Vivekananda School of Journalism & Mass Communication

Lecture 01 - Research Methods in Journalism and Resources for Journalists

The Internal Research Committee, VSJMC organized the first lecture on Special Lecture Series on 4th September, 2019 in Vivekananda Hall, 6th Floor, Block-B on the title “Research Methods in Journalism and Resources for Journalists”. The guest speaker for session was eminent journalist Ms Sevanti Ninan. She addressed the fifth semester students with her valuable insights.

Firstly, a small video showing how Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies (VIPS) has always encouraged initiatives like these was played followed by the felicitation of Ms Ninan with a sapling and the book ‘Wide Angle – Wildlife in Pictures’ authored by Chairman of Vips, Dr S C Vats. Further, the anchors – Smalika and Venus, two fifth semester students of VSJMC introduced the students to Ms Ninan by listing her experience of writing media columns for various reputed newspapers such as The Hindu, The Indian Express, Hindustan Times and The Mint while at the same time, working as the editor of, a South Asian media watch website founded by her in 2001, until it was archived in 2018. She has also written books such as Through The Magic Window: Television and Change In India and Headlines from the Heartland: Reinventing the Hindi Public Sphere.


Ms Ninan started her lecture by informing the students about the huge database available as resources for journalists for media research. Latest statistics on subjects such as internet connectivity, newspapers, and money spent by the government on advertising can be obtained through reports of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI), Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP) respectively. In addition to these, TV viewing data and print media readership data is available on the websites of Broadcast Audience Research Council India (BARC) and Readership Studies Council of India (RSCI). Event Twitter can be used for research purposes. For subjects other than media, journalists can visit the websites of Election Commission of India, Lokniti and PRSIndia for information on specific polls, election studies and legislative procedures.

She talked about categories of media research and analysis. She explained the objectives of various researches. While talking about free speech research, Mrs. Ninan threw light upon threats that journalists usually receive and the impact of self- censorship by media houses.

For tools of research other than analyzing available data and content, Ms Ninan talked about field research, personal interviews and focus group discussions. Also, for research projects, she suggested that partners such as NGOs, researchers and journalists are required. The lecture was followed by an interesting Q&A session during which Ms Ninan responded to various queries of students on issues such a polarization of media and fake news. Total 180 students attended the lecture.

The session concluded with a vote of thanks by Dean VSJMC, Prof. Dr. Charulata Singh.

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