CNM welcomes Assoc Prof Gu Jie

Gu jie

CNM welcomes Assoc Prof Gu Jie, from the School of Television, Faculty of Journalism and Communication, Communication University of China. He received his PhD in New Media Studies from the Australian National University in 2012. His research interests include media practice, audience studies and political communication and his teaching areas are Digital Journalism, Television Production & Photography. Gu Jie will be with us until end July 2016.

He will be giving a talk on Wednesday, 27 Mar 2016, 3 pm at the CNM Meeting Room. The synopsis of his talk is given below.

Talk Synopsis:

For the past decade, a practice turn has been witnessed in quite a few research disciplines, such as sociological consumption studies, organization studies and science and technology studies. In 2004, Nick Couldry first brought practice theories to media studies and formally argued that media should be also theorized as practice. However, practice theories have appeared in relatively few studies of media and communication. Moreover, I suggest that most existing practice-based media studies are still conducted under the purview of methodological dualism without manifesting the essence of duality of practice theories. To explicate this suggestion, I first review the development and rationale of practice theories. Especially, the focus is laid on the second generation of practice theories, which is pioneered by Theodore Schatzki. Compared to the first generation of practice theorists, like Bourdieu and Giddens, Schatzki’s ensemble practice approach offers a better solution for bridging the gap between methodological individualism and wholism. More importantly, this approach entails a set of concepts and parameters which operate at a relatively low level of abstraction. Second, by referring to the merits of existing practice-based studies, and also incorporating the insights generated from my own study of YouTubing practice in the context of Australia, I extend existing practice-based studies by detailing a research script of with more emphasis on individual side of social practices. In the final section, I further develop my contention that the field of media and communication is a fruitful one for the development of practice theories, and that practice theories are useful for media scholars, especially with research interests in motivation, usage pattern and media institution.



CARE campaign to highlight challenges faced by the poor in Singapore

No12993593_1710946682516738_1548376197116818553_n Singaporeans Left Behind is the latest campaign to be launched by CNM-CARE and seeks to highlight the daily challenges faced by low-income families in Singapore. Prof Mohan J. Dutta (CNM Head and CARE Director), along with Naomi Tan and Dr Asha Rathina Pandi have launched this online campaign to raise awareness of Singaporeans living in poverty. Through their research and in-depth interviews with low-income families, the team was able to identify several issues including key areas such as; access to housing, access to and affordability of healthcare, receiving financial assistance, food insecurity and stigmatization. Their initial findings have been published in the white paper, Singaporeans: A Culture-Centered Study of the Poverty Experience in Singapore

The team worked together with some of the participants to create a communication campaign, highlighting the issues. After several rounds of discussion, they collaboratively designed a print advertisement, a video advertisement, a documentary film and a social media campaign. For more updates and details follow their Facebook page



CNM Seminar Talk – From programming from within a video game to programming within a web page

ToonTalk is a programming environment where programs are created and run inside of a game-like virtual world. Children, including pre-school children, have programmed computers by training robots, giving birds messages to deliver, filling boxes, loading up trucks, and using magic wands. These demonstrations are understood by ToonTalk as the construction of computer programs. Programs are executed visually in the ToonTalk town. Surprisingly very sophisticated programs can be constructed this way.

The desktop version of ToonTalk was launched in the late 1990s and development ceased about ten years later. Two years ago the speaker began to re-conceptualize ToonTalk for the web. In the process much was gained and much was lost.The presentation will include live demonstrations of both versions of ToonTalk.

About the Speaker

Ken KahnKen Kahn, University of Oxford –  After receiving his doctorate from the MIT AI Lab Ken did AI and programming language research for over ten years before switching his focus to programming languages for children.He is the designer and developer of ToonTalk a programming system for children that provides concrete analogs of advanced computational abstractions with a video game look and feel. Recently he has begun to create ToonTalk Reborn an open-source web-based rethinking of ToonTalk.

Venue: CNM Meeting Room

Date & Time: 15 Apr 2016, 2pm