A precondition for good policy is that it should enhance community value by more than it costs. It can be difficult to measure that benefit when so much of it seems intangible, such as journalism’s contribution to strengthening democracy and social life.

One answer is to ask the public what value they place on it. This can be done sensibly, systematically and transparently through ‘willingness to pay’ analysis (also termed ‘contingent valuation’).

With these surveys we seek to understand whether and how the community values public interest journalism. The surveys are conducted by Essential Media for PIJI at six-monthly intervals and analysed by Professor Glenn Withers AO of Australian National University and Applied Economics.

The next survey will be conducted in April 2021.

October 2020 survey coming soon.

Researcher

Professor Glenn Withers AO, Professor of Economics at the Research School of Economics, Australian National University and UNSW Canberra; co-managing director of the consulting firm Applied Economics.

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