Tagged / media

Science and the Media – Invitation to participate

The new ‘Science and the Media’ research cluster, situated in the Media School, is holding a mini-conference on Wednesday, 12 December from 2 to 4:30 pm (in CG01, Christchurch House).

We are hoping to involve all BU colleagues and doctoral students engaged in research on a topic related to this broad theme, so please consider joining us.

If you would like to make a short, informal presentation describing what you are researching (15 minutes or so, followed by questions), kindly get in touch with one of us asap. We will be pleased to add you to the afternoon’s programme.

Many thanks, and with best wishes

Stuart (and Shelley and An)

 

Brief bios:

Stuart Allan’s science-related publications include Environmental Risks and the Media (co-edited, 2000), Media, Risk and Science (2002), and Nanotechnology, Risk and Communication (co-authored, 2009). Recent co-written journal articles have appeared in New Genetics and Society (2005), Science Communication (2005), Health, Risk & Society (2007), Public Understanding of Science (2009), and Journal of Risk Research (2010), amongst others. In 2011, he edited a special issue of Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism focusing on the topic ‘Science Journalism in a Digital Age.’

Shelley Thompson lectures in Corporate and Marketing Communications in the Media School at BU. Shelley’s current research explores the framing of nanotechnology in the mainstream press, in both print and online contexts. Her research interests around science primarily link to communicating science to a non-specialist audience, especially looking at the ways the mainstream media frame emerging science and technology.

An Nguyen is Senior Lecturer in Journalism in the Media School at BU. His research interests include public engagement in science debates in the media and the role of journalists in facilitating that process. An area where he has explored these issues in-depth is public connections to climate change. He is writing a book, Science News and the Public, for Bloomsbury Academic.

Media Education Summit 2012 @ BU.

This week, BU hosted the 5th annual Media Education Summit. Over 60 delegates attended from all over the world, to hear a wide range presentations and to take part in themed conversations about the scholarship of learning and teaching in our field.

Keynote speakers included Caroline Norbury, the new Chief Executive of Creative England. She set the scene for the Summit and challenged all media educators to “get out more”!

Next we had Ian Livingstone – remember the Fighting Fantasy adventure books in the 80s? He started the Games Workshop and is now President of the videogame company, Eidos, home of Lara Croft. Ian talked about his NextGen report and the ICT curriculum in schools, which is now gaining quite a lot of traction.

Paul Lewis from The Guardian shared his thoughts on collaboration and what he called “layered journalism”. He used his own reporting of the riots last year in London and Birmingham as a case study, and showed how he used Twitter both as a source and a means to get close to the unfolding story.

Jon Dovey from the University of the West of England talked about his REACT project, which is a collaboration between UWE, Bristol, Bath, Cardiff and Exeter Universities. Funded by the AHRC, the project aims to bring together arts and humanities researchers and creative economy companies to work on a series of ‘Sandbox’ initiatives. It’s probably the best example of ‘Fusion’ I have ever seen, and has given us all a lot to think about.

The Media School’s Centre for Excellence in Media Practice (CEMP) started the Summit in 2008, as a forum to bring together those in the field of media and creative education. Since then we’ve been to Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham and London and we are planning to hold the 2014 Summit outside the UK.

We filmed the keynotes, and they will start appearing on the website soon, if anyone is interested:

http://www.cemp.ac.uk/summit/2012/

Proposed Copyright Hub to Streamline Copyright Licensing

Recommendations for the establishment of a Digital Copyright Exchange, contained in a final report into its feasibility, have just been published following a Department of Business, Innovation and Skills funded study undertaken by Richard Hooper, click here.

Given the amount of digital material available and likely to be created in the future, it is essential to streamline the process of copyright licensing. Having easier mechanisms to obtain the appropriate copyright licences will benefit rights holders and potential licensees.

The report recommends the creation of a not-for-profit industry-led, industry-funded Copyright Hub, and the establishment of a steering group to drive forward and oversee the design and implementation of the Hub.

The Copyright Hub will have five main purposes, to:

  • act as a signpost and be a navigation mechanism to the complex world of copyright
  • be the place to go for copyright education
  • be the place where any copyright owner can choose to register works, the associated rights to those works, permitted uses and licences granted
  • be the place for potential licensees to go for easy to use, transparent, low transaction cost copyright licensing
  • be one of the authoritative places where prospective users of orphan works can go to demonstrate they have done proper, reasonable and due diligence searches for the owners of those works before they digitise them

The Government’s response to these proposals is awaited.

Update on the Culture and MEDIA programme replacement ‘Creative Europe’

The EC has released five short videos where questions on the Creative Europe (the successor to the current Culture and Media programmes, starting in 2014) are answered.  The videos cover questions such as why the proposal for the new programme combines the current Culture and Media programmes, the planned budget increase, the new focus on audience development, the new finance facility and the new programme objectives and are answered by Ann Branch, Head of the Culture Programme and Actions Unit from the Directorate General for Education and Culture (DG EAC).

These videos give you a great insight into what may come under this Programme and will allow you to really make plans for applying. You can also read this very helpful UKRO article on the Creative Europe Info Day to get even more insight.

 

Virgin Media Shorts Competition Opens to Entries (UK)

The Virgin Media Shorts, which is a short film competition that champions undiscovered talent, has announced that its 2012 competition is now open to entries.

The competition is open to filmmakers and gives them the chance to show their work in cinemas, on TV, online and on mobile (via the mobile internet).  Prizes include: 13 film makers win a chance to show their work on 214 cinema screens nationwide; one winner will receive £30,000 to make their next film; and a People’s Choice winner will receive £5,000 of film funding and BFI mentoring.  Films must be in English or subtitled in English and be of a duration of up to 2 minutes and 20 seconds. The deadline for entries is 12 noon on the 12th July 2012.

Funding available from the MEDIA programme

Support to Video on Demand and Digital Cinema Distribution:The Video on Demand and Digital Cinema Distribution scheme constitutes one of the ways in which the MEDIA 2007 programme ensures that the latest technologies and trends are incorporated into the business practices of beneficiaries of the programme.The main objective of this scheme is to support the creation and exploitation of catalogues of European works to be distributed digitally across borders to a wider audience and/or to cinema exhibitors through advanced distribution services, integrating where necessary digital security systems in order to protect online content. The deadline is June 25th.

Support for the implementation of Pilot Projects: The programme may support Pilot Projects to ensure that it adapts to market developments, with a particular emphasis on the introduction and utilisation of information and communication technologies. The deadline is June 18th.

Notes on Creative Europe proposal event available

A few weeks ago I attende an event to discuss the EC’s Creative Europe proposal, which could be the successor to the MEDIA Programme. which looks like it will have a whopping €1.8 billion budget for 2014-2020. Notes from the event can be found on our I drive I:\CRKT\Public\RDU\Media Programme  and feature an outline of the proposal for Creative Europe, key stats and figures, what topics will be covered and key questions raised on the day.

Presenting student research internationally

It’s a long way in place and time from October 2010 in the Media School to March 2012 at the International Public Relations Research Conference at the University of Miami in sunny Florida. That’s the journey that BAPR graduate Lauren Willmott has taken from first thoughts on her dissertation to presenting the results at the conference, along with academics and practitioners from 24 countries and over 100 other papers.

Lauren Willmott and Prof Tom Watson at IPRRC Miami

Lauren’s research on the use of Twitter as a crisis communication tactic was supervised by Prof Tom Watson.  It reviewed two transport crises in 2009 and 2010 and investigated the role and usage of the 140-character medium in keeping passengers, their families and the media abreast of the news.

The investigation won her the Wessex CIPR award for the best public relations dissertation and also helped Lauren gain a position at the leading international PR consultancy A&REdelman in London where she works on Olympics-linked accounts. The firm also sponsored her attendance at the conference.

With Prof Watson’s assistance, an abstract from the dissertation was submitted to the prestigious Miami conference, and chosen for presentation. “This is a highly competitive review process with an acceptance rate of less than 50 per cent. Lauren’s research was pitted against some of PR’s best known academic researchers and so it was a real success that the jointly-authored paper was accepted,” said Prof Watson. “It was also the only paper accepted from a first author/early researcher who was not on a postgraduate or doctoral programme.”

So on Saturday March 10, Lauren presented her paper and got feedback (and applause) on the paper and for next stages of research. Amongst the responses to Lauren and Tom was that the paper’s standard was much higher than expected from US bachelor-level graduates: “Are all your students producing work as good as this?”

“Lauren’s achievement in presenting her paper at this high international level shows that BU students, with supportive supervision, can share the stage with the best researchers. It’s been a rewarding experience for everyone involved,” said Prof Watson.

Lauren’s verdict was, “It was amazing to be given the opportunity to present my dissertation in front of professionals who had inspired my research topic. The conference enabled me to network with a diverse range of PR professionals and as a result I have been presented with several opportunities such as Skyping into a lecture of students at the University of South Florida to talk about working in a London agency.”

Interested in Media or IT? Then these new Calls for Proposals may be of interest…

MEDIA 2007: The EC  has launched a call for proposals for the provision of training under the MEDIA 2007 Programme. One of the measures to be implemented under this Decision involves improving the continuous vocational training of professionals in the audiovisual sector, so as to give them the know-how and skills needed to create competitive products on the European and other markets.  The call for proposals EACEA/5/12 is the last continuous training call to be launched under MEDIA 2007 and offers a two-year framework partnership agreement. The deadline is 16 April 2012.

CIP-ICT PSP: The EC has launched the 2012 CIP-ICT PSP call under the Information and Communication Technologies Policy Support Programme (ICT PSP) which is part of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (2007 to 2013). There are a number of funding opportunities available including pilot work and thematic networks. The deadline is 15.05.12 and the indicative budget is 127m Euros.

Towards ‘Impact’ – promoting research online

As the spectre of “Impact” looms before us in REF 2014, I’d like to share a case study on developing interest in research in academic and practitioner communities. I don’t claim that it’s best practice but there may be some ideas for others to consider.

Two of my related areas of research in the public relations field are measurement and evaluation of campaign effectiveness and the history of public relations. Over the past two years I have brought them together in historical research into the evolution of public relations measurement and evaluation. This has already resulted in conference papers and a publication in the leading impact factored journal, Public Relations Review.

 My most recent research has been into a controversial measure called Advertising Value Equivalence (AVE). It is widely used but has been effectively banned by leading public relations professional bodies. Next month, I will be presenting a paper on the history of AVE at the International Public Relations Research Conference in theUS. That paper will later be revised and submitted for a leading journal.

 Knowing there is a world-wide interest the debate over AVE, I prepared a short “popular” version of the paper and targeted it at the Research Conversations blog of the US-based Institute for Public Relations, which is well-regarded and widely read.

It appeared on February 15 as ‘So, Where Did AVEs Come From, Anyway?‘ and immediately started an online discussion.

Taking the article’s URL, I then placed it with introductory text on three relevant LinkedIn groups for PR history, media measurement and theUK’s lead professional body. Online discussions have taken place on two of these groups. The URL was also sent out via my two Twitter accounts (@historyofpr and twatson1709). Each has resulted in retweets of the URL, including some by leading social media commentators. There have also been positive comments.

Within just two days, the use of social media has enabled the summarised research to reach potentially interested, relevant audiences around the world. And I have still to present the paper next month. Only time will tell whether “Impact” has been created but social media has help pave the way for knowledge transfer and industry engagement.

 Any feedback on how I could have organised the social media dissemination more efficiently would be welcomed.

Prof Tom Watson, The Media School

Consumer behaviour in virtual worlds

A prestigious journal has awarded two Bournemouth University (BU) academics the ‘Best Paper’ accolade for their work in the largely unstudied domain of consumer behaviour in digital virtual spaces, including video games, virtual communities and the web.

‘Concepts and practices of digital virtual consumption’, by BU’s Dr Janice Denegri-Knottand Dr Mike Molesworth, was among the most downloaded work published by Consumption Markets and Culture last year.

The paper examines digital virtual consumption (such as owning luxury cars in a video game), the relationship it has within the real material world and the appeal of consumption that is deprived of a material, physically tangible form.

Flying planes in a computer gameDenegri-Knott and Molesworth think of consumption on spaces like eBay, Amazon and World of Warcraft as somewhere between the consumers’ imagination and material consumption, and believe it is charged with transformative potential for its users.

Consumers can fulfil all sorts of daydreams, such as finding a designer dress on eBay, or performing the fantasy of being a powerful wizard. They don’t just look and ask ‘what might it be like’, but may ‘try on’ being an entrepreneur, someone with wealth, a collector, a trader, an advertiser, a criminal, a hero, a warrior, or many other ways of being.

Their roles are enhanced as the scripts available to them expand and can be tested within relatively small timescales. The digital virtual individual may be an avid collector one year, a warrior hero the next, and a successful entrepreneur the year after that. The video game player may be a successful criminal one week and a racing driver the next.

Denegri-Knott and Molesworth believe more emphasis is needed on the relationship between the virtual realm and the real-world and, as digital virtual consumption is largely unstudied, they propose an integrative view for further research.

“The paper was written in the spirit of mapping out potential avenues for research, and also to give us some kind of conceptual frame to make sense of consumption in emerging digital virtual spaces,” said Dr Denegri-Knott.  “We now have a body of work that looks at the way in which users consume through eBay, from which we have been able to draw some insights on the acceleration of consumer desire and the problems this creates. We now would like to develop the theme of transformative potential in digital virtual consumption; that is to see how consumers make sense of their experiences and how they integrate these into their everyday lives.”

The pair are also now researching the experience of owning digital virtual goods, in particular the ways in which consumers become attached to certain goods, and how they maintain their preferential stature.

Dr Denegri-Knott concluded: “We were both delighted and surprised to hear that our paper was so well received by the readers of the journal and by the judging panel.  This is a real achievement for the Emerging Consumer Cultures Group (ECCG).”

Funding with a Media Flavour – UK

At a recent Media School meeting attendees asked us to outline some of the common funders, so here is a general overview of those funders with a Media flavour both domestic and further a field.  Part One concentrates on the key UK funders and in the next few days we’ll post information on potential EU funders and schemes.

 

Research Councils

The two primary research councils for media-focused research are the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC) which are responsible for funding the vast majority of arts and humanities in the UK. The success rates for the AHRC are the highest of all RC’s (see the recent blog article) and it offers standard grants,  networking grants, collaborative doctoral awards and early career research grants.

The RCs also focus on particular initiatives to address issues of intellectual and wider cultural, social or economic urgency, these schemes tend to have higher success rates than the standard grants so are always worth consideration. Information on AHRC initiatives can be found here.

An overview  – AHRC Early Career Research Grants:

Early Career Research Grants are intended to assist new researchers at the start of their careers in gaining experience of managing and leading research projects. They look to support well-defined research projects enabling individual researchers to collaborate with, and bring benefits to, other individuals and organisations through the conduct of research.

They also enjoy higher success rates than standard grants, there are no set submission dates, projects can last up to 60 months and should cost between £20,000 and £200,000 fEC.

To be eligible as an early career researcher you must be within eight years of the award of your PhD or equivalent professional training or within six years of your first academic appointment.

Further information on all opportunities can be found here – AHRC ESRCs

British Academy

The British Academy supports excellent ideas, individuals and intellectual resources in the humanities and social sciences.  In particular, the Academy enables UK researchers to work with scholars and resources in other countries, sustain a British research presence in various parts of the world and help to attract overseas scholars to the UK.

An overview  – International Partnership and Mobility Scheme:

Aims to support the development of partnerships between the UK and other areas of the world where research excellence would be strengthened by new, innovative initiatives and links. Awards are for research partnerships between scholars in the UK and scholars in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, Middle East, South Asia, or East Asia.

Partnerships might include a range of related activities, and mobility should form an integral part of proposals. Workshops and seminars should form an integral part of the programme. The main purpose of the funding is to cover travel and maintenance costs, although costs related to other eligible activities will be considered. Partnerships including a training element and involving scholars in the early stages in their career will be looked on favourably.

Grants are offered up to a maximum of £10,000 per year for a period of one year or three years. The submission deadline is 8th February 2012.

Further information can be found here – British Academy International Partnerships

In addition to these big UK funders, there are also some smaller more focused funders which may appeal to the interests of specific research groups within the school. For instance conference grants offered by the The Modern Humanities Research Association (MHRA) could be of interest to the Narrative Research Group – information can be found here MHRA.

 

MEDIA 2007 Call for Proposals: Promotion and Access to Markets

The EC has launched a call for proposals for the promotion and access to markets under the Media 2007 Programme.

The objectives include:

  • facilitating and encouraging the promotion and movement of European audiovisual and cinema works at trade shows, fairs and audiovisual festivals in Europe and around the globe, insofar as such events may play an important role in the promotion of European works and the networking of professionals, and
  • encouraging the networking of European operators, by supporting joint activities on the European and international markets by national public or private promotion bodies.

The deadline for sending in applications is: 22 December 2011 for activities starting between 1 June 2012 and up to 31 December 2012. The guidelines of the call for proposals, as well as the application forms, are available from the European Commission’s website.

EC Media- related i2i Audiovisual funding available

The EC has launched a call for proposals for the development, distribution, promotion and training of i2i audiovisual under the Media 2007 Programme.

The objective of this support is to facilitate independent European production companies’ access to funding from credit and financial institutions, by co-financing part of the costs of:

  • insurance for audiovisual productions: Module 1 — Support the ‘Insurance’ item in a production budget,
  • completion guarantee for the production of an audiovisual work: Module 2 — Support for the item ‘Completion Guarantee’ in a production budget, and
  • credit financing for the production of a work: Module 3 — Support for the item ‘Financial Costs’ in a production budget.

Applications for this call for proposals must be submitted at the latest by:

  • 6 January 2012, for projects with an earliest start date 1 July 2011,
  • 6 June 2012, for projects with an earliest start date 1 December 2011

The guidelines and application forms of this call for proposals may be found on the European Commission’s website.