers three different fields: media and crime, journalism's role in the history of politics and political communication. Media and crime concerns the relationships between crime journalism and criminal policy, the interplay between several of society’s institutions, with symbolic and concrete significance when it comes to the legal system. Journalism’s role in the history of politics covers studies on Swedish news reporting about the Soviet Union in the 1930s and about the Holocaust during the Second World War period. In both cases she relates her research to the historical knowledge, reorientation and scientific debate about the course of events in the 1930s and '40s made during the past decade. Finally, her third area of research focuses on political communication: a) journalism and political scandals in the Nordic region, with publications Skandalenes Markedsplass. Politikk, Moral og Mediedrev [2009], SCANDALOUS! The Mediated Construction of Political Scandals in Four Nordic Countries [2012] and "Nordic Political Scandals: frequency, types and Consequences". In Ludwig, M., Schierl, T., & von Sikorski, C. (Eds.) Mediated Scandals - Gründe, Genese und von Folgeeffekte Mediale Skandalberichterstattung. 2016 and Pollack, E "Personalized Scandalization: sensationalizing trivial conflicts?". In Fugl Eskjær, M., Hjarvard, S. & Mortensen (Eds.),* The Dynamics of Mediatized Conflicts* [2015] b) advocacy think tanks in the Nordic region with the publication ”Advocay Think Tanks as News Sources and Agenda Setters” in Politik (with Prof. Sigurd Allern) [2016] c) public relations, journalism, politics and democracy. Among other things, she has studied lobbying as a political impetus and the importance of emerging journalistic cooperation for revealing corruption within international companies. In the field of political communication we have collaborated in a Nordic network of researchers.

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Ongoing Research

In July 2020, the article ** The Role of Think Tanks in the Swedish Political Landscape* was published, * written together with Sigurd Allern and part of a Nordic thematic issue on think tanks in * Scandinavian Political science. My work on studies of Swedish newspapers' reports on the Holocaust and Dagens Nyheter's reporting on the German concentration camps led to the publication of the article As the Holocaust escalated, the Swedish press fell silent in the spring of 2020. The work on the study on the Holocaust and Swedish media's reporting is continuing. During the spring of 2020, I also completed a study on name publication of perpetrators within crime journalism (for the Institute of Media Studies). The anthology will be published in the summer of 2020. I have also updated a chapter on the different roles of crime journalism for a new anthology on forensic psychology to be published in the autumn of 2020. Together with Sigurd Allern, I have completed a new study on Swedish think tanks that is part of a Nordic project and is awaiting publication in a special issue of Scandinavian Political Studies. Yet another chapter on perspectives in political journalism in Sweden as part of a comparative article together with other Nordic researchers is finished and will be published in a Nordic anthology. An article about corruption scandals in the Nordic countries and the relationship to various measurements of corruption, is written (together with Sigurd Allern) for a new Italian scientific journal Etica Publica. Together with Sigurd Allern, we have prepared an earlier report on the revolving doors between lobbyism and politics published within the so-called Class Project, Katalys, which will be a chapter in a book to be published in the autumn of 2020. In the summer of 2019, I finished working with Sigurd Allern on the book "Source Verification! Journalism in the Age of Lies "(which won Student Literature's honorary award for Course Literature 2019).

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Articles with Ester Pollack