Icons of Zimbabwe's Crisis and their Interpretation by European Union Officials

Researcher:

Charles Moyo

Research Area:

B


The power of the media in driving or influencing foreign policy or decisions of institutions is often overlooked, yet the media could play a significant role in influencing decision making of institutions ranging from private companies, governments, NGOs, and regional organisations, among others. This research aims at assessing the extent to which the media has influenced the EU foreign policy in Africa. The study makes a comparison between Zimbabwe and Kenya. Considering the history of electoral violence and human rights violations in Zimbabwe and Kenya, this research is particularly interested in the role that pictures (images) and videos play in influencing the EU foreign policy positions on Kenya and Zimbabwe. The media channels under investigation for the research are CNN, France 24, BBC and Aljazeera English. They have been chosen because of their international outlook and they also have specific desks on African news. The research utilises Iconology, Agenda Setting Theory and the Complex Interdependence Theory as analytical instruments. Additionally, the study utilises qualitative research and uses key informant interviews on EU officials, media experts, and media houses, among others, as sources of data collection.