Young Scholars

34 young scholars from seven countries presented their projects at the preconference, giving a broad overview on the field of visual methods and their concrete applications.


Camera ObjectiveGeorge Anghelcev (Penn State University, USA)
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George Anghelcev has taught and lectured at universities in China, France, Hungary, Romania and the US. His research examines the psychology of persuasion in multiple social advertising domains, including campaigns about public health, volunteering, environmental protection and charitable donations. Anghelcev’s research has been published in International Journal of AdvertisingJournalism and Mass Communication QuarterlyPsychology & MarketingJournal of Marketing CommunicationsJournal of Social Marketing and other journals. He has received three Top Research Paper Awards from the Advertising Division of AEJMC (Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication) and an outstanding journal article award from the Journal of Social Marketing. He sits on the editorial boards of International Journal of Advertising and Journal of Social Marketing, and is Research Chair of the Advertising Division of AEJMC. His current research focuses on organic food marketing and analyzing patterns in the dissemination of sustainability-related talk on social media platforms.


Ozen Bas (Indiana University, USA)Ozen Bas
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Ozen Bas is a PhD Candidate in the Media School at Indiana University. Her research interests focus on political communication, the role of media in democratic processes, and potential of social media for political engagement.


Eva BollerEva Boller (University of Hamburg, Germany)
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Eva Boller is a journalist and PhD student at the University of Hamburg. She studied Journalism & Communication, English literature, Film studies and Psychology at Hamburg University and the Trinity College in Dublin. Her master thesis dealt with the Framing of TV-foreign reporting. During her studies she worked for the Hans Bredow Institute for media research. After her studies she was trained at the Broadcasting Channel NDR to be a TV journalist. There she was working for the show Kulturjournal and the news channel Eins Extra. In 2012 she received a scholarship from the Hans Böckler Stiftung to write a PHD thesis about the War in Libya in European TV news. In addition she was working as editor for the international journal Message.


Carie CunninghamCarie Cunningham (Michigan State University, USA)
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Carie Cunningham attended Northern Illinois University and graduated with a B.S. in Journalism and Meteorology. After graduation, she was hired as a television news producer for the NBC affiliate in Reno, Nevada and Detroit, Michigan. She started her career as a Spartan in the fall of 2012 in the Department of Communications. Her focus was on mass communication and how journalists communicate with the public. She found that the communication literature had a number of topics and theories that could easily be transitioned to make more effective communication between journalists and the public. Carie finished her Masters and was accepted into the Media and Information Studies Ph.D. program at Michigan State University. Her home department is Journalism. However, in her quest for better ways to maintain television viewers’ attention, Carie is pursuing an interdisciplinary program of cognitive science as a secondary and complimentary focus to Journalism.


Tony DengTony Deng (Michigan State University, USA)

Tony’s research interests broadly include cross-cultural advertising effects and consumer behavior. He studies the interplay of culture and advertising, specifically how culture impacts advertising strategies, and the potential positive and negative effects of advertising on society. Tony holds an M.A. in Communication from Marquette University, an MSocSc in Media Management from Hong Kong Baptist University. He has worked as an editor in China Daily and subsequently a practitioner in advertising agencies in South China and Hong Kong.


Ran DuanRan Duan (Michigan State University, USA)
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Ran Duan is a Ph.D. student in the School of Journalism at Michigan State University. She is also a specialization student in Environmental Science and Policy Program (ESPP) at MSU. Her research interests are media coverage of environmental, science and risk issues. She has a particular interest in the coverage of China’s environmental issues in Chinese and US media.


Brian EkdaleBrian Ekdale (University of Iowa, USA)
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Brian Ekdale is an Assistant Professor in the School of Journalism & Mass Communication at The University of Iowa. His research interests are digital media, globalization, and media production. His dissertation was an ethnographic study of community media organizations in Nairobi’s slums. His other work has looked at political and cultural engagement on social media in the U.S. and Africa, the changes in contemporary American journalism, and global-local tensions in Kenya’s music video industry. He has published articles in a variety of journals, including New Media & SocietyCritical Studies in Media CommunicationEcquid Novi: African Journalism Studies, and Information, Communication & Society. His teaching and research are informed by a professional background in information technology and documentary video.


Julie EscurignanJulie Escurignan (University of Texas, Austin (TX), USA)
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After getting a BA and a Research Masters in Information and Communication from the Sorbonne University (Paris, France), Julie started her PhD in Communication Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She undergoes studies in Rhetoric and Media within the larger track of Communication. Julie researches questions of Adaptation, Modernization and Transmission in Television Series from a Historical and Cultural perspective. She has been studying the modernization of History and Style in the shows The Tudors and Reign as well as the adaptation of fairy tales in the series Grimm. Currently, Julie is pursuing several projects involving television series, such as a study of the CW phenomenon Jane the Virgin or an analysis of the role of women in State of Affairs. As an international young scholar, she wishes to continue working, researching and collaborating at the International level with peers sharing the same research interests.


Jessica FrancisJessica Francis (Michigan State University, USA)
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Jessica Francis is a PhD student and teaching assistant in the Media and Information Studies at Michigan State University. Her focus is on persuasion and health communication. Her current research deals with the role of media channels on promoting health behavior. She holds a master’s in Communication and Media Technology from Rochester Institute of Technology.


Michael GrimmMichael Grimm (Hans-Bredow-Institut for Media Research at the University of Hamburg, Germany)
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Michael Grimm is a junior researcher at the Hans-Bredow-Institut for Media Research at the University of Hamburg (Germany) and student representative of the ICA Visual Communication Studies Division. He studied media and communication sciences at the Universities of Hamburg and Erfurt (Germany) as well as at Vancouver Island University (Nanaimo, B.C., Canada). He currently works in a project within an interdisciplinary research network on complementary and alternative medicine in oncology, which is funded by the German Cancer Aid Society and aims at providing quality-secured information on and improving communication about complementary and alternative medicine for patients and medical experts. In his dissertation, he focuses on the concept of multimodal framing in health communication and analyzes the audiovisual representation of medical uncertainty and its reception. His primary research interests include visual communication, health communication, media use and reception in the context of media convergence and empirical methods of communication science.


Stefan JarolimekStefan Jarolimek (Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany)
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Stefan Jarolimek holds a doctorate in communication and media science from the University of Leipzig. Since October 2014, he holds a deputy professorship in corporate communication at the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. He regularly teaches courses on organisational communication/PR, theories of PR, innovative methods and media ethics. His research interests include international and intercultural communication, CSR and sustainability communication, PR theory, media systems (in Eastern Europe) and methods.


Pablo B. JostPablo B. Jost (Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany)
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Pablo B. Jost is a research assistant at the Department of Communication at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. He studied communication science and politics at the Friedrich-Schiller-University in Jena. Pablo’s main research focus is on political communication and journalism, especially in the context of digital media change.


Kathrin KarsayKathrin Karsay (University of Vienna, Austria)
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Kathrin Karsay has been a Junior Researcher (Pre-Doc) and Ph.D. Candidate at the Department of Communication, University of Vienna since 2013. As a member of the Vienna Advertising and Media Effects Research Group her research focuses on media effects in general and the theoretical and empirical assessment of visual sexualization. The working title of her Ph.D thesis is: Sexualized media, sexualized tweens. Sexually objectifying depictions in youth media and effects of self-objectification in early adolescence.


Allison KwesellAllison Kwesell (International Christian University Tokyo, Japan)
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Allison Kwesell is a PhD candidate in Visual Media Studies at the International Christian University (Tokyo). She completed a Masters in Public Policy and Social Research as Rotary World Peace Fellow and got her Bachelor degree in Photojournalism at the University of Montana (USA). Her work experience in photojournalism include the Rotarian Magazine, World Bank, Azerbaijan, University of Maryland, UC, United Nations: UNDPI, Photohoku, Asahi Shimbun/Weekly, Chattanooga Times Free Press, Associated Press, Children’s Nutrition Program of Haiti, Kathmandu Post, Kantipur Daily and Rustic Pathways. Her exhibitions and presentations mainly deal with (the social life after the disaster in) Shinchimachi Fukushima.


Jessica N. LarsenJessica N. Larsen (University of Illinois, Chicago (IL), USA)
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Jessica N. Larsen is a young qualitative scholar who is currently preparing her dissertation research, an ethnographic study of digital food culture investigating the translation of offline dining culture to online food culture, a study which methodologically connects participant observation with image analysis, textual analysis, and interviews.  Her research interests include visual methods, the role of reflexivity in qualitative methods, food culture, and the cultures of everyday life.  Additionally, she has nine years of industry-level experience in the qualitative assessment of the user experience and design of interaction in online space.


Maria LunaMaria Luna (Institut de la Comunicació, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain)

Maria Luna is a researcher and documentary filmmaker with a PhD in Communication contents in the Digital Age from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. Her recently concluded PhD dissertation proposes a method to work on documentary film cartographies from an approach based on media ethnographies. She is currently doing research on the relationship between cartographic methods and digital humanities. She is also a practitioner of media distribution as co-founder of the association of Latin American Cinema, organizer of the Colombian Film Panorama in Barcelona, Paris and London and she worked as television producer and director. Her recent publications are focused on documentary and transnationalisation of cinema in the Journal Archivos de la Filmoteca, Journal of War and Culture and edited book chapters. She is currently a researcher at the In-Com (Institut de la Comunicació, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona), member of the academic board of the XVII. International Documentary Film Festival (Midbo) and co-founder of Hermes Research Group at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.


Crystal Miller-EusticeCrystal Miller-Eustice (Michigan State University, USA)
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Crystal Miller-Eustice is pursuing her doctoral degree at Michigan State University in the Department of Community Sustainability with a specialization in Ecological Food and Farming Systems. She is a C.S. Mott Pre-doctoral fellow in Sustainable Agriculture. She earned her M.S. from the Department of Community, Agriculture, Recreation and Resource Studies from MSU in 2013. Her doctoral research explores consumer behavior, specifically of wine tasting room visitors/tourists, and how they respond to marketing information. Crystal’s research is tied to the Northern Grapes Research Project funded by the USDA NIFA Specialty Crop Research Initiative, which aims to help cold hardy wine producers overcome industry challenges and become more sustainable. Additional interests and projects include applied research in local and regional food systems. Crystal has worked with the Center for Regional food Systems on local food projects and publications.


Minh Hao NguyenMinh Hao Nguyen (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
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Minh Hao Nguyen is a PhD candidate at the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR), University of Amsterdam. Before becoming a PhD candidate, she did her Bachelor in Media and Communication at the Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands, and completed her Research Master in Communication Science at the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Her PhD research project focuses on how to effectively tailor website information to older colorectal cancer patients’ mode preferences (i.e., via text, illustrations, audiovisual). Ultimately, the aim is to establish theory- and evidence-based guidance for optimal information provision to older colorectal cancer patients. The research project is supervised by Dr. Julia van Weert, Nadine Bol MSc, Prof. Dr. Ellen Smets and Prof. Dr. Eugène Loos. The research project is funded by the Dutch Cancer Society.


Tom PowellTom Powell (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
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Tom Powell (MSc) is a PhD candidate at the Amsterdam School of Communications Research (ASCoR) at the University of Amsterdam. He works on the project “Visual framing effects: The effects of image-text relations in international affairs”. The project aims to systematically study the effects of visuals in political communication. He uses an experimental approach to examine how images alone, and images in combination with text – both in static and audio-visual media – frame consumers’ perceptions of international affairs. Tom studied Psychology at Durham University and completed a Masters in Neuroimaging at Bangor University (both in the UK), funded by a Medical Research Council scholarship. More recently, he has researched visual perception at the University of Cambridge and social sciences at the UK Ministry of Defence, where he won a Chief Scientific Advisor’s commendation for exceptional performance in Defence science and technology.


Sandra RistovskaSandra Ristovska (University of Pennsylvania, USA)

Sandra Ristovska is a filmmaker and a PhD Candidate in communication at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania. Her research explores the role of video in achieving social change with a particular focus on human rights video advocacy. Sandra is a recipient of the Top Paper Award from the Philosophy, Theory and Critique Division at the International Communication Association (ICA) and the Herbert Schiller Prize from the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR). Her research, book reviews, and media commentaries have appeared in The Communication Review, Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism, the American Journal of Sociology, the World Policy Institute Blog and Public Books. Sandra is a co-chair of the Emerging Scholars Network of IAMCR, co-director of CAMRA, an interdisciplinary media collective, and an honorary, non-resident Research Fellow at the Center for Media, Data and Society at the Central European University in Hungary.


Alyea SandovarAlyea Sandovar (Fielding Graduate University, Santa Barbara (CA), USA)
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Alyea Sandovar is a games researcher and self-taught game designer. She sees digital games as an art form. Alyea specifically focuses on game designers perceptions of culture and how these perceptions may inform the design of their games. Since 2011, Alyea is Ph.D. candidate for Human Organizational Systems, Video Game Design at Fielding Graduate University. Her research focuses on digital games as an art form and how game designers use cultural frames to inform game elements during game design.


Sela SarSela Sar (University of Illinois, USA)
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Sela Sar is an associate professor of advertising at the Charles H. Sandage Department of Advertising, University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign. He earned his PhD from the University of Minnesota –Twin Cities. His research focuses on how consumers’ prior mood and emotional states that integrate with social communication campaigns influence people’s attitudes and behaviors. He won several top faculty awards from the Advertising and Visual Communication Divisions of the AEJMC. One of his articles has won the Highly Commended Paper award in 2013 in the Journal of Social Marketing. His research has been published in the International Journal of Advertising, the Journal of Advertising, JMCQ, Psychology & Marketing, Journal of Current Issues and Research in Advertising, Health Marketing Quarterly, and Journal of Marketing Communications. He is also Vice/program Chair of the Advertising Division of the AEJMC, 2014-2015.

Quintarrius ShakirQuintarrius Shakir (University of California, Santa Barbara (CA), USA)

Quintarrius Shakir is a PhD candidate for Sociology at the University of California Santa Barbara. Quintarrius studied Sociology at the Emory University in Atlanta and completed his Masters in Sociology at the University of California Santa Barbara in April 2015. His research areas are social psychology, interpersonal communication, sociology of culture, social conflict, qualitative research, race, class, and gender. Since 2014, Quintarrius is Vice President of Communications and Records at UC Santa Barbara Graduate Student Association.


Rachel SomersteinRachel Somerstein (SUNY, USA)
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Rachel Somerstein is an assistant professor of journalism at SUNY New Paltz. She researches visual collective memory in news photography, documentary and feature films, and in television news. Her work on mediated collective memories has appeared in Journalism and Visual Studies and has been featured on NPR’s On the Media. Currently, she is working on a paper about the representation of the Holocaust and postmemory in Wes Anderson’s Grand Budapest Hotel and an analysis of how U.S. television news commemorated anniversaries of the Berlin Wall’s opening from 1990 through 2009. Rachel also writes about photography and visual culture for Afterimage, ART + AUCTION, and Guernica: A Journal of Art & Politics, among other publications. She holds a Ph.D. in mass communications from Syracuse University, an M.F.A. in creative writing from New York University, and a B.A. in English and history from Cornell University.


David StatonDavid Staton (University of Oregon, Eugene (OR), USA)
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David Staton (PhD coursework completed, University of Oregon, Media Studies; M.A. SUNY, Purchase, Art History; B.A. University of New Mexico, Journalism) has been a staff writer at the Albuquerque Journal for many years, before he moved to freelance writing for regional and national publications and eventually settled into owner/director roles in the visual arts gallery world. He’s the co-founder of Taylor Cat Productions, a multi-media, full service production company specializing in non-fiction storytelling. The company’s recent project, Homefront Heroines, is now at festivals, following its debut in the Sarasota Film Festival. TCP’s next documentary, focused on pinup culture, is now in post-production.  He also has been an adjunct instructor of journalism at Miami University and the University of Colorado, Boulder. David’s interests include how visual communications inform identity construction and the mediation of cultural and recreational experience.


Murdoch StephensMurdoch Stephens (Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand)
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Murdoch Stephens is completing a PhD in Communication at Massey University. His interests extend from refugee and asylum issues to ecology, digitisation and organisation theory. His thesis asks how the theories of Peter Sloterdijk, Bruno Latour, Timothy Morton and Slavoj Zizek have balanced truth claims around climate change with the doubt of critique. He runs the Doing Our Bit campaign to increase New Zealand’s refugee quota and funding, is editor-in-chief at Lawrence and Gibson publishing and helps run the 19 Tory St open-source community gallery in central Wellington.


Michael SülflowMichael Sülflow (Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany)
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Michael Sülflow is a research assistant at the Department of Communication at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. He studied communication science at the University of Greifswald, Free University Berlin and University of Zurich. His research interests include political communication, visual communication and comparative media research.


Melinda R. WeathersMelinda R. Weathers (Clemson University, Clemson (SC), USA)
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Melinda R. Weathers is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at Clemson University. Her scholarly interests include intercultural communication, interpersonal communication, gender and women’s health issues, and new communication technologies. Melinda’s research has encompassed a range of topics addressing issues related to intercultural and interpersonal messages within relational, institutional, societal, and health contexts. Specifically, she has explored communication-related issues between doctors and patients, Hispanic caregivers and older adults, and in heterosexual dating relationships. Ultimately, her research seeks to better understand how effective communication relates to the wellbeing of persons and society. She has published in journals such as Howard Journal of Communications, Communication Studies, Patient Education and Counseling, and Communication Education. Her research has been recognized through top paper awards from the National Communication Association and Central States Communication Association. Melinda received her PhD in Communication from George Mason University, a master’s degree in Speech Communication from the University of Houston, and a bachelor’s degree in Speech Communication from Texas A&M University.


Ieva ZakareviciuteIeva Zakareviciute (Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich, Germany)
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Ieva Zakareviciute is a PhD researcher at the Ludwig Maximilian University. She holds a scholarship from Gerda Henkel Stiftung foundation and works in liaison with INFOCORE – research project studying the role of media in violent conflict. She studies visual representations of violent conflicts and imagery diffusion in various media, primarily focusing on conflicts in the Middle East. In her research she combines framing theories, approaches of conflict and visual anthropology. In 2011, Ieva graduated from Vilnius University Institute of International Relations and Political Sciences. She earned MA degree in Social Anthropology from Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas in 2013. During her studies she mainly focused on the Middle East region and conducted fieldworks in Israel, Palestine and Egypt. During her professional years she also worked as a consultant for Communication and Information Sector at UNESCO Office in Cairo and contributed to various media outlets.


Yue ZhengYue Zheng (University of South Carolina, Columbia (SC), USA)
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Yue Zheng is a presidential doctoral fellow in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of South Carolina. Her research interests include nonprofit public relations and health communications. Yue Zheng earned her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Renmin University of China in Beijing, China in June 2008; and then obtained her Master of Science in Journalism and Mass Communications as well as a Statistics Minor from Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa in May 2012. She is currently teaching an undergraduate class of Communication Research Method.

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