Thursday, May 24, 2007

Greek PSB governance

I've been hunting for an English language description of the governance of the Greek PSB for a while now. I've found part of it:

The government introduced the broadcasting Law 230/1975 which abolished EIRT and, in its place, created Hellenic Radio and Television (ERT). ERT was a limited company whose only shareholder was the Greek state. It is characteristic that when the Bill was discussed in Parliament no party questioned either the state monopoly or the dominating role of the state over ERT (Alivisatos, 1986). The Law ensured tight governmental control of ERT and concentrated most effective power in the hands of the Director-General. The Director-General and the two assistant Directors-Generals were directly appointed (and dismissed) by the government. The Board of Governors, which had no real powers, was to be appointed following the decision of the Council of Ministers. The Director-General, who has autocratic power over ERT, is himself/herself at the absolute mercy of the government since his/her appointment (and dismissal) is a matter of 'political will' of the government. Clearly television was to be used neither as a 'public watchdog' nor for the development of a pluralist dialogue. It was, on the contrary, to be used to support the government of the day and its policies.


The Directors-General and directors of ERT were appointed and dismissed with great frequency, mainly because they ‘failed’ to cover adequately government’s policies. Between 1981 and 1989, for instance, there were thirteen chairmen and Directors-General and sixteen news-directors with an average term in office of about eight months.

This is from Georgia Chondroleou, "Policy networks in comparative perspective: media policy networks in Britain and Greece", presented at the ECPR 2001 conference.

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