Elite interviewing in media and communications policy research | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 11, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1740-8296
  • E-ISSN: 2040-0918



This article critically examines the use of elite interviews in media and communications policy research. It addresses the fit between various analytical frameworks and elite interviews as a primary source of data, interviewee selection, access, the conduct of interviews and data analysis. It is argued that there is a lack of methodological explanation and reflection in our field of study. Partly, this is determined by the preferences of publishers and space constrains but also a widespread reluctance to engage with methodological issues. This contributes to the diminishing relevance of large amounts of scholarship for policy-makers who tend to privilege studies based on narrowly defined and soundly elaborated empirical methods. Clear and concise methodological rigour, systematization and ethnographic reflexivity, thus, play an incredibly important role.


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