Why are journalists killed for the work they do – and why are journalists predominately murdered in institutional democracies, where they should enjoy particular protection? Sabine Carey and Anita Gohdes research this question with new detailed data on killings of journalists globally, identifying type of perpetrator and outlets the journalists were working for. Their results show that, counterintuitively, democratic institutions do not help protect reporters from being murdered. Among institutional democracies, locally elected governments increase the risk that a journalist is murdered by state actors or by unconfirmed perpetrators.
The article “Understanding journalist killings” has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Politics. Access the pre-publication paper here.