Our experts

Polyák Gábor

Gábor Polyák, lawyer, leader of the project

Dr Gábor Polyák works as a professor for media law and media policy and as the head of the Media and Communication Department of the Eötvös Loránd University. He also works for the Institute for Legal Studies of the Centre for Social Sciences as a senior research fellow. Further, he is researcher of Mertek Media Monitor, a Hungarian NGO dealing with media policy issues. His educational background includes law and media studies at the University of Pécs, Master of Laws degree in ICT law at the University of Vienna, PhD degree and habilitation at the University of Pécs. He teaches and does research in the fields of media law, IT law, media policy. In 2020, he was awarded by the Voltaire Prize for Tolerance, International Understanding and Respect for Differences of the University Potsdam. His last books are Medienpolitik in Osteuropa. Theoretischer Rahmen und mediale Praxis (Berlin: B & S Siebenhaar Verlag, 2018); Algoritmusok, keresők, közösségi oldalak és a jog – A forgalomirányító szolgáltatások szabályozása [Algorithms, Search Engines, Social Media – Regulation of Intermediaries] (Budapest: HVG-Orac, 2020)..

  Nagy Krisztina

Krisztina Nagy, lawyer

From 1996 to 2010, was the staff member of the media authority. Her specifications are: constitutional grounds and interrelations of the media law, legal means of child protection under the media law. She has published several studies in these subjects. Guest teacher of media law courses at Corvinus University of Budapest, at University of Pécs. PhD. student in the doctoral program of the Faculty of Law at the University of Pécs. Her PhD. research areas are: Child protection in the Digital Age, Media literacy regulatory issues.

 Urbán Ágnes

Ágnes Urbán, economist

Associate professor and chair of the Infocommunications Department at the Corvinus University of Budapest. She received her master’s degree in 1998 and followed up with a PhD degree that was awarded a grade of summa cum laude in 2006 (Corvinus). She is an instructor of the subjects Media Economics; Media Systems and Media Policies; and Media and Audience Research. She is also co-founder of Mertek Media Monitor media watchdog organization. Urbán’s main research areas are changes in media business models, trends in media consumption patterns, the evolution of the
Hungarian media market and the analysis of policy issues concerning media markets. She was involved in European research programmes in the recent years. Urbán is the author of some 100 Hungarian and English-language international publications in the fields of media and infocommunications. Her publications include books, book chapters, journal articles and conference presentations.


Ildikó Kovács, journalist, marketing communications specialist

After graduation in Hungarian-Cultural Management major at ELTE TFK, she made postgraduate studies at PTE and Budapesti Gazdasági Főiskola. in the last 15 years she worked for multinational in various managerial positions, where is obtained administrative, marketing and communications experience and now she is strenghten the NGO sector with these skills.

Petra Szávai, PhD student, media studies expert

She graduated in communication and media studies and is currently a student of the Doctoral Program “Language and Communication” at the University of Pécs. She is interested in the polarization of the public, especially in the research of different media outlets’ contents and their consuming audiences, her mainly preferred methods are in the field of quantitative analyses. She has been working for Mertek Media Monitor since 2017 as an external expert, now she is a research fellow and coordinator of the Hungarian team’s work in MEDIADELCOM project.

Kata Horváth, master student

She graduated in Communication and Media Studies and is currently a student at ELTE. Previously, she worked as a journalist for the online portals Index, Átlátszó and Mérce. Her research focuses on the phenomenon of disinformation and fact-checking in Hungary. She has worked as a research assistant on the projects HDMO – Hungarian Digital Media Observatory, the ELTE National Laboratory for Social Innovation (TINLAB) and with the research team of the Iscte-Instituto Universitário in Lisbon on the Portuguese part of the Newsreel – New Skills for the Next Generation of Journalists project.

External experts:

Marta Bencsik, journalist, lawyer

Graduated in legal studies in 1986 at University of Szeged. She in various legal jobs, besides wich, from 1988 she worked as journalist at the local tv and regional radio. Between 1993-1999 she was editor-reporter at Hungarian Public Radio. She worked for 11 years at the media authority, where she became head of the legal department. Her specializations are the legal practice of authorities, the public service media and balanced coverage. She has published several studies in these subjects.

Gábor Győri, senior analyst

He is a senior analyst at Policy Solutions, a Hungarian think tank. Previously, he worked as an analyst at the Demos Hungary Foundation, the Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of Children, Youth and Sports. He studied in the United States and received an MA in International Relations from the University of Chicago and a BA in Social Studies from Harvard University. He speaks English and German fluently and has a basic understanding of French.

Attila Mong, journalist

Journalism and media policy expert at think-tank Mertek (mertek.eu), and editor for atlatszo.hu, non-profit investigative news site. Ashoka Storyteller in Residence, Berlin John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University (2012-2013). Previously he was the host of the daily news show of the Hungarian Public Radio. In December 2010 he protested against the controversial media law by holding one minute of silence in his live program. Subsequently he was suspended from his post before leaving the radio definitively. Since 1996 he worked for various news outlets in Hungary. He was editor of origo.hu, Hungary’s biggest newssite (2011-2012), daily political talkshow host of private newsradio Inforadio (2000-2009), editor-in-chief of Manager Magazin, a Spiegel-owned business monthly (2005-2007), senior editor at Figyelo, business weekly (1999-2004), editor-reporter at Hungarian Public Radio (1995-98) and TV (1997-2000). Founder of the first marketing communication newsletter (1993-2000), editor of Kreativ magazine, (1994-2001). Author of a prize-winning book on one of Hungary’s greatest banking scandals, and beholder of various investigative journalism prizes (Pulitzer Memorial Prize 2004, Göbölyös József prize 2003). He was a Marshall Memorial Fellow of the German Marshall Fund in 2008. His latest investigative book on the history of relations between the Hungariancommunist regime and the IMF was published in November 2012. For this project he recieved grants from the Open Society Institute and the Hoover Institution, in 2011 he was visiting research fellow at the Hoover.

Sophie Schmalenberger

Universität Berlin in 2015, since September 2015 she is a M.A. student in European Studies at Aarhus University (Denmark) where she will complete her M.A. thesis focusing on the work of Hungarian NGOs in face of Democratic backsliding in Hungary. As an ERASMUS-student she lived in Göteborg for 5 months in 2013. The title of B.A Thesis was “Eurosceptic parties in Denmark and Sweden: Explaining divergent electoral success in the 2014 EP election.” From 2013-2015 she has been working as Student Assistant at Freie Universität, namely for the University´s Press Office, the Research- Group “the Transformative Power of Europe” and the Division „Communication Theory and Media Effects“(Institute for Media & Communication Studies). As Intern at Mertek Media Monitoring she spent 3 month in Hungary in autumn 2016, however she will uphold her professional relation with Mertek as external expert. Her main academic interests so far are issues touching upon democracy in the context of the EU, mostly combined with aspects of media, public sphere and political communication. Her language skills comprise German and English as well as intermediate levels of Dutch and Danish as well as basic knowledge of Swedish and French.

János Timár, lawyer, sociologist

In 1974, he earned a law degree from Eötvös Loránd University, and was student at ELTE Sociology Department. His first job was in the Mass Communication Research Centre, where in the first time he was dealing with the long-range planning at the media field, later he became a research fellow in the Department of Public Opinion Research. During the Hungarian Transition he founded with other colleagues the Median Public Opinion and Market Research Institute, where until 1996 he worked as a research leader. Meanwhile, as media expert helped the Fidesz and later the government in the preparations of the media law. In 1996, the parliament – after the nomination of Free Democrats – elected to a member of the media authority (ORTT) and this was repeated in 2000, 2004 and 2008. The work carried out by the termination of ORTT. Currently, the possibilities of early childhood media literacy is in his central concern. As an educator, he teaches and taught media law at the University of Pécs, (postgraduate training) and at ELTE and Kodolányi College.

Erik Uszkiewicz, lawyer

He is specializing in the field of protection of fundamental rights, he wrote several publications. He gratueted in law at ELTE with summa cum laude in 2011. From September 2011 he is a PhD candidate in Legal and Political Science program at ELTE University. His research program focuses on prejudice and discrimnation in the jurisdictional practise.