Burnout in Journalists: A systematic literature review


The present study aims to provide a concise, comprehensive, and systematic review of the quantitative literature relating to the experience of burnout in journalists of various specialties and mediums. The systematic review method adopted is that prescribed by Fink (2010), which contains three main elements: Sampling the literature, screening the literature, and extracting data. Results indicate that journalists most at risk of burnout are females who are younger, with fewer years of journalism experience, working in small circulation newspapers. Editors and reporters seem to experience higher levels of burnout than those in other roles, as do journalists in non-management positions. The thorough and structured process adopted in this review provides the ability to assert with some degree of certainty what areas within the burnout and journalism literature require further consideration. This review emphasises and problematises the large focus on male reporters in newspaper settings, settings that are becoming less significant over time. Studies have tended to focus on reporters, without providing a convincing a priori rationale. What is lacking is consideration of other role groups central to broadcast news, such as camera-operators. A range of methodological and theoretical issues and future areas of research are discussed.


MacDonald, J. B., Saliba, A. J., Hodgins, G., & Ovington, L. A. (2016). Burnout in journalists: A systematic literature review. Burnout Research, 3(2), 34–44.