NUS’ UNITE Magazine Covers Kalina Silverman’s Talk On Big Talk

Nur Amira joined Kalina Silverman in her Big Talk seminar and was blown away by the idea of steering conversations beyond mere pleasantries:

Picture this: You’re walking to the lift. You look up and make eye contact with one of your schoolmates—the two of you aren’ close, you don’t really talk, but you worked on that one project together a couple of semesters back. She’s waiting for the lift too, it seems. You smile at each other, albeit awkwardly. Glancing at the electronic bar sitting at the top of the lift doors, you realise that the damned lift is still stuck at the floor below.

Crap. You clear your throat and plaster a bright smile on your face.

“How’s school?” the both of you blurt out at the same time.


Source: UNITE Magazine

Watch this space for upcoming executive education courses delivered by Kalina Silverman!

Call For Papers: Theorizing Communication from the South

Call for Papers: Communication Theory Special Issue

Theorizing Communication from the South

Guest Editors:
Mohan J. Dutta, National University of Singapore
Mahuya Pal, University of South Florida

In this special issue, we take forward emerging calls for decolonizing communication to explore communication theories anchored in the cartographies of the Global South. We encourage submissions that question assumptions regarding internationalization, de-Westernization, and globalization, along with other key concepts, and that consider new directions for approaches to theorizing communication. Submissions should engage with questions concerning the production of knowledge, the role of communication in global relations, and the potential for communication to contribute to advancing imaginaries of the Global South.

The special issue will offer opportunities for theory construction that challenge the Eurocentric bases of communication theories, taking seriously scholars from and in the Global South. In doing so, we hope to foster new grounds for debate, conversation, and practice relevant to communication scholarship. While our emphasis is precisely on theorizing communicative imaginations from the South, scholars situated in the Global North engaged with the practical politics of centering theories from the Global South are also welcome.

The deadline for submission of full papers is 1 December 2017.

For submission guidelines, see To submit, go to For queries regarding the Special Issue’s theme, please contact Mohan Dutta ( and Mahuya Pal (

CNM Research Talk: Deep Learning, An Overview And An Application To Sound Design- Presented by Lonce Wyse

Advances in deep learning AI systems are changing human-computer interaction in many different aspects of our lives.

In this illuminating talk, Associate Professor Lonce Wyse will introduce deep learning, reflect on its impact on new media research and practices, and delve into recent research on deep learning and style-transfer in sound design.

22 September 2017
4:15 PM – 5:15 PM

Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
National University of Singapore
Blk AS6, #03-33
CNM Meeting Room

Register at:

Opinion Editorial: Stand up against attacks on India’s pluralism

The most recent murder of one of India’s prominent journalists, Ms Gauri Lankesh – shot at close range in the chest and head by motorbike-riding gunmen in front of her home in Bangalore on Tuesday – is symptomatic of a larger climate of politically-motivated attacks on journalists asking difficult questions and critical of the far-right Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) Hindutva agenda of targeting minorities that risk turning India into a republic of hate.


Source: The Straits Times


Enabling Students for the Future Workforce through CNM’s Compulsory Internship Programme

The Department of Communications and New Media (CNM) is delighted to present its inaugural Compulsory Internship Programme (CIP). Students who pursue a major in NM under the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, National University of Singapore, are automatically placed into the programme. The objectives of the programme are to:

  • give students industrial experience through the well-structured internship programme, and
  • enable students to apply academic theories taught in class to real-world situations

Beyond the Classroom

Most students, after they graduate, will enter the workforce for the very first time. It can be an overwhelming experience. CNM established CIP to help ease the transition from being a full-time student to a fresh hire. The CIP offers students an unprecedented opportunity to gain practical experience beyond the classroom through an active-learning and active-doing role, which can be acquired through meaningful internships.

Getting Yourself the Exposure You Need

CNM believes that internships are important interim programmes within a student’s candidature, which enables them to garner relevant knowledge, important skill-sets, as well as acquire experience through day-to-day practice on the job. Furthermore, internships expose students to a myriad of meaningful connections with individuals and corporations in the field so that students stay current.

Although CNM boasts a very strong academic portfolio which empowers students with appropriate skill-sets, modules are only a stepping stone toward giving students a solid foundation in the theory and practice of communication principles. Learning how to manage projects requires an understanding of traditional and new media communication as well as how communication functions in order to integrate them. Thus, it is only appropriate for students who are promoted to course code ARS3 to pursue internship. Students can have the option to go on CIP either in Semester 1 or Semester 2 of their third academic year.

Internship Woes

Internships can be overwhelming, and it’s only natural to ask questions like Am I going to be paid for my internship stint?; Will I be in-charge of only providing coffee for the breakfast meeting? At CNM, we try our best to minimise certain work-related issues like students not being paid for their work or forced to perform menial tasks that are not related to communication. Through the CIP’s structured programme, we seek to not only foster lasting and trusting relations with industry partners, but also build future-ready students.

Figuring Out the Next Steps

Internships are beneficial because they make students more competitive in an increasingly demanding job market. They also give students crucial insight into particular career fields they are interested in, and gain valuable experience that prepares them for their future careers.

The Importance of Internships

Internships not only unlock the uncertainties one might face in the future, they serve as a powerful demonstration of future capabilities. It is not inconceivable for high-performing interns to create such a strong and positive impression on the employer that the students receive a stellar reference letter, or better yet, secure a job immediately upon graduation.

Have you gone on your internship yet? We’d love to hear from you your own experience as an intern. Leave your comments here!

Student Videographer: The Story of Naufal Afandi

At the age of three, Naufal was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa, a condition that causes him to experience a gradual decline in his vision over time. After struggling with bullying and identity issues in his childhood, Naufal finds strength and confidence in life through power-lifting, bowling, and tremendous support from his loved ones. He hopes to encourage people who are going through similar challenges that things will always get better no matter how difficult it seems, and that there is always something to be thankful for in life.

Communicative Challenges in Traditional Chinese Medicine

In the WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy 2014-2023 report, the World Health Organization discusses the burgeoning yet underestimated popularity of traditional medicine. Recognising that the dominance of western medicine has created unequal structures which reinforce the legitimacy of different healing systems, the report emphasises the importance of understanding the needs and uses of traditional medicines in healthcare systems.

CNM’s Professor Mohan Dutta, PhD candidate Pauline Luk, researchers Lily Lee and Desiree Soh tackle this urgency by establishing a groundbreaking study to examine how decisions made by patients and practitioners help promote Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) as a viable means of healing. 25 TCM practitioners (the quintessential sinseh) and 51 TCM patients were interviewed between 2015 and 2016, where they described their practices of applying TCM, common meanings, daily habits of using TCM, concerns in communicating their choices in using TCM, the challenges they experience, and their day-to-day negotiations of these challenges.

The results are instructive. They reveal that both culture and structure can either complement or challenge the use of traditional medicine in Singapore’s multi-ethnic society. Patients, TCM practitioners, doctors trained in western medicine and the general public participate in the negotiation of TCM, constituted amid cultural constructions of TCM, and are guided by the overarching structure of healthcare in Singapore. Significantly, communication continues to play a critical role in shaping interpretations and understanding the key concepts and uses of TCM.

In a broader climate that privileges bio-medicine, the study demonstrates the advantage of underpinning policy decisions on TCM to conversations that are already taking place on the ground. This would help encourage collaboration between doctors trained in Western medicine and TCM practitioners, thus improving patient access to care in a distinctly local context of multiple healing traditions.

Do you use TCM in your life? Why not extend your thoughts here? If you need more information on this important research, reach out to us.

Information Mobility: A New Frontier in Communication and New Media Research

In this talk, Professor Ran Wei will cover his recent attempts to integrate communication research (media effects) with digital mobile media studies. He developed a research framework that incorporates technological affordances of mobile media and active user perspective (U&G theory) in understanding how private chat (talk, texting and posts, and reposts) on mobile social media transforms into space for public communication (a networked mobile sphere). Information mobility (Basole, 2004), which refers to private UGC that goes viral on a mobile networked space, is illustrated as a construct that bridges communication research (legacy) and new media studies (digital).

Date: 11 SEPT 2017
Time: 4.30 P.M


Prof Ran Wei,
College of Information and Communications
University of South Carolina