An evaluation of the impact of the government of South Africa's intervention carried out between 2001 and 2004 to accelerate racial transformation in the advertising and media industry.
Ndebele, Sibusiso Derrick.
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The purpose of this study was to examine the claimed racism and lack of transformation in the advertising, marketing and communications industry based on the plenary hearings that were held in parliament in November 2001 to October 2004. The main aims of this dissertation included the exploration of national media communications industry paths in respect of the transformation agenda and the provision of systematic analysis for a smooth transition to real transformation. This study could therefore be classified as being located within the interpretive school of social science (Silverman, 1993), and a mixture of methodologies was appropriate. Using a multiple case study approach, this dissertation particularly focuses on the alleged resistance of this industry to transformation, which sparked the journalists, media owners, the government and non- government organisations to set their focus on how the communications industry conducted their business. The Department of Communications and the Government Communication and Information System (both determined to be catalysts and not meddlers) took the initiative to establish a task force to put together an Indaba of all interested parties and anyone who had even the most remote interest in the issue regarding the claims that the industry was still immersed in the old apartheid mentality. The South African media and communications industry is a world-class industry. In the context of a global industry of over $300 billion in which the USA accounts for 42%, Japan for 11%, UK for 4.5% and SA for 0.3%, SA has distinguished itself when it comes to measuring its creative product against its global peers. In the four major international advertising festivals, SA is invariably in the top 10 best performing countries in the world (Ikalafeng & Warsop, 2002). It was therefore imperative to investigate such claims because it appeared as if the industry was diverting from the national agenda of transformation. Data was collected from three sources (policy documents, expert interviews and industry case studies) using two main tools. These were the face-to-face interviews and web-data mining. The data collected assisted in drawing the conclusions and to form both inductive and deductive reasoning about the research subject. As this study locates the issue of transformation within the corporate social investment (CSI) framework the researcher also had to put the two (transformation and corporate citizenship) in context. By gathering available primary and secondary data this dissertation therefore tries to find answers empirically to explore the issue of perceived or actual lack of transformation in media and how these impact on the individual and organisations. The findings are consistent with other research showing that even though significant strides have been made there is still a long way to go before we can truly claim that the industry is truly representative of the South African demographics.