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An Investigation of Journalists’ Job Satisfaction in Bishkek, Capital of the Kyrgyz Republic Open Access

The results of a survey of journalists in the former Soviet republic of Kyrgyzstan (N=211) demonstrate that they primarily see their societal role as being to mobilize people with common interests and provide objective analysis. The media’s traditional role as a watchdog, meanwhile, was rated least important by journalists in the country, which is widely considered the “most democratic” in Central Asia. The study also found that the majority described themselves as being “neither satisfied nor dissatisfied” professionally, a feeling directly impacted by their income, sense of autonomy, and supervisor’s perceived ability. Low salary, disagreement with editorial policy, and excessive pressure were found to be the leading reasons that Kyrgyz journalists left the profession. This research extends previous knowledge of journalists’ job satisfaction by examining the often-overlooked region of Central Asia. The surveys were conducted between April 29 and May 19, 2016, primarily in the Russian and Kyrgyz languages.

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