Heft 259

Tatyana Dubina:

An Economic Analysis of the Russian Television System,

Cologne, in June 2009, ISBN 978-3-938933-63-3

132 p., Price 19,00 €


In this slightly modified version of a thesis that was accepted by the Faculty of Mana­ge­ment, Economics and So­cial Sciences of the University of Cologne in winter term 2008/2009 the author analyses the Russian television system from its origin up to 2008. It is evaluated with the help of socio-political, economic, legal and technical criteria. The emphasis is put on the functions of broadcasting for society and on its contribution to social welfare. On this basis the development path of the Russian TV broadcasting system is determined and its current challenges and problems are identified. Possible solutions are presented and evaluated considering the potentials for a successful implementation.

From the author's conclusion: "The Russian broadcasting market, when evaluated with the help of the revenue-based economic model went through a big development path: from state-owned and state-financed, to a mixed state- and privately owned model with mostly market financing and direct and indirect control of the state. The state TV channels are mostly financed with market revenues but are still used as a means of propaganda. The same happens to the private broadcasters which are financed only with market revenues. (…) As the state defines the development of broadcasting to a big extent, most probably no changes will happen as the state is interested in keeping the present status quo. Demand for changes in the broadcasting system coming from the society was not possible in the recent time. However, with the financial and economic crisis of 2008 and the increasing state enforcement in many spheres, the Russians started slowly realizing the necessity of presenting independent opinions. It is still not clear how the situation will develop but the period of crisis can give a chance for changes within the political and economic system as well as mass media."

Table of Contents:

1. Introduction
1.1. Target of the work
1.2. Approach

2. Theoretical framework for broadcasting valuation
2.1. Role of broadcasting
2.2. Broadcasting as a public good?
2.3. Alternatives for the provision of broadcasting programs
2.4. Forms of financing of broadcasting programs
2.5. Causality between revenue structure and output of a broadcaster
2.6. Regulation forms of broadcasting

3. Russian television system in the period between 1950s and 2008
3.1. Soviet television from 1950s through to 1991
3.2. Russian television in its „golden age“ in 1991-1995
3.3. Russian television during media wars 1996-2000
3.4. Television in the era of cleptocracy 2000-2007
3.5. Television after the presidential elections of March 2008: current issues, and trends for future development of Russian broadcasting system

4. Current challenges and possible solutions
4.1. Consolidation of existing results and identification of the current  challenges of the Russian broadcasting system
4.2. Possible solutions and evaluation of the potential of their successful implementation

5. Conclusion