Birhanu Olana Dirbaba


Negotiating Identities: The Professional Self-perception of Ethiopian Journalists

Author Birhanu Olana Dirbaba


The study raises questions about continuity and change in the professional identity of Ethiopian journalists in the twenty-year period since the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front took power in the early 1990s, promising a free and pluralistic Ethiopian press. Amidst growing interest in post-colonial African journalism cultures, the study uses data from the first multilingual, national survey of Ethiopia’s small cohort of journalists to examine how professional identities are negotiated when journalism practices routinely fail to live up to journalists’ own normative expectations. In so doing, it identifies ways in which Ethiopian journalists could improve their professional practices.