CALL FOR PAPERS: ICAfrica 2nd Biennial, 2018

The Africa Regional Conference of the International Communication Association (ICA)

 

Theme: African Digital Cultures: Emerging Research, Practices and Innovations

Date:7-9 November, 2018

Organisers: School of Information and Communication Studies, University of Ghana, Legon

Digital technology has become an inherent part of contemporary African life. Fueled by increasing internet penetration, changes have occurred to accommodate a more digital-driven lifestyle across various sectors of African societies. Compared with other parts of the world,Internet use in Africa is still relatively low, but digital technology is rapidly changing how people on the continent communicate with one another, produce and consume goods and services, enact citizenship, and construct narratives about themselves. New configurations in the communication, information and media landscape resulting from digitalization provoke new questions and challenge old assumptions about mediation practices for scholars. Traditional media such as radio, for example, may be still dominant in the information and communication ecology of Africa, but their practices are constantly being impacted and transformed by emerging digital cultures, especially amongst the youth.

The dynamic nature of technology-driven transformations in mediated communication in Africa calls for deeper insights into the cultures forming around the appropriation of digital technologies. In a world in which the face of communication is constantly evolving, we believe

Africa can provide fresh thinking on how people adopt, appropriate and deploy digital technologies in various communicative contexts and the impact(s) that has on their lives.

The School of Information and Communication Studies (SICS) of the University of Ghana, in collaboration with the International Communication Association (ICA) is hosting the 2018 Regional ICA conference on the theme African Digital Cultures: Emerging research, practices and innovations. The conference seeks to bring together scholars from within and outside the continent to share their research and perspectives on the cultures forming around conceptualizations, production and consumption of the digital space in Africa. We invite abstracts of empirical and conceptual papers that address the following and other relevant themes for presentation at the conference:

  • Transformation of knowledge in a digital era
  • Epistemologies, disciplinary developments and pedagogies in digital communication
  • Theorizations of the digital
  • Gendered cultures and digitization
  • Youth cultures and digitization
  • Rural digital cultures
  • Digitization and marginalization
  • Digitization, regulation and governance
  • Digital colonization
  • Ethical concerns related to digitization
  • Newsroom norms and practices in a digital era
  • Corporate communications and digitization
  • Communication, entrepreneurship and digitization
  • Digitization and interpersonal communication
  • Audiences and digital culture
  • Privacy, publicity, surveillance
  • News and disinformation
  • New mediation practices in a digital era
  • Digitalization and visualization

Special Panels: We also invite abstracts for a Special Panel on Revisiting the Foundations of African Communication Scholarship in honour of pioneering African communication scholars.

Besides this, we welcome senior scholars to propose and constitute special panels on issues of interest related to the conference theme.

Submission for Conference: Please submit abstracts of a maximum 300 words by June 30, 2018either through the designated link on the conference website or tosics@ug.edu.gh

 

Abstract acceptance notifications would be issued by July 25, 2018and full papers will be expected to be submitted by October 15, 2018. Abstracts should include name, institutional affiliation and contact details of author(s) and paper title.

Policy Lab: The Conference will create space for a Policy Labon Digital Empowerment (Access, Literacy, Safety, etc.). The main objective of the policy lab is to improve the synergies amongst researchers, media and communication practitioners, and policy actors. It aims at encouraging research agendas of direct interest to policy constituencies on issues related to the topic of the policy lab and to stimulate demand for research findings amongst potential users in policy and practice. Participation will be open to only a limited number of participants.

Submission for Policy Lab: Please submit a short synopsis of relevant research you are currently developing and which could benefit from feedback from policy makers byJune 30, 2018either through the designated link on the conference website or to sics@ug.edu.gh. Acceptance notifications would be issued by July 25, 2018.

Graduate Student/Early Scholar Mentoring Session: There will also be a graduate student mentoring session. We invite graduate students to send in abstracts of their research as well as poster proposals for consideration byJune 30, 2018either through the designated link on the conference website or to sics@ug.edu.gh.

Acceptance notifications would be issued by July 25, 2018. A limited number of partial/full sponsorship may be available for covering flights and hotel accommodation. 

Key dates

  • Abstract submission deadline: June 30, 2018
  • Acceptance notification and invitations: July 25, 2018
  • Full paper submissions: October 15, 2018
  • Conference dates: November 7-9, 2018

NB: Please include the session you are submitting your abstract to in the subject line when using the email option

Venue: University of Ghana, Legon, Accra-Ghana

Kindly visit the link below for further information

http://sics.ug.edu.gh/icaafrica-ghana

Submit your Abstract here: http://sics.ug.edu.gh/icaafrica-ghana/abstract-submission

Prof. Audrey Gadzekpo

Dean, School of Information and Communication Studies

University of Ghana

 

CALL FOR PAPERS: Mundu: A journal of Emerging African Communication

Open Call for Papers – Marginality

Overview:

The women, and ultimately movement, that exposed top Hollywood producer, Harvey Weinstein, was named 2017 Time Magazine person of the year. This recognition is by no means a barometer of the progress that has been made in terms of gender equality. It is only an indication of “the evolution of human rights from a patriarchal, male centred world, in which women’s rights were not a consideration to now when women’s rights are integral to the world we live in” (Madeley, 2017).

In such instances of continued struggles for equality, the fight against marginality or conditions where individuals and cultures occupy a peripheral status to a “center”, has brought to the fore the problematic nature of social relations (Nabizadeh, 2016).

Media observers have noted that although most politicians and prominent figures often face the glare of news media, matters are slightly different for women. Feminist scholars write that the media scrutiny trained on women seeking higher positions, be it political or any other sphere, can be “contemptuous” (Ntuli, 2017). This is despite women constituting a powerful force in politics and all levels of government and society. A fact that has not changed much over the years, as evidenced by the United States 2016, and the 2017 ANC presidential campaigns; both criticized for bias against women candidates (Beaudoux, 2017; Ntuli, 2017).

Similarly, the 2015 and 2016 student strikes demanding to extrication of colonial legacies and fee free education in public institutions of higher learning, illustrated the continued marginalisation of previously disadvantaged groups.  The call for a decolonised academy and the plea to overhaul current social practice that perpetuate exclusionary colonial systems gained widespread support (Catherine Addora Hoppers 2012). Observers pointed out that the turbulence and disruption caused by the demand for redress, indicated the broader social need to democratize previously exclusive centers of power.

In light of the big strides that have been made by social groups fighting for equality, and the many other issues that are still to be addressed.

The Emerging Scholars and Media Studies Interest Group would like to invite interested parties to submit a paper for publication in the inaugural issue of Mundu: A journal of Emerging African Communication. The papers selected for publication will also be presented in a panel discussion at the 2018 SACOMM Conference in Johannesburg.

Selected themes:

  • Marginality, decolonisation, redress and media studies
  • Teaching, learning, research and engagement in decolonial contexts
  • What does a decolonised media studies pedagogy look like?
  • The role of alternative and critical media system
  • The relationship between marginality and the political economy of media
  • Social construct of marginal roles
  • Tensions between the media, marginality and privilege
  • Representation of marginality in the media (television, radio, print, online)

 

Submission Guidelines

Please send a one-page abstract to pononom@ufs.ac.za by March 30, 2018.

Notification of abstract selection will be sent by April 9. Selected authors will be required to convert the abstract into a journal article for publication by June 1.

Please note that submitted papers will go through a peer review process, and if successful, will be published in the inaugural issue of the Emerging Scholar journal, which is to be launched at the 2018 SACOMM Conference.