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Competition and Public Service Broadcasting: Stimulating Creativity or servicing Capital?

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  • Turner, S.
  • Lourenço, A.

Abstract

In UK public service broadcasting, recent regulatory change has increased the role of the private sector in television production, culminating in the BBC's recent introduction of 'creative competition' between in-house and independent television producers. Using the concept of 'cognitive distance', this paper focuses on the increasing role of the independent sector as a source of creativity and innovation in the delivery of programming for the BBC. The paper shows that the intended benefits of introducing new competencies into public service broadcasting have been thwarted by, on the one hand, a high level of cognitive proximity between in-house and external producers and, on the other, a conflict in values between the BBC and the independent sector, with the latter responding to a commercial imperative that encourages creativity in profitable genres, leaving gaps in other areas of provision. While recent regulatory reform appears to have had a limited impact on the diversity of programming, it does suggest a closer alignment of programme content with the imperatives of capital. Implications for the literature on communities of practice are noted.

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File URL: http://www.cbr.cam.ac.uk/pdf/WP408.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by ESRC Centre for Business Research in its series ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers with number wp408.

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Date of creation: Jun 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cbr:cbrwps:wp408

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Web page: http://www.cbr.cam.ac.uk/

Related research

Keywords: Cognitive distance; Governance; Public sector reforms; Networks .;

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  1. Bart Nooteboom, 2000. "Learning by Interaction: Absorptive Capacity, Cognitive Distance and Governance," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 69-92, March.
  2. Simon Deakin & Ana Lourenço & Stephen Pratten, 2008. "No 'Third Way' for Economic Organizations? Networks and Quasi-Markets in Broadcasting," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp360, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
  3. Nooteboom, Bart, 1999. "Innovation, Learning and Industrial Organisation," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(2), pages 127-50, March.
  4. North, Douglass C., 1993. "Economic Performance through Time," Nobel Prize in Economics documents 1993-2, Nobel Prize Committee.
  5. Joanne Roberts, 2006. "Limits to Communities of Practice," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(3), pages 623-639, 05.
  6. Amin, Ash & Roberts, Joanne, 2008. "Knowing in action: Beyond communities of practice," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 353-369, March.
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