The cbmc-project combines three analyses:

  1. A market analysis measuring the import and export of media products,
  2. an organizational analysis uncovering the structures of media companies, and
  3. a management analysis focusing on strategies and actions of the media companies.

Within these analyses different research methods are being applied.

The market analysis (1) is based on both document analyses and secondary data analyses. The basis of these analyses are public sources and data collections by state, non-state, supranational, and commercial institutions as well as commercial sources created by consulting firms. These sources offer data about trade volumes on the respective media markets, the share of activities abroad and the exchange between the sample countries. After collecting the data it will be evaluated resulting in a cartography that displays the market activities between the most important markets and countries.

The organizational analysis (2) starts with identifying the media companies involved in cross-border activities. The market data from the market analysis only provides aggregated insight. Thus, further document analysis of annual reports, company records, financial reports, and other sources is necessary to refine the cartography and to be able to name the media companies involved in cross-border communication and to identify those that are to be surveyed during the further procedure. Simultaneously, a standardized questionnaire about media-economic data of the selected media companies will be developed. The questionnaire shall be filled out by the media managers complement to the guided interviews.

The guided interviews are the core of the (3) management analysis. The latter is to gather information on the objectives and strategies of cross-border activities. Moreover, it will reveal the underlying motivations and conditions of the decision in favor of or against certain markets and geographical regions. The researchers will conduct about 50 Interviews with media managers in all sample countries. The data from all three analyses eventually will be combined and evaluated to answer the questions guiding the research (see research aims). Still, to fully understand the complex relations and structures of transnational management the data will be further amplified: From the companies that have been analyzed those that appear to be prototypical will be selected and surveyed in in-depth case studies. These case studies will comprise further in-depth interviews and an adapted organization maps method.