Protest Mashup

Media & Communications

We investigate the rapidly changing role of data in communication, as well as digital media more broadly.  

We take a unique, interdisciplinary approach to this work, bringing together media experts from across the College and beyond. Some of our members take media and communications as their object of study, whilst others engage in research as a form of media practice. Our outlook is global. We study Scottish and British media, as well as media in Africa, East and South Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and the Pacific. We are all profoundly interested in meaning-making, trust and the exercise of power.

This cluster is led by Dr Kate Wright.

Featured Research: Dr George Karekwaivanane

George Karekwaivanane’s research interests focus on investigating the diverse ways that digital media is reshaping social, political and economic life in Africa. His work investigates how people communicate digitally about politics and mobilisation in authoritarian political contexts. George's work also explores the ways that law and legal struggles can be used to shed light on social and political processes in African history, in the context of intersections between law, politics and society in Zimbabwe.

George is an editor of the Journal of Southern African Studies. His monograph, The Struggle over State Power in Zimbabwe: Law and Politics since 1950, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2017. His most recent publication, titled 'Zimbabwe: Legal Practitioners, Politics and Transformation Since 1980', features in Lawyers in 21st Century Societies, Vol 1 (2020).

Our Areas of Expertise

We carry out research into the political economies of journalism, news organisations, management and elites. We also study changes in journalistic practice, including historical shifts, the entrance of new actors into contemporary journalism, and the rapidly changing relationship of journalism to data and social media. We are interested in the relationship of journalism to different forms of advocacy, including humanitarian and human rights activism, party politics and the creation of ‘fake news’. Finally, our members use innovative, interdisciplinary methods to study audience responses to news and current affairs coverage.

Bronwyn Jones
Interests:
journalism
artificial intelligence
intelligible AI
ethical AI
public service media
news production

Bronwyn Jones

Journalism
e: bjones33@ed.ac.uk
Jean-Benoit_Falisse
Interests:
social media activism
mediatised conflict
Great Lakes region
primary healthcare
community governance
data extractivism

Jean-Benoit Falisse

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: jb.falisse@ed.ac.uk
Sarah Liu
Interests:
gender
social movements
women’s political representation
women’s political participation
migration
citizenship
Asian politics
media

Sarah Liu

Data
Journalism
Political Communications
e: sarah.liu@ed.ac.uk
Ebital Mahadeen
Interests:
Arabic news
representations of gender and sexuality

Ebtihal Mahadeen

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: Ebtihal.Mahadeen@ed.ac.uk
Emma Hunter
Interests:
colonial and post-colonial print media
publics
journalism
Africa

Emma Hunter

Journalism
Political Communications
e: Emma.Hunter@ed.ac.uk
Rachel CS
Interests:
media diversity
Europe
media regulation

Rachael Craufurd Smith

Digital Design
Journalism
e: r.c.smith@ed.ac.uk
Kate Wright
Interests:
journalism
NGOs
media funding
freelancing
media production practice
humanitarian and human rights campaigning

Kate Wright

Journalism
Political Communications
e: Kate.Wright@ed.ac.uk
Dave O'Brien
Interests:
socio-economic class
inequality
newsrooms and the creative industries

Dave O'Brien

Data
Journalism
Screen Studies
e: d.obrien@ed.ac.uk
Andrew Clausen
Interests:
investigative journalism
whistleblowing
accountability

Andrew Clausen

Journalism
e: Andrew.Clausen@ed.ac.uk
Walid Magdy
Interests:
social media
computational social science
natural language processing
data mining

Walid Magdy

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: wmagdy@inf.ed.ac.uk
Corentin Curchod
Interests:
algorithms and work
digital economy and government
social media and journalism
digital media
fake news

Corentin Curchod

Data
Journalism
Social Media
e: corentin.curchod@ed.ac.uk
Raquel Ribeiro
Interests:
Angola
Cuba
arts journalism

Raquel Ribeiro

Journalism
e: Raquel.Ribeiro@ed.ac.uk
Paolo Cavaliere
Interests:
freedom of speech
new media
IT law

Paulo Cavaliere

Journalism
e: Paolo.Cavaliere@ed.ac.uk
Chris Carter
Interests:
management
organisations
the BBC
media elites

Chris Carter

Journalism
e: chris.carter@ed.ac.uk
Ewa Luger
Interests:
human-computer interaction
human-data interaction
intelligible AI
news production
ethics
consent

Ewa Luger

Data
Digital Design
Journalism
e: Ewa.Luger@ed.ac.uk
Ismay Milford
Interests:
twentieth-century East Africa
decolonisation and internationalism
journalism training
global news

Ismay Milford

Journalism
e: ismay.milford@ed.ac.uk

We study how social media shapes, and is shaped by, a variety of different issues and practices. These include military conflict and interpersonal violence, health beliefs and behaviour, and political attitudes or events, such as those associated with Brexit. Our members' interdisciplinary research explores how social media captures audience members’ attention and shapes their emotional and cognitive responses in ways which shape the decisions they make. We also study the cultural and sociological aspects of social media, including humour and ‘digital detoxification’ practices. Some researchers engage with industry bodies to develop software to better cope with the more problematic aspects of social media, such as the dissemination of ‘fake news’.

John Lee
Interests:
rich media in learning
graphics in reasoning and learning
computing and cognition in design
multimodal dialogue
informal data

John Lee

Data
Digital Design
Social Media
e: J.Lee@ed.ac.uk
Eric Laurier
Interests:
ethnomethodology
mobile media
Youtube as archive
maps in use
media production
comics as research

Eric Laurier

Social Media
e: Eric.Laurier@ed.ac.uk
Claudia Pagliari
Interests:
social media
misinformation
health
society
government
policy-making
digital ethics

Claudia Pagliari

Data
Social Media
e: claudia.pagliari@ed.ac.uk
Jean-Benoit_Falisse
Interests:
social media activism
mediatised conflict
Great Lakes region
primary healthcare
community governance
data extractivism

Jean-Benoit Falisse

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: jb.falisse@ed.ac.uk
Corentin Curchod
Interests:
algorithms and work
digital economy and government
social media and journalism
digital media
fake news

Corentin Curchod

Data
Journalism
Social Media
e: corentin.curchod@ed.ac.uk
Jolyon_Mitchell
Interests:
media and post-conflict countries
peace processes
religion

Jolyon Mitchell

Social Media
e: Jolyon.Mitchell@ed.ac.uk
Nick Prior
Interests:
digital culture
music
popular culture
East Asia

Nick Prior

Digital Design
Social Media
e: n.prior@ed.ac.uk
Julie Cupples
Interests:
media convergence
indigenous media
popular geopolitics
cultural studies
activism
Latin America
Aotearoa New Zealand

Julie Cupples

Political Communications
Social Media
e: Julie.Cupples@ed.ac.uk
George K
Interests:
social media
protest
diaspora
digital publics and counterpublics
Zimbabwe

George Karekwaivanane

Political Communications
Social Media
e: G.karekwaivanane@ed.ac.uk
Smita Kheria
Interests:
authorship
copyright
creative industries
creative practitioners
online creative communities
ownership
access
intellectual property

Smita Kheria

Copyright, intellectual property, access
Social Media
e: smita.kheria@ed.ac.uk
Maggie_Dwyer
Interests:
social media
security
Africa
peacekeeping

Maggie Dwyer

Social Media
e: M.Dwyer@ed.ac.uk
Ebital Mahadeen
Interests:
Arabic news
representations of gender and sexuality

Ebtihal Mahadeen

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: Ebtihal.Mahadeen@ed.ac.uk
Laura Cram
Interests:
neuropolitics of political communication
cognitive framing in social media
symbols
identities
trust and emotion in political narrative

Laura Cram

Data
Political Communications
Social Media
e: Laura.Cram@ed.ac.uk
Chris Perkins
Interests:
memory
student politics
the left in Japan
film

Chris Perkins

Screen Studies
Social Media
e: Chris.Perkins@ed.ac.uk
Karen Gregory
Interests:
digital sociology
digital labour
platform labour
ethnography
digital qualitative methods

Karen Gregory

Social Media
e: K.Gregory@ed.ac.uk
Robin Hill
Interests:
human-computer interaction
decision making and explainability
psychology of communication
responses to audiovisual media
data visualisation
neuropolitics

Robin Hill

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: r.l.hill@ed.ac.uk
Clare Lllewellyn
Interests:
social media
UGC
biographical data
neuropolitics

Clare Llewellyn

Data
Political Communications
Social Media
e: clare.llewellyn@ed.ac.uk
Walid Magdy
Interests:
social media
computational social science
natural language processing
data mining

Walid Magdy

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: wmagdy@inf.ed.ac.uk
Maria Wolters
Interests:
digital communication in eHealth
accessibility and inclusion
human-computer interaction
intercultural communication

Maria Wolters

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: maria.wolters@ed.ac.uk
Ben Marder
Interests:
digital consumer behaviour
digital identity
user-generated content
impression management
review sites
tourist motivations
social media
travel photography

Ben Marder

Data Analytics
Technologies in Tourism
Visitor Attitudes, Behaviour & Flow
Political Communications
Social Media
e: ben.marder@ed.ac.uk
Kate Orton-Johnson
Interests:
digital detoxing
sociology of online humour
digital sociology
digital culture
digital leisure

Kate Orton-Johnson

Digital engagement, learning and participation
Social Media
e: K.Orton-Johnson@ed.ac.uk
Tom Molony
Interests:
social media
security
Africa
African politics

Thomas Molony

Political Communications
Social Media
e: Thomas.Molony@ed.ac.uk
Lachlan Urquhart
Interests:
IT law
human-computer interaction
cyber security
data privacy

Lachlan Urquhart

Data
Digital Design
Social Media
e: lachlan.urquhart@ed.ac.uk

Our members study cinema, documentary film, television and other screen-based media. Some scholars are practitioners who engage in award-winning forms of research-as-practice. Others undertake empirical and theoretical investigations of the ways in which the screen animates social, political, aesthetic and economic relations, drawing on a range of disciplinary and critical perspectives from area studies, the arts and humanities, social anthropology, human geography, international development, and participatory politics. 

Chris Perkins
Interests:
memory
student politics
the left in Japan
film

Chris Perkins

Screen Studies
Social Media
e: Chris.Perkins@ed.ac.uk
David Sorfa
Interests:
film philosophy
phenomenology
film theory
film criticism
Czech and European cinema
classical Hollywood
existentialism

David Sorfa

Screen Studies
e: David.Sorfa@ed.ac.uk
Lotte Hoek
Interests:
media anthropology
visual culture
cinema
Bangladesh

Lotte Hoek

Screen Studies
e: lotte.hoek@ed.ac.uk
Dave O'Brien
Interests:
socio-economic class
inequality
newsrooms and the creative industries

Dave O'Brien

Data
Journalism
Screen Studies
e: d.obrien@ed.ac.uk
Jonny Murray
Interests:
film theory
film history
contemporary cinema
film festivals
popular music
design

Jonny Murray

Screen Studies
e: jonny.murray@ed.ac.uk
Andrew Connor
Interests:
digital design
sound design
animation
virtual reality
game design

Andrew Connor

Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: Andrew.Connor@ed.ac.uk
Tom Boylston
Interests:
games
augmented reality
religion and media
anthropology
games and mental health
collecting and value

Tom Boylston

Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: tom.boylston@ed.ac.uk
Charlotte Gleghorn
Interests:
authorship
Latin American film studies
Indigenous and Afrodescendant media

Charlotte Gleghorn

Political Communications
Screen Studies
e: Charlotte.Gleghorn@ed.ac.uk
Merlin Seller
Interests:
phenomenology
horror and queer studies
games
film
nonhuman
representation
everyday aesthetics

Merlin Seller

Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: merlin.seller@ed.ac.uk
Ita Jansen
Interests:
Latin America
documentary film-making
world cinema
film practice
indigenous cinema

Itandehui Jansen

Screen Studies
e: I.Jansen@ed.ac.uk
Emma Davie
Interests:
documentary film-making

Emma Davie

Screen Studies
e: e.davie@ed.ac.uk
Jules Rawlinson
Interests:
digital arts
sound studies
interactive media
immersive media
game audio
audiovisual

Jules Rawlinson

Data
Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: Jules.Rawlinson@ed.ac.uk

In addition to our work on the visual representation of data, cluster members analyse and design different kinds of digital media, including comics, games and immersive media. They also study how digital media shape the lived experiences, cultures and practices of users, including their interactions with space and place. Finally, cluster members are interested in using digital design to solve problems in the ‘real world’, as well as supporting those working in these areas within the creative industries in several ways, including investigating the application of copyright within online media.

Chris Speed
Interests:
design informatics
blockchain
internet of things
prototypes
workshops
design thinking
digital economy

Chris Speed

Data
Design Informatics and Data Science
Digital Design
e: c.speed@ed.ac.uk
Maria Wolters
Interests:
digital communication in eHealth
accessibility and inclusion
human-computer interaction
intercultural communication

Maria Wolters

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: maria.wolters@ed.ac.uk
Merlin Seller
Interests:
phenomenology
horror and queer studies
games
film
nonhuman
representation
everyday aesthetics

Merlin Seller

Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: merlin.seller@ed.ac.uk
Ewa Luger
Interests:
human-computer interaction
human-data interaction
intelligible AI
news production
ethics
consent

Ewa Luger

Data
Digital Design
Journalism
e: Ewa.Luger@ed.ac.uk
John Lee
Interests:
rich media in learning
graphics in reasoning and learning
computing and cognition in design
multimodal dialogue
informal data

John Lee

Data
Digital Design
Social Media
e: J.Lee@ed.ac.uk
Nick Prior
Interests:
digital culture
music
popular culture
East Asia

Nick Prior

Digital Design
Social Media
e: n.prior@ed.ac.uk
Andrew Connor
Interests:
digital design
sound design
animation
virtual reality
game design

Andrew Connor

Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: Andrew.Connor@ed.ac.uk
Rachel CS
Interests:
media diversity
Europe
media regulation

Rachael Craufurd Smith

Digital Design
Journalism
e: r.c.smith@ed.ac.uk
Benjamin Bach
Interests:
data visualisation
virtual/mixed reality
human-computer interaction
networks

Benjamin Bach

Data
Design Informatics and Data Science
Digital Design
e: bbach@ed.ac.uk
Tom Boylston
Interests:
games
augmented reality
religion and media
anthropology
games and mental health
collecting and value

Tom Boylston

Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: tom.boylston@ed.ac.uk
Jules Rawlinson
Interests:
digital arts
sound studies
interactive media
immersive media
game audio
audiovisual

Jules Rawlinson

Data
Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: Jules.Rawlinson@ed.ac.uk
Richard Coyne
Interests:
pervasive digital cultures

Richard Coyne

Digital Design
e: Richard.Coyne@ed.ac.uk
Robin Hill
Interests:
human-computer interaction
decision making and explainability
psychology of communication
responses to audiovisual media
data visualisation
neuropolitics

Robin Hill

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: r.l.hill@ed.ac.uk
Morgan Currie
Interests:
data activism
data infrastructures
political participation
participatory design

Morgan Currie

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
e: morgan.currie@ed.ac.uk
Lachlan Urquhart
Interests:
IT law
human-computer interaction
cyber security
data privacy

Lachlan Urquhart

Data
Digital Design
Social Media
e: lachlan.urquhart@ed.ac.uk

We are interested in how data can be communicated through different kinds of media, how data structures different modes of digital communication, and the effects of data on other socio-economic practices. Our members design different ways to represent data visually, and to encourage ethical participation in the creation of data infrastructure and datasets. We also critique the ways in which algorithms and other kinds of data shape different forms of labour, surveillance, messaging, governance and accountability processes. Finally, our members study how data informs political activism and personal decision-making, as well as the policies of media and other organisations.

Morgan Currie
Interests:
data activism
data infrastructures
political participation
participatory design

Morgan Currie

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
e: morgan.currie@ed.ac.uk
Dave O'Brien
Interests:
socio-economic class
inequality
newsrooms and the creative industries

Dave O'Brien

Data
Journalism
Screen Studies
e: d.obrien@ed.ac.uk
Chris Speed
Interests:
design informatics
blockchain
internet of things
prototypes
workshops
design thinking
digital economy

Chris Speed

Data
Design Informatics and Data Science
Digital Design
e: c.speed@ed.ac.uk
Sarah Liu
Interests:
gender
social movements
women’s political representation
women’s political participation
migration
citizenship
Asian politics
media

Sarah Liu

Data
Journalism
Political Communications
e: sarah.liu@ed.ac.uk
Lachlan Urquhart
Interests:
IT law
human-computer interaction
cyber security
data privacy

Lachlan Urquhart

Data
Digital Design
Social Media
e: lachlan.urquhart@ed.ac.uk
Claudia Pagliari
Interests:
social media
misinformation
health
society
government
policy-making
digital ethics

Claudia Pagliari

Data
Social Media
e: claudia.pagliari@ed.ac.uk
Jules Rawlinson
Interests:
digital arts
sound studies
interactive media
immersive media
game audio
audiovisual

Jules Rawlinson

Data
Digital Design
Screen Studies
e: Jules.Rawlinson@ed.ac.uk
John Lee
Interests:
rich media in learning
graphics in reasoning and learning
computing and cognition in design
multimodal dialogue
informal data

John Lee

Data
Digital Design
Social Media
e: J.Lee@ed.ac.uk
Corentin Curchod
Interests:
algorithms and work
digital economy and government
social media and journalism
digital media
fake news

Corentin Curchod

Data
Journalism
Social Media
e: corentin.curchod@ed.ac.uk
Laura Cram
Interests:
neuropolitics of political communication
cognitive framing in social media
symbols
identities
trust and emotion in political narrative

Laura Cram

Data
Political Communications
Social Media
e: Laura.Cram@ed.ac.uk
Clare Lllewellyn
Interests:
social media
UGC
biographical data
neuropolitics

Clare Llewellyn

Data
Political Communications
Social Media
e: clare.llewellyn@ed.ac.uk
Maria Wolters
Interests:
digital communication in eHealth
accessibility and inclusion
human-computer interaction
intercultural communication

Maria Wolters

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: maria.wolters@ed.ac.uk
Robin Hill
Interests:
human-computer interaction
decision making and explainability
psychology of communication
responses to audiovisual media
data visualisation
neuropolitics

Robin Hill

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: r.l.hill@ed.ac.uk
Ewa Luger
Interests:
human-computer interaction
human-data interaction
intelligible AI
news production
ethics
consent

Ewa Luger

Data
Digital Design
Journalism
e: Ewa.Luger@ed.ac.uk
Benjamin Bach
Interests:
data visualisation
virtual/mixed reality
human-computer interaction
networks

Benjamin Bach

Data
Design Informatics and Data Science
Digital Design
e: bbach@ed.ac.uk

We define political communication broadly: researching the manifold ways in which media shape, and are shaped by, political processes. This includes analysing how social and mainstream media support or undermine effective political participation in Scotland and beyond. It also includes interrogating how media constructs relations between nation states, communities, genders, political parties and other interest groups, especially during armed conflict and post-conflict peace processes. Finally, the persuasive properties of media are a key area of investigation for our researchers, including so-called ‘fake news’, political protests, and other forms of mediated activism, including humanitarian and human rights advocacy.

Morgan Currie
Interests:
data activism
data infrastructures
political participation
participatory design

Morgan Currie

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
e: morgan.currie@ed.ac.uk
Ben Marder
Interests:
digital consumer behaviour
digital identity
user-generated content
impression management
review sites
tourist motivations
social media
travel photography

Ben Marder

Data Analytics
Technologies in Tourism
Visitor Attitudes, Behaviour & Flow
Political Communications
Social Media
e: ben.marder@ed.ac.uk
Jean-Benoit_Falisse
Interests:
social media activism
mediatised conflict
Great Lakes region
primary healthcare
community governance
data extractivism

Jean-Benoit Falisse

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: jb.falisse@ed.ac.uk
Oliver Escobar
Interests:
political communications
participatory dialogic and deliberative aspects of media

Oliver Escobar

Political Communications
e: oliver.escobar@ed.ac.uk
Clare Lllewellyn
Interests:
social media
UGC
biographical data
neuropolitics

Clare Llewellyn

Data
Political Communications
Social Media
e: clare.llewellyn@ed.ac.uk
Julie Cupples
Interests:
media convergence
indigenous media
popular geopolitics
cultural studies
activism
Latin America
Aotearoa New Zealand

Julie Cupples

Political Communications
Social Media
e: Julie.Cupples@ed.ac.uk
Emma Hunter
Interests:
colonial and post-colonial print media
publics
journalism
Africa

Emma Hunter

Journalism
Political Communications
e: Emma.Hunter@ed.ac.uk
Charlotte Gleghorn
Interests:
authorship
Latin American film studies
Indigenous and Afrodescendant media

Charlotte Gleghorn

Political Communications
Screen Studies
e: Charlotte.Gleghorn@ed.ac.uk
Maria Wolters
Interests:
digital communication in eHealth
accessibility and inclusion
human-computer interaction
intercultural communication

Maria Wolters

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: maria.wolters@ed.ac.uk
Sarah Liu
Interests:
gender
social movements
women’s political representation
women’s political participation
migration
citizenship
Asian politics
media

Sarah Liu

Data
Journalism
Political Communications
e: sarah.liu@ed.ac.uk
Laura Cram
Interests:
neuropolitics of political communication
cognitive framing in social media
symbols
identities
trust and emotion in political narrative

Laura Cram

Data
Political Communications
Social Media
e: Laura.Cram@ed.ac.uk
Kate Wright
Interests:
journalism
NGOs
media funding
freelancing
media production practice
humanitarian and human rights campaigning

Kate Wright

Journalism
Political Communications
e: Kate.Wright@ed.ac.uk
Walid Magdy
Interests:
social media
computational social science
natural language processing
data mining

Walid Magdy

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: wmagdy@inf.ed.ac.uk
Ebital Mahadeen
Interests:
Arabic news
representations of gender and sexuality

Ebtihal Mahadeen

Journalism
Political Communications
Social Media
e: Ebtihal.Mahadeen@ed.ac.uk
George K
Interests:
social media
protest
diaspora
digital publics and counterpublics
Zimbabwe

George Karekwaivanane

Political Communications
Social Media
e: G.karekwaivanane@ed.ac.uk
Robin Hill
Interests:
human-computer interaction
decision making and explainability
psychology of communication
responses to audiovisual media
data visualisation
neuropolitics

Robin Hill

Data
Digital Design
Political Communications
Social Media
e: r.l.hill@ed.ac.uk
Tom Molony
Interests:
social media
security
Africa
African politics

Thomas Molony

Political Communications
Social Media
e: Thomas.Molony@ed.ac.uk