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



CNM Research Talk: Making BIG Talk- Presented by Kalina Silverman

Three years ago, Kalina Silverman wanted to see what could happen if she approached strangers and skipped the small talk to have more meaningful conversations with them instead. She made a Youtube documentary, where it went viral. As a result, she started delivering workshops, and even a TEDx talk on the subject. It now has > 3,000,000 views on YouTube, and has garnered feedback from people around the world who have shared their stories of making BIG TALK. The feedback she received from Singapore in particular, inspired her to come here to pursue research around how Big Talk can be used to bridge communication gaps across different kinds of relationships.

8 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:

CNM Research Talk: Hollywood Made In China- Presented by Aynne Kokas

China is about to become the largest theatrical box office in the world, yet only allows a limited number of foreign films to be imported each year. To overcome China’s film import quota and thereby gain access to the Chinese market, Hollywood studios have begun to engage in a range of collaborative ventures. In Feb 2016, Shanghai-based US-China joint venture Oriental DreamWorks released Kung Fu Panda 3, which went on to dominate the box office worldwide. Disney opened its first theme park in Chinaa USD 5.5 billion investment– a mere four months later. Cash-rich Chinese conglomerates like the Dalian Wanda Group have begun securing major stakes in foreign studios, spurring US government efforts to regulate foreign direct investment in Hollywood. Prof Aynne Kokas will deliver a talk that demonstrates how the growth of China’s media market is transforming Hollywood from the inside out.

23 August 2017
4:15 PM – 5:15 PM

Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
National University of Singapore
Blk AS6, #03-41
CNM Meeting Room

Raka Shome Receives Prestigious Charles Woolbert Award

We’re really proud to announce that CNM’s Dr Raka Shome has been selected as the 2017 recipient of the National Communication Association’s (NCA) prestigious Charles Woolbert Award for her work in postcolonial studies and its impact on the field. Of particular note is the essay, Postcolonial Approaches to Communication: Charting the Terrain, Engaging the Intersections, which Raka co-authored with Radha Hegde.

The NCA states:

…the award recognizes a journal article or book chapter whose influence has grown with time, has become a stimulus for new conceptualizations of communication phenomena, and is reflective of the diversity of the discipline and its scholarly pursuits. Thus, the award will be reserved for an article or book chapter that at the time of the award is in its 10th through 15th year in print (i.e., published in 2002–2007 for consideration in 2017) and has not previously received an NCA-sponsored award (though previous winners of interest group-level awards are eligible). The recipient will be recognized at the awards ceremony during the NCA Annual Convention and will receive a plaque supported by Life Member Fund. A panel about the recipient’s scholarship will also take place at the NCA Annual Convention in the following year.


Dr Raka Shome joins an honour roll of other distinguished award winners like Linda Putnam, Rod Hart, Dennis Mumby, Carole Blair and Ed Schiappa.