Television in India is on the threshold of a major transformation as all of the nation’s analog signals were officially switched off on March 31, 2017. The digital switchover is a major priority for both the Indian government and the media industries, and they are devoting considerable resources to the digitization of the nation’s aging media infrastructure through the flagship program called “Digital India.” The primary objective of “Digital India,” as stated on the program website, is to “transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy.”
In this presentation, Dr. Kumar will critically examine how the switchover to digital television is taking place through the harmonization of state agendas, market forces and civil society in television and allied media industries. The International Telecommunications Union defines “harmonization” as an internationally-coordinated process of digitizing a range of public and private infrastructures to maximize the benefits of broadcasting and new media technologies around the world. By analyzing media industry debates, government policy reports and popular cultural discourses on the digital switchover in television, he will critically evaluate the political, economic and cultural implications of harmonization in public and private arenas of life in “Digital India.”
After the session, continue the conversation at The Hole in the Wall.