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Giulia Manica

Media, University of Nottingham

Thesis title:

Italian Television´┐Żs Renaissance: Global TV Drama and the Revitalisation of the Industry

This project examines the rapidly shifting Italian television landscape in the current decade, focusing on the production of original high-end drama aimed at exportability from 2012. Specifically, the thesis investigates how the Italian public service broadcaster RAI is responding to changes and competitiveness in the reconfiguring of the contemporary mediascape by embracing the dynamics of global television. It focuses on the new strategy of the coproduction of prestige original television drama expressly conceived and created for global audiences.

The research taps into current debates concerning the challenges posed to public service broadcasting by technology convergence and audience fragmentation and the emergence of new forms of transnational television, as well as new sites of production, creative practices, and narrative strategies within European media production cultures. These debates have not yet been considered in relation to RAI’s contemporary production of premium drama, particularly adopting an ‘integrated cultural-industrial approach’ (Caldwell, 2009) to investigate the textual, cultural, but most importantly the industrial significance of this new wave of transnational drama through selected case studies.

The aim is to explore the construction of a renewed production system in Italy focused on high-end drama as a key tool to drive innovation, particularly for the public service, and significantly contribute to the creation of a new international hub for co-produced drama.

Research Area

  • Media


Forthcoming (2020)



Between Public Interest and Editorial Distinctiveness: Rethinking Public Values through RAI's RaiPlay, Eighth Annual Screen Industries In East-Central Europe (SIECE) Conference 'Public Service Media's Online Strategies: Industry Concepts and Critical Investigations', Prague 22-23 November 2019

Rethinking digital media spatial and scale logics: Netflix geographies through a multi-layer graph approach, 'Infrastructures and Inequalities: Media Industries, Digital Cultures and Politics' Conference, University of Helsinki, 21-22 October 2019

From 'behind' to 'beyond' the screen: My Brilliant Friend's TV production story of a mediated cultural encounter, 'Elena Ferrante in a Global Context' Conference, University of Durham, 7-8 June 2019.


Two steps forward and one step back: the long historical route to contemporary transnational drama in Italy, 'Transnational Television Drama. Tastes, travels and trends' Conference, University of Aarhus, 6-9 June 2018.

Transnational Italian TV Drama: Toward an "Impact Narrative" of Mediated Screen Encounters, East Midlands Doctoral Network (EMDoc) Postgraduate Research Conference 'Impact and Exchange: making connections beyond the academy', Bishop Grosseteste University, Lincoln, 19 September 2018. 

Public Engagement & Impact

Institutional roles

YECREA representative of the Media Industries and Cultural Production section (http://yecrea.eu/representatives/):

  • Co-organiser of the YECREA Seminars on 'Alternative scholarly communication for young scholars'  (https://www.helsinki.fi/en/conferences/infrastructures-and-inequalities/young-scholar-yecrea-seminars), ECREA off-year conference on 'Infrastructures and Inequalities: Media Industries, Digital Cultures and Politics', University of Helsinki, 21-22 October 2019
  • Co-organiser and Programme Chair of the YECREA Roundtable on 'Online Curation and Methods To Study Its Implications For Public Service Values', ECREA/Charles University Conference on 'Public Service Media's Online Strategies: Industry Concepts and Critical Investigations", National Film Archive of Prague, 22-23 November 2019

Other Research Interests

production studies, public service media, transnational television, promotional screen industries