|M.Sc Student||Ravit Richter|
|Subject||Mass Media Coverage of Environmental Planning Conflicts|
Decoding Framing and Reframing Processes
|Department||Department of Architecture and Town Planning||Supervisor||Ms. Vraneski Ariela|
Planning projects have increasingly become part of the public agenda, evermore turning into “media issues”. While covering these conflicts journalists apply frames in order to grant meaning and create a newsworthy story. Our study relates environmental planning conflicts to framing processes and to their media’s coverage.
We employed a case-study analysis of the Trans-Israel Highway project, performed mainly through content analysis of 342 newspaper articles covering the conflict in the nineties. We conducted a narrative analysis of all articles and a multidimensional content analysis, using a framing typology we developed, zooming in on the years 1994 and 1998. The typology serves as a tool for decoding frames and integrates frames in the media and media frames.
The findings demonstrate the dynamics of framing processes and the variations of their frequency and content. We revealed shifts in the dominance of frames and of actors, as well as differences of content and nuance of similar frames when attributed to various actors. Triangulating relevant literature and the research’s findings, we proposed an initial model for describing the complex linkages among types of frames, the public and media agenda and the context in which the frames are created and recreated.
Our findings reveal that the media’s presentation of the dispute bears both positive and negative potentials: the language used, mainly military jargon and negative expressions, tends to enforce an adversarial atmosphere; whereas the growing interest of the media in the wide framework bears the potential for better informed decision-making processes in the long run.