Migrant numbers vs perceptions in shaping coverage

REMINDER analysis highlighted that there isn’t a clear relationship between the numbers of migrants in, or migration to/from, a given country and the response of journalists to the issue.

For example, in the UK, journalists were focussed on EU migration even as data repeatedly showed that the greatest share of migration to the UK was still from non-EU countries, while Romanian journalists often discussed migration in the context of the ‘asylum crisis’ in the EU, despite Romania itself receiving very few asylum seekers.

Researchers found that while migrant numbers may decide what is covered, journalism norms, government/media relationships and perceptions of the management of a situation will shape how it is covered.

What are these norms?

How do people judge how migration is managed?

Do the numbers have any effect on the amount of coverage?

How do rapid changes shape coverage?