BCM332 Case Study Pt. 1-Gender Representation in the News Media

Organisation: The GMMP (Global Media Monitoring Project)

The issue of gender representation in News Media is well known and has been researched for many years, yet it still remains an issue to this day. So, for my case study, I have decided to research the Global Media Monitoring Project, which has focused on changing the way women are represented on the news.


Since its inception in 1995, The GMMP have released reports every five years regarding the role of women amongst men and gender bias in the newsroom. (Who Makes the News, N/A). Participants range from different areas, age and status, weather it is university students, media practitioners or even women activists’. The project is the largest of its kind and is in fact working with Who Makes the News and the World Association for Christian Communication to end news media sexism by 2020.

The 2015 report, which marked the project’s 20th anniversary, featured an unprecedented 114 participating countries. In the foreword of the report, Margaret Gallagher states that “the media as both powerful institutions and power-defining mechanisms – are fundamental to the ways in which women’s status and gender inequalities are reflected, understood and potentially changed” (Gallagher 2015, pg.1). The media undoubtedly has a great amount of influence on the way we think and behave and so it is, much like Gallagher states, essential that we improve the way women are represented in the media, particularly when it comes to the news. However, the research presented in the GMMP report is worrying, with women only making up 24 % of the people heard about, read or seen in newspaper, television and radio news, exactly as they did in 2010. (GMMP 2015, pg.8). What is incredibly alarming with this result, is that there has been no progress in the 5 years since the last report.


In Chapter 6 of the report, the GMMP introduces five objectives which they hope will lead to their penultimate goal of ending news media sexism in 2020. The targets are as follows (GMMP 2015, pg.99):


  1. Newsrooms that support gender equality: 100% of national public media and 40% of private media in each country.


  1. Overall global presence of women in the news: 50%.


  1. 30% global average of news that clearly challenges gender stereotypes


  1. 30% global average of news that highlights issues of gender equality and inequality


  1. 30 % Global average of news reporting that is anchored in a critical (women’s and marginalized groups’) human rights perspective

Now, considering what I previously mentioned regarding one of the findings from the researched, it is fair to say that these targets are very ambitious.  Yet, these goals seem to indicate that the GMMP remain optimistic about change in the future and with an increasing amount of digital news platforms available, this may force traditional news platforms such as television to adapt and maybe then we might finally see some progress in representation of gender. But for now, we can only hope and imagine.


Gallagher, M 2015, ‘Foreword’, Global Media Monitoring Project 2015, World Association for Christian Communication (WACC), pps. 1-3

Global Media Monitoring Project (GMMP) 2015, Global Media Monitoring Project 2015, World Association for Christian Communication (WACC), pps.8-99

Who Makes the News N/A, GMMP, Who Makes the News, viewed 9th August 2016, http://whomakesthenews.org/gmmp




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