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What is constructive journalism

Constructive journalism or solutions journalism is based on a new approach that places more attention on solutions, rather than on the problems described in the stories and facts told in the articles.

The idea of constructive journalism was born due to the necessity, shared in between many significant figures of the information community, of promoting a professional activity which committed itself in reporting news and telling stories in a constructive way. Although, doing this while staying accurate and suited to the standards of traditional journalism, therefore not losing its side of criticism and report. Constructive journalism aims to highlight solutions, giving answers to the reported problems and sensitize the audience while also involving them.

There isn’t an official or distinguished version of constructive journalism. For this reason, it is constantly in evolution, following step by step research developments and acquisition of new knowledge in the academic, journalistic and editing fields. It draws from distinct areas, such as positive psychology, its applications and problem-solving approach. This introduces a new reporting method, which allows journalists and media professionals to take on and deal actively with issues concerning their audience as well as local communities problems or global challenges.

The goal is to search for and find plausible answers to various social problems. Highlighting how people, communities, institutions and everyone who is involved can work towards a possible solution. Giving the audience not only the answer to what can be done, but also how and why.

Constructive journalism aims to dig deep down, showing the audience new points of views and stories to describe the world around us by offering solutions to our problems. If written in the right way, without meddling and subjugation, stories can become a useful tool to give the public significant information on how can society improve and deal with its major problems.

This method of journalism was born in the North of Europe thanks to the encounter of a group of information experts who met in order to back up a constructive use of the media, with the aim of easing and permitting a better confront with social, economic and environmental challenges.

Recent news in Italy offers a substantial example of how many journalists and publishers persist on reporting ill-fated and atrocious news, insisting on an obsessive attention for the turbulent and woeful aspects. They are committed on thinking that real news is only dreadful ones, while the good news – all indiscriminately merged under the category “Kitten saved from a tree”- needs less stylistic skills and are considered less interesting.

Every day we get exposed to an avalanche of news concerning corruption, society and human failures. Even though a certain type of more critic media coverage trigger revolutions and overturn regimes, more researches suggest that “negative focused” news provoke in the readers a feeling of insecurity and apathy. It creates a sense of anxiety and worries, rather than encourage them towards responsible behaviours and contributing to create informed global citizens.

Always more, media professionals as much as readers are realizing how journalism is drastically tending towards an excessive and alarming dramatization of reality, creating this way a new growing demand for new methods of information.

This is constructive journalism: a different and possible method of doing good journalism which is at the same time critical and acute on problems, but operational towards the solutions, by pushing news consumers towards knowledge and changing.

 

It is not a type of journalism which gives coverage and relevance just to good news, but rather a new predisposition towards the way you may write an article, presenting to the audience new shades of a problem and perspective, more focused on the solution.

The Italian Constructive Media Association has many ambitious goals and we are going to unveil them to you a little bit at the time. We are going to give our best. Discover now who we are and what you can do to help us…

Silvio Malvolti
Founder and chariman 

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