Panel : Historicizing Media and Communication Concepts of the Digital Age

Friday 2 July 2021 (1.30 pm – 4.00 pm)

Several of the most known and discussed concepts of the digital age predated the digitalization itselfand have been previously used in the “analogue times”. Other concepts were coined for the digitalsociety but have transformed and are continuously transforming over time. This panel selects some of these concepts, which are directly related to the core topics of ToE (e.g. infrastructures, networks, history of technology and innovation, technology and societal challenges, etc.) and invite the audience to a time travel through their history, heritage and reinvestment in media and communication studies. By shedding light on media and technologies, agency and politics, multi-stakeholders and practices in a longue duréeperspective, this allows to complexify the narratives of the digital age and to investigate the continuities, paths, failures, disruptions as well as tensions in the history of media and technology.

Chaired by Anne-Katrin Weber (Unil, Lausanne, Switzerland), the panel will be introduced by Nelson Ribeiro (Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Lisbon, Portugal) who will present the project at stake (a work in progress and a collective book whose idea was born within the ECREA Communication History Section), its approach and theoretical framework. Six concepts which are of interest for the ToE community, as they strongly rely on some challenges and topics that ToE identified as key, will then be analyzed (in 15 minutes each): Networks by Massimo Rospocher and Gabriele Balbi; Global Governance by Francesca Musiani and Valérie Schafer; Telepresence by Jérome Bourdon; Amateurism by Susan Aasman, Tim van der Heijden and Tom Slootweg; Data(fication) by Erik Koenen and Christian Schwarzenegger; Artificial Intelligence by Simone Natale, Paolo Bory and Dominique Trudel. By connecting these notions with the history of urbanism, infrastructures, geopolitics, telecommunications and media, governance institutions, and many other historical fields or topics, these presentations aim to stimulate a final discussion with the audience on the multiple roots of the digital age and notably its European roots, the tensions as well as media and societal transitions at stake.

This workshop is part of the Tensions of Europe Digital Festival. See programme. Registrations will open mid-may. 

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CfP : Data as a new resource ?

Data as a new resource? Similarities and differences of data vs. material resources

Tensions of Europe Digital Workshop Festival

30 June 2021, Online meeting via WEBEX, 10h-18h CET 

We welcome proposals for participation in the workshop Data as a new resource? Similarities and differences of data vs. material resources, which will take place online via a Webex meeting on June 30th, 2021 between 10h-18h CET.

The workshop is part of the Tensions of Europe Digital Workshop Festival. Tensions of Europe is an international scholarly network and hub for international research, education and outreach initiatives on Technology in European history.

This exploratory workshop is dedicated to scholars interested in technological developments related to digital technologies and resource developments. It aims at bringing together scholars with interests in digital data and material resources development and at creating a broad dialogue on data as a resource. More specifically, we intent to discuss three topics : (1) historical parallels of digital data with the development of other key material resources, (2) data as a commodity and its infrastructure, and (3) sustainability issues and (big) data. 

Call for papers and more information :

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100 Years of Women at the BBC

7 May 2021 1pm – 5.30pm (BST)

Co-sponsored by Critical Studies in Television and Edge Hill University Institute for Social Responsibility

Characterised from early in its life as ‘Auntie’, the BBC itself has been gendered female in the cultural consciousness. But this belies an historically male-dominated institution in which women have often had to fight for their rights to be heard. Recent controversies around equal pay, misogynistic abuse towards BBC personalities and a lack of female representation at the top of the corporation suggest that the institution has far to go in matters of gender equality.

The workshop will present fresh and innovative work-in-progress research on women at the BBC. Our presentations will explore the careers of some pioneering female workers at the BBC. The workshop aims to shed fresh light on influential figures such as Grace Wyndham Goldie and Jill Craigie; to draw attention to careers that are often overlooked – such as gramophone operators or production designers; to re-examine forgotten on-screen personalities; and to consider women’s contributions to prestigious BBC strands such as Play for Today.  We will also think about the tools we use to explore women’s television history, with a panel that focuses on the pros and cons of using interviews as a research method for historical studies.

Registration for the event is free. Please visit the event website

ISR Public Event: 7th May 2021 – Institute for Social Responsibility