EMEDIATE will make innovative theoretical and empirical contributions to the study of European public spheres (EPS). We propose a new, networked and fluid conceptualisation of public spheres. Thus we will cast light upon the intellectual and popular European integration processes, since the 'Enlightenment' and accelerated significantly in the second half of the twentieth century. The development of 'Western' as well as 'Eastern' among other EPS from the Rome Treaty to the 'War on Terror' will be analysed through the media. We identify five 'crisis periods' in which media discourses on Europe will be examined and interrelated with emerging public spheres.
We devote particular attention to questions of ethics and visuality as well as their mobilisation in connection to the overall discourse on 'European values' as well as their political use. Our focus will be on relevant media in each period, accounting for technological development from printed media (newspapers) to radio, film, television and Internet, as well as the power implications of this technological dynamic.
Our original research confronts: a) the evolution of European narratives transcending language barriers in visual media and b) the actual and potential use of the Internet as a means to constitute the EPS and to increase citizen participation in them.
EMEDIATE will refine the concept of the public spheres in European contexts from theoretical and empirical perspectives, it will question the role of the media in creating and transforming EPS. From a policy perspective, it will develop ethical guidelines for media professionals, suggest models of 'democratic dialogue websites' and produce innovative pedagogic materials.
EMEDIATE was sponsored by EU's 6th Framework Programme.