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International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR)
Community Communication Section (ComCom)

IAMCR Conference 2011, 13-17 July 2011, Istanbul

Proposal submission deadline: February 8, 2011


The Community Communication Section invites submissions for the IAMCR 2011
Conference in Istanbul, Turkey. Any proposal within the research area is
welcome, but we will consider with priority proposals for this year¹s
thematic focus areas (details below). In addition to individual papers, we
hope to receive proposals for panels, workshops and innovative session
formats, including field trips and screenings.

Open call: General proposals in the ComCom research area
The Community Communication Section is a major international forum for
community, alternative, citizens' and civil society media studies. It
focuses on media practices that differ significantly from government- and
market-dominated paradigms. This includes do-it-yourself media, media for
and by communities of locality or interest, communication practices of
social movements, media that form a non-profit 'third sector' next to public
service and commercial media, and a wide range of other non-governmental and
non-commercial practices. These media incorporate a broad variety of
communication technology uses, from newsletters to mobile phones, from
community radio to online communities.
Relevant research questions include the development, adaptation and
appropriation of communication technologies by marginalized groups and
sectors; the effectiveness, impact and sustainability of community and
alternative media; innovative forms of media activism; non-profit media
interactions with state and market; the social, economic, legal and
political environment; and appropriate theories and research methods for
these media. 
Theoretical approaches typically come from social movement research,
community theory, communication rights, theories of political art, of civil
society, citizenship and democracy, and theories from migration studies,
among others.
(Also see ŒSubmitting to the right section¹ below).

ComCom focus areas for the IAMCR 2011 Conference

1. 'Cities, Creativity, Connectivity'
The IAMCR 2011 conference stands under the general theme 'Cities,
Creativity, Connectivity'.  Cities are areas of social and economic
activity, artistic and activist creativity, and inter-cultural dialogue and
conflict, embedded in regional and global contexts.  The theme emphasizes
communities of geography, as well as inter-local interactions.
Papers in the ComCom section may investigate the role of community
communication and alternative media in redefining notions of citizenship and
challenging traditional national allegiances. What is the role of such media
in changing notions of Œplace¹ and Œbelonging¹?  How do urban social groups
and movements use various online and offline forms of community
communication for their mobilizations and interventions? How does socially
engaged art relate to urban social and cultural movements? What does
community radio in the 21st century look like? What is the future of Œlocal¹
community media in the trans-local and global digital media environment? How
do such media contribute to democratization and to new understandings of
'the public' in socially fragmented environments? What is their role in
local communities marked by strife? What are the regional and global
contexts for such media, and how are they transformed due to transnational
migration? Investigations may include hybrid media forms and rhizomatic
media that connect different communities.

2. Infrastructure and technology
The section is interested in platforms, technologies, and spaces for
alternative and community media, and more generally for forms of expression
by social movements. How do activists combine production/distribution
platforms and technologies? How can blogs and social networks (including
commercial ones) complement traditional alternative media? What is the
impact of the digital switchover on community radio and TV, and what are its
social, technical, economic and policy implications?
The section also encourages analysis of the flipside of technological
innovation: the web hype and the over-enthusiastic use of new (and typically
commercial) social networking platforms. What are the problems with Web 2.0
and citizen journalism from the standpoint of alternative media and
community media practice?
3. Community Communication Policy
Many countries have recently legalized community broadcasting, and many more
are considering it. We call for critical investigations into these
processes, the impact of civil society interventions, positive examples of
new legislation around the globe, comparative country level studies, reviews
of the emergence of international/regional norms and standards, but also
critiques of the normalization and mainstreaming of  community media.
At the same time, alternative media continue to be subject to attacks by
both commercial and state forces, and access to communication infrastructure
is curbed both online (e.g., through challenges to net neutrality) and
offline (e.g., through radio frequency auctions). We encourage
investigations into these issues, and relations between community
communication and other policy fields, such as Internet governance and
intellectual property rights.
4. Theory for Community and Alternative Media
The section seeks to advance theoretical and conceptual development. This
includes investigating, continuing and challenging the theoretical
directions laid out by key thinkers in the field; developing understandings
of relevant emerging concepts, such as Œthe commons¹; and questioning the
meanings and practices of established concepts, such as 'participation'.
5.    Alternative models of researching, teaching and publishing
What are the methods, experiences and key concerns for researching and
teaching alternative and community media? How does the political economy of
research and publishing affect the work in our field? What would be
alternative publishing models for research?

Submission Guidelines
€ Submission Format:

Submit proposal(s) online at http://iamcr2011istanbul.com/
You must include:
 (1) Title, author/coordinator name(s), institutional affiliation(s) and
full contact information (mailing address, email address, and telephone
(2) Topic area (open session or special session in one of the 5 above
(3) Type of proposal:
 (a) Individual or co-authored paper: Applicants must submit a 300 word
abstract that describes the topic of their paper and its significance, the
theoretical framework, and research methods. Please indicate if you would be
willing to chair a session.
(b) Panel proposal: The panel coordinator must submit a well-defined
statement of purpose, a complete list of panel participants, and full
abstracts for each presentation in one document.
(c) Other format (workshops, screenings, field trips, forums, etc.): The
coordinator must submit a well-defined statement of purpose and a detailed
description of activities, as well as any infrastructure requirements
(space, projectors, etc.).
If your submission lacks any of the information above, it may be rejected on
technical grounds.

€ Multiple Submissions

Our section accepts only one paper abstract submission per person (as main
author). You may additionally act as coordinator or discussant in a session,
present a short contribution in a panel or other format session, or be
listed as secondary author in another paper.
Do not submit the same paper abstract to more than one IAMCR division. You
are allowed to submit up to 2 different abstracts (as main author) to
different sections, but we encourage you to limit yourself to presenting one
paper at the conference. Please consider that if you present more than once,
there is less room for discussing your work and others have less opportunity
to present.

€ Deadlines

February 8, 2011:  Submission of abstracts
(papers will be assessed by double blind review of abstracts).
March 25, 2011: announcement of acceptances.
June 3, 2011: Full papers due.

€ Submitting to the Right Section

You are only allowed to submit the same abstract to one section. Please
consider carefully if our IAMCR section is most appropriate for your paper
(check the list of sections at http://iamcr.org ). If you submit your
proposal to the wrong section, it may be rejected (time permitting, we may
try to forward papers to the appropriate section). Please contact us well
before the deadline if you are unsure.

- Researchers examining community media for development purposes should
consider applying to the Participatory Communication Research Section.
- Researchers studying ethnic community media within a Diaspora  framework
should consider applying to the Diaspora and Media Working Group.
- Researchers using a market-based perspective or focusing on the Œhobby¹
aspect of personalized media are not encouraged to apply to this section.

€ Language
You can submit your abstract and your paper in English, French or Spanish.
If at all possible, please supply an English translation (even a brief
summary) of your abstract and your paper. For the conference, please try to
prepare some material (a computer assisted presentation, a handout etc.), at
least partly in English. This will help you get better feedback and
contribute more to the international discussion.
The section has no funds to hire translators. We are looking for volunteer
translators/interpreters for abstracts, sessions and papers. If you can
contribute in this way, please contact us.

€ Further information
IAMCR: http://www.iamcr.org/
ComCom: http://www.iamcr.org/content/blogcategory/51/201/
2011 Conference: http://iamcr2011istanbul.com/
ComCom online contact form:
Gabriele Hadl (chair) k70[at]mac.com
Ellie Rennie  (vice-chair) ERennie[at]GROUPWISE.SWIN.EDU.AU
Arne Hintz  (vice-chair) arne.hintz[at]mcgill.ca