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Mirca Madianou

Staff details

PositionReader
Email m.madianou (@gold.ac.uk)
Phone+44 (0)20 7919 7244
Mirca Madianou

I co-convene MA Media and Communications and also co-convene the core MA course 'Introduction to Media and Cultural Theory' and 'Social Media and Everyday Life: A Global Perspective'

I joined the Department of Media and Communications in September 2013. Between 2004-2011 I taught at the University of Cambridge where I was Newton Trust Lecturer in Sociology and Fellow of Lucy Cavendish College. Between 2011-2013 I was Senior Lecturer at the University of Leicester. I have held Research Fellowships at UCL (Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Anthropology, 2002-4) and at the Centre for Research in Arts Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), University of Cambridge (2006). I’m the author/editor of three books as well as several articles and book chapters. My research has been funded by the ESRC, ESF, the Mellon Foundation and CRASSH, Cambridge.

My research examines the social uses and consequences of media environments in a transnational and comparative context. My current and recently completed projects have mainly focused on the relationship between migration and new media. A key area of inquiry is migrants’ uses of media environments (from emails and SMS to skype and facebook) in order to keep in touch with and care for their left-behind families during prolonged periods of separation. My approach is ethnographic and comparative, focusing on the asymmetrical and gendered relationships between countries like the Philippines and the UK from the point of view of the individuals concerned. More broadly, this ethnographic research serves as the basis for more theoretical writings on media, communication and social change which I explore through the concepts of mediation, mediatization and polymedia.

A second strand in my research concerns the mediation of public life which I investigated through ethnographic work with news audiences.  This began with my first book, Mediating the Nation (2005), which is a study of how citizens experience the symbolic boundaries of the nation. More recently, I have been exploring emotional and moral consequences of mediation. I’m the co-editor of the volume Ethics of Media (2013, with Nick Couldry and Amit Pinchevski). More information about my research projects can be found under the tab ‘Research’.

Academic qualifications

PhD, MSc (London School of Economics); BA (University of Athens). 

Teaching

Synopsis for new module launched in 2015/16: SOCIAL MEDIA IN EVERYDAY LIFE: A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE

Many of the current cutting edge developments in social and mobile media take place in what is often referred to as the 'global south'. Innovations such as mobile money (see for example the phenomenally successful platforms M-Pesa and G-Cash) and crowdsourcing platforms (such as Ushahidi) have emerged from countries such as the Philippines and Kenya where over 25 per cent of the country’s GNP flows through M-Pesa. With over 1.39 billion SMS sent daily the Philippines is commonly described as the texting capital of the world. But how can we understand the social consequences of social and mobile media (and the wider media environments they are part of)? Are new communication technologies opportunities for social change, as it is often claimed, or do they simply amplify existing inequalities? 

This module takes an ethnographic, grounded approach to understanding the social uses and social consequences of social media in non-western contexts. Theoretically, the module brings together the interconnected literatures on globalization and social shaping of technology while we will also address contemporary debates on digital media, consumption, social change and power. Empirically, the module will draw on media ethnographies from China, Ghana, Jamaica, Kenya, Malaysia, Nigeria, The Philippines and Trinidad and will address a number of substantive topics such as socialities, intimacy and parenting, migration and social class. The lectures will follow a trajectory from the mediation of personal processes (such as friendship through the Chinese platform Wechat) to the relationship between social media and macro processes such as migration, social class formation and inequality. Ultimately, rather than reporting on a collection of international case studies, the module aims to draw on these non-Western contexts to revisit assumptions about social media as well as about key concepts in social science, such as intimacy and parenting, or social class and power. We will showcase the local appropriations of digital technologies and in turn explore whether these are catalyzing processes of social change or entrenching existing power asymmetries. The tension between cultural particularism and social change is central to the module which will end with a broader theorization of social media.

Areas of supervision

Social uses and consequences of new media; migration and transnational families; media and identities in national and transnational contexts; digital media in the global south and communication for development and social change; social and mobile media in personal relationships; media audiences, especially the audiences for news media; the emotional dimension of mediated communication; mediation/mediatization; media ethics; comparative ethnography.

Radio

Public Engagement - Media coverage (selected)

Thinking Allowed (BBC, Radio 4)

Frankfurter Rundschau

ESRC - Long distance mothering though new media

Selected publications

Books - Authored

Madianou, M. and Miller, D.  (2011) Migration and New Media: transnational families and polymedia, London: Routledge.

Madianou, M. (2005) Mediating the Nation: News, audiences and the politics of identity, London: UCL Press/Routledge. (Translated into Greek)

Books - edited

Couldry, N., Madianou, M. and Pinchevski A. eds.  (2013) Ethics of Media. London: Palgrave

Articles and Book Chapters (selected)

Madianou, M. (accepted - in press) 'Digital Inequality and Second-Order Disasters'. Social Media and Society. 

Madianou, M. (accepted - in press) 'Ambient co-presence: transnational family practices in polymedia environments'. Global Networks. 

Madianou, M. (2015) 'Polymedia and Ethnography: understanding the social in social media'. Social Media and Society

Madianou, M. (2014) 'Smartphones as Polymedia'. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 19(3): 323-348, DOI: 10.1111/jcc4.12069

Madianou, M. (2014) 'Polymedia communication and mediatized migration: an ethnographic approach'. In Lundby, K. (ed). Mediatization of Communication, pp. 323-248, Berlin: De Gruyter. 

Madianou, M. (2013) ‘Humanitarian Campaigns in Social Media: network architectures and polymedia events’, Journalism Studies, vol. 14 (2): 249-266, DOI: 10.1080/1461670X.2012.718558 


Madianou, M. (2013) ‘Ethics of mediation and the voice of the injured subject’. In Couldry, N. Madianou, M. and Pinchevski, A. (eds.) Ethics of Media, London: Palgrave.

Couldry, N., Madianou, M. and Pinchevski, A. (2013) ‘Ethics of Media: an introduction’, in Couldry, N. Madianou, M. and Pinchevski, A. (eds.) Ethics of Media, London: Palgrave. 

Madianou, M. and Miller, D. (2013) ‘Polymedia: towards a new theory of digital media in interpersonal communication’. International Journal of Cultural Studies, 16 (2): 169- 187,DOI:10.1177/1367877912452486

Madianou, M. (2012) ‘Migration and the accentuated ambivalence of motherhood: the role of ICTs in Filipino Transnational Families’. Global Networks, vol. 12 (3) 277-295, doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0374.2012.00352.x, Top Paper Award, Feminist Scholarship, ICA, 2011.

Madianou, M. (2012) ‘News as a looking glass: shame and the symbolic power of mediation’. International Journal of Cultural Studies, vol. 15(1): 3-16, doi: 10.1177/1367877911411795 


Miller, D. and Madianou, M. (2012) ‘Should you accept a friend’s request from your mother? And other Filipino dilemmas’. International Review of Social Research, vol. 2(1): 8-27.

Madianou, M. and Miller, D. (2011) ‘Mobile Phone Parenting? Reconfiguring relationships between migrant Filipina mothers and their left behind children’. New Media and Society, vol. 13(3): 457-470, doi:10.1177/1461444810393903.

Madianou, M. and Miller, D. (2011) ‘Crafting Love: letters and cassette tapes in transnational Filipino family communication’. South East Asian Research, vol. 19(2): 249-272, doi: 

Madianou, M. (2011) ‘Beyond the presumption of identity? Ethnicities, Cultures and Transnational Audiences’. In Nightingale, V. (ed.), Handbook of Media Audiences. Malden, MA: Blackwell, pp. 444-458. 

Madianou, M. (2010) ‘Living with News: Ethnography and news consumption’. In Allan, S. (ed.), The Routledge Companion to News and Journalism Studies. London: Routledge, pp. 428-438.

Madianou, M. (2009) ‘Audience reception and news in everyday life’. In Wahl-Jorgensenn, K. and Hanitzsch, T. (eds.) Handbook of Journalism Studies. New York: Routledge, pp. 325-357.

Madianou, M. (2007) ‘Shifting identities: banal nationalism and cultural intimacy in Greek television news and everyday life’. In Mole, R. (ed.) Discursive constructions of identity in European politics. London: Palgrave, pp. 95-118.

Madianou, M. (2006) ‘ICTs transnational networks and everyday life’. In Bodo, S. (ed.), Quando la cultura fa la differenza. Rome: Meltemi, pp. 189-199.

Madianou, M. (2005) ‘Contested communicative spaces: identities, boundaries and the role of the media’.  Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, vol. 31(3): 521-541.

Madianou, M. (2005) ‘The elusive public of television news’. In Livingstone, S. ed., Audiences and Publics: when cultural engagement matters to the public sphere. Bristol: Intellect Press, pp. 99-114.

Madianou, M. (2005) ‘Desperately seeking the news public’. Journal of Media Practice, vol.6(1): 29-39.

More information about my publications can be found at http://goldsmiths.academia.edu/MircaMadianou  
 
Please contact me by email for copies of publications.

Research Interests

Current Research

The Humanitarian Technologies project:

I'm currently the PI for the ESRC grant 'Humanitarian Technologies: communication environments in disaster recovery and humanitarian intervention'.

This is an 18-month ethnography of the the uses and consequences of communication technologies in the disaster recovery from Typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest storms ever recorded with over 6000 casualties and more than 12 million people affected. The research investigates the uses of digital technologies and innovations such as mobile phones, SMS, crisis mapping and social media both by directly affected populations in the Philippines and other stakeholders (humanitarian organisations and government departments).

The World Disasters Report in 2013 uses the term 'Humanitarian Technologies' to refer to the empowering nature of communication technologies for disaster-affected communities ‘to coordinate and respond to their own problems’ which can potentially correct some of the power asymmetries of humanitarianism. Despite the current optimism surrounding the uses of digital technologies in processes of recovery and rebuilding there is little evidence to assess the impact of digital platforms for humanitarian relief. Our research aims to weigh the optimism surrounding so-called ‘humanitarian technology’ against actual benefits to users. It specifically examines the impact of communication technologies in the following critical areas: information dissemination; collective problem-solving; redistribution of resources; accountability and transparency of humanitarian efforts; and voice and empowerment of affected populations.

This 18-month ethnographic study takes place in two disaster-affected locations in the Visayas region of the Philippines. This is a mixed-method project combining qualitative interviews, participant observation and online ethnography both with affected populations and representatives from humanitarian organisations, government agencies and digital practitioners.

http://www.esrc.ac.uk/my-esrc/grants/ES.M001288.1/read

Networked Migration:

I continue to write on the convergence of migrant networks and networked technologies drawing on comparative research with Filipino migrants in the US and the UK. Themes explored include: citizenship and visibility, fundraising and social capital. The research also explores the cumulative effects of communication technologies on the phenomenon of migration as a whole. 

Polymedia, separation and ambient co-presence:

Drawing on long term (over eight years) ethnographic research with migrants who face prolonged separation from their families, I develop publications on the nature of mediated environments and forms of co-presence in situations of physical absence and mobility. The extreme case of prolonged separation that some migrants face can offer insights into the more ordinary workings of mediation and mediated interpersonal relationships.

Recently completed projects:

Migration and New Media: transnational families and polymedia

I have recently completed an ESRC-funded study on Migration, ICTs and the transformation of transnational family life (2007-2011). This research investigates how parents and children who are separated because of migration care for each other using new media such as mobile phones, email, instant messaging, social networking sites and webcam. This was a three-year ethnographic project, in collaboration with Daniel Miller (UCL), in which we worked with Filipino and Caribbean people living in London and Cambridge as well as their left-behind families in the Philippines and Trinidad. Our book ‘Migration and New Media: transnational families and polymedia’ was published by Routledge in November 2011. For other journal articles from this research please see under ‘Publications’. You can read some reviews of ‘Migration and New Media’ here: http://mcs.sagepub.com/content/35/6/782.extract

http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/lsereviewofbooks/2013/04/10/book-review-migration-and-new-media-transnational-families-and-polymedia/

http://www.degruyter.com/view/j/comm.2013.38.issue-1/commun-2013-0007/commun-2013-0007.xml

Media, Nationalism and Transnational Identities: the boundary-making role of the news media.

My first book, Mediating the Nation (2005) put forward a new approach for the study of media and nationalism focusing on citizens’ experience of the political entity of the nation through television news. Drawing on a two-year ethnography of television viewing in Greece, the book followed the range of public discourses about the nation found in the Greek news and compared them to the everyday discourses and practices about the nation both among Greeks and members of the Turkish minority, a beached diaspora. The book develops an argument about the mediation of symbolic boundaries for inclusion and exclusion from public life.

Emotional and moral consequences of mediation

The above work launched a strand in my research that examines the boundary-making role of media and the nature of mediation. I continue to write on these topics most recently addressing the emotional and ethical implications of digital mediation drawing on examples such as the Leveson inquiry and the viral Kony 2012 campaign. I’m the co-editor of the book Ethics of Media (2013, with N. Couldry and A. Pinchevski).

Publications

Book

Ethics of Media
Couldry, Nick; Madianou, Mirca and Pinchevski, Amit, eds. 2013. Ethics of Media. London: Palgrave. ISBN 9780230347632

Migration and New Media: Transnational Families and Polymedia
Madianou, Mirca and Miller, Daniel. 2011. Migration and New Media: Transnational Families and Polymedia. Abingdon and New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-67928-2

Mediating the Nation: News, audiences and the politics of identity
Madianou, Mirca. 2005. Mediating the Nation: News, audiences and the politics of identity. London: UCL Press / Routledge. ISBN 978-1844720286

Book Section

Polymedia communication and mediatized migration: an ethnographic approach
Madianou, Mirca. 2014. Polymedia communication and mediatized migration: an ethnographic approach. In: Knut Lundby, ed. Mediatization of Communication. Berlin: DE GRUYTER, pp. 323-348.

Ethics of Mediation and the Voice of the Injured Subject
Madianou, Mirca. 2013. Ethics of Mediation and the Voice of the Injured Subject. In: , ed. Ethics of Media. London: Palgrave, pp. 178-197. ISBN 9780230347632

Ethics of Media: an introduction
Madianou, Mirca; Couldry, Nick and Pinchevski, Amit. 2013. Ethics of Media: an introduction. In: Nick Couldry; Mirca Madianou and Amit Pinchevski, eds. Ethics of Media. London: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 1-20. ISBN 978-0230347830

Beyond the presumption of identity? Ethnicities, Cultures and Transnational Audiences
Madianou, Mirca. 2013. Beyond the presumption of identity? Ethnicities, Cultures and Transnational Audiences. In: Virginia Nightingale, ed. The Handbook of Media Audiences. Malden MA: Wiley-Blackwell, pp. 444-458. ISBN 978-1118721391

Living with News: Ethnography and news consumption
Madianou, Mirca. 2013. Living with News: Ethnography and news consumption. In: Stuart Allan, ed. The Routledge Companion to News and Journalism Studies. London: Routledge, pp. 428-438. ISBN 978-0415669535

Audience reception and news in everyday life
Madianou, Mirca. 2008. Audience reception and news in everyday life. In: Karin Wahl-Jorgensenn and Thomas Hanitzsch, eds. The Handbook of Journalism Studies. New York: Routledge, pp. 325-357. ISBN 978-0805863437

Shifting identities: banal nationalism and cultural intimacy in Greek television news and everyday life
Madianou, Mirca. 2007. Shifting identities: banal nationalism and cultural intimacy in Greek television news and everyday life. In: Richard Mole, ed. Discursive Constructions of Identity in European Politics. London: Palgrave Schol, pp. 95-118. ISBN 978-0230517066

ICTs transnational networks and everyday life
Madianou, Mirca. 2006. ICTs transnational networks and everyday life. In: M. R. Cifarelli S Bodo, ed. Quando la cultura fa la differenza. Patrimonio, arti e media nella società multiculturale. Rome: Meltemi, pp. 189-199. ISBN 978-8883534867

The elusive public of television news
Madianou, Mirca. 2005. The elusive public of television news. In: Sonia Livingstone, ed. Audiences and Publics: v.2: Changing Media: Vol 2. Bristol: Intellect, pp. 99-114. ISBN 978-1841501291

Article

Ambient co-presence: transnational family practices in polymedia environments
Madianou, Mirca. 2016. Ambient co-presence: transnational family practices in polymedia environments. Global Networks, 16(2), pp. 183-201. ISSN 1470-2266

Digital Inequality and Second-Order Disasters: Social Media in the Typhoon Haiyan Recovery
Madianou, Mirca. 2015. Digital Inequality and Second-Order Disasters: Social Media in the Typhoon Haiyan Recovery. Social Media + Society, 1(2), pp. 1-11. ISSN 2056-3051

Finding a Voice Through Humanitarian Technologies? Communication Technologies and Participation in Disaster Recovery
Madianou, Mirca; Longboan, Liezel and Ong, Jonathan. 2015. Finding a Voice Through Humanitarian Technologies? Communication Technologies and Participation in Disaster Recovery. International Journal of Communication, 9, pp. 3020-3038.

Polymedia and Ethnography: Understanding the Social in Social Media
Madianou, Mirca. 2015. Polymedia and Ethnography: Understanding the Social in Social Media. Social Media + Society, 1(1), ISSN 2056-3051

Smartphones as Polymedia
Madianou, Mirca. 2014. Smartphones as Polymedia. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 19(3), pp. 667-680. ISSN 1083-6101

Polymedia: Towards a new theory of digital media in interpersonal communication
Madianou, Mirca and Miller, Daniel. 2013. Polymedia: Towards a new theory of digital media in interpersonal communication. International Journal of Cultural Studies, 16(2), pp. 169-187. ISSN 1367-8779

Humanitarian Campaigns in Social Media: Network Architectures and Polymedia Events
Madianou, Mirca. 2013. Humanitarian Campaigns in Social Media: Network Architectures and Polymedia Events. Journalism Studies, 14(2), pp. 249-266. ISSN 1461-670X

Migration and the accentuated ambivalence of motherhood: the role of ICTs in Filipino transnational families
Madianou, Mirca. 2012. Migration and the accentuated ambivalence of motherhood: the role of ICTs in Filipino transnational families. Global Networks, 12(3), pp. 277-295. ISSN 1470-2266

News as a looking glass: shame and the symbolic power of mediation
Madianou, Mirca. 2012. News as a looking glass: shame and the symbolic power of mediation. International Journal of Cultural Studies, 15(1), pp. 3-16. ISSN 1367-8779

Should you accept a friend’s request from your mother? And other Filipino dilemmas
Madianou, Mirca. 2012. Should you accept a friend’s request from your mother? And other Filipino dilemmas. International Review of Social Research, 2(1), pp. 8-27. ISSN 2069-8267

Mobile phone parenting: Reconfiguring relationships between Filipina migrant mothers and their left-behind children
Madianou, Mirca and Miller, Daniel. 2011. Mobile phone parenting: Reconfiguring relationships between Filipina migrant mothers and their left-behind children. New Media & Society, 13(3), pp. 457-470. ISSN 1461-4448

Crafting Love: letters and cassette tapes in transnational Filipino family communication
Madianou, Mirca and Miller, Daniel. 2011. Crafting Love: letters and cassette tapes in transnational Filipino family communication. South East Asian Research, 19(2), pp. 249-272.

Contested communicative spaces: identities, boundaries and the role of the media
Madianou, Mirca. 2005. Contested communicative spaces: identities, boundaries and the role of the media. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 31(3), pp. 521-541. ISSN 1369-183X

Desperately seeking the news public
Madianou, Mirca. 2005. Desperately seeking the news public. Journal of Media Practice, 6(1), pp. 29-39. ISSN 1468-2753

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