Romanian Media Coverage on Bioethics. the Issue of Stem Cells

By Iancu, Ioana; Balaban, Delia Cristina | Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies, Spring 2009 | Go to article overview

Romanian Media Coverage on Bioethics. the Issue of Stem Cells


Iancu, Ioana, Balaban, Delia Cristina, Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies


In the last decades, scientific developments are largely discussed and debated mainly at the media level. Based on the agenda setting model, the importance of a certain theme is given by the frequency of its appearances in mass-media. Within this context, this paper focuses on the issue of stem cells and its media coverage in Romania. Using content analysis of the most read national newspapers, the research aims to emphasize two relevant aspects: the stem cells issue is only partly visible in the written media and the debate between ethics and science is rather non-existent.

Key Words:

agenda setting, written media, stem cells, ethics, bioethics, Romanian newspapers

Introduction

In the last decades, scientific developments are largely discussed and debated. Mass-media is considered to be responsible for the quantity and quality of the information and for the approached subjects. Thus, based on the agenda setting model, the importance of a certain theme at the public level is given by the frequency of its appearances in mass-media.

Within this context, this paper deals with the issue of stem cells and its media coverage in Romania. Considering the opportunities that stem cells treatments implies, this research aims to measure how well media covers this subject and what are its main features. The issue of stem cells is considered to be extremely important mainly in the context in which 80% of the citizens consider that the problems of Romania are connected to health and medical problems.1

The support of the analysis is represented by the main national newspapers.2 The main research question of the paper is how the most important national newspapers deal with the issue of stem cells. Specifically, we are interested in two aspects. First, this paper aims to analyze the level of visibility that the issue of stem cells has in the written media. Second, within a more in depth study, this research puts forward the debate between ethics and science. Based on these two interests, we claim that the issue of stem cells is not only insufficiently discussed, but the traditional opposition between religion and science is not sufficiently debated either.

The issue of this research can be considered new and interesting mainly because an era of scientific discoveries has started and because people are becoming aware of its importance in daily life. Moreover, this paper aims to raise journalists' interest on writing more about the issue of stem cells and on the possibility of healing previously incurable diseases.

Theoretical Background

The Agenda-Setting theory comes to stress the importance of media in contemporary society and the influence it has both on the audience and on the politicians. Taking this into consideration, this model stresses the way media selects and structures its messages and questions the awareness of media responsibility. Moreover, it focuses both on the issues media insistently presents and on those that are overlooked. These are just a few questions that, even if not directly connected to the agenda model, are provoked by it. Agenda Setting is the process through which the public opinion and receivers in general are influenced their mental perception of reality by placing certain themes in the media, and by their place in the media presentation. Agenda Building is the process through which certain themes of diverse natures (political, economical, cultural, social etc.) are included on the media agenda and are specifically presented. Inter-media-Agenda-Setting is the process through which certain types of media are influenced by the thematic offer of other types in building the agenda.

The agenda model uses a complex methodology that allows relating objective reality and media reality. McCombs and Shaw, the authors of the initial model call the main themes and the secondary themes treated by the media major items and minor items respectively. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Romanian Media Coverage on Bioethics. the Issue of Stem Cells
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.