Viable, Sustainable or Resilient?

Cook, Clare Elizabeth orcid iconORCID: 0000-0001-5063-6013 and Bakker, Piet (2019) Viable, Sustainable or Resilient? Nordicom Review, 40 (s2). pp. 31-49. ISSN 2001-5119

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Abstract Hyperlocal media are increasingly prominent in local media ecologies. However, economic pressures are their biggest challenge and are therefore our main thematic. The study is based on empirical data from 35 hyperlocals in Sweden, the UK, France, the Netherlands and Belgium. We present a conceptual framework of viable, sustainable and resilient models and find that hyperlocals are diversifying their revenues. Drawing on business ecosystems as a theoretical approach, we find these hyperlocals are surviving by forging symbiotic relationships with media, businesses, advertisers and communities in their environment. With its focus on imbalanced and evolving relations, the approach offers a broad framework to explain how hyperlocal business models are developing through a dynamic system of proximal interdependencies. The results contribute to new knowledge by explaining the revenue diversification of hyperlocals in the digital ecosystemic space.

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