Call for papers – University of Copenhagen

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Call for papers

The call for proposals is now closed.

We received a great number of proposals which have now been evaluated, and notifications have been sent to successful participants. Please follow the guidelines on this webpage in order to register for the conference no later that September 15.

The submission of full papers prior to the conference is optional.

We welcome your contributions to this event. Proposals for paper presentation should include the author's name and affiliation, title, an abstract of 250-300 words, and 3 to 5 key words, and should be sent to the e-mail address no later than July 1st 2012.

In order to be accepted for presentation, the proposal has to develop a subject in connection to the theme of the conference. Theoretical contributions in the fields of new media and the public sphere, presentation of on-going research and empirical studies are welcome along one of the following (but not limited to) discussion lines:

Democracy and the online public sphere. Much has been written on the democratic potential of new media, with rather limited success in answering the question of whether the Internet favors the public sphere and democracy, or it hinders it. Habermas, the public sphere pioneer, seems to be of the second opinion. But the ‘Occupy’ movement and the more recent case of the Arab Spring showed that the mobilizing potential of new media - and social media in particular - against mainstream politics is a reality of our time. Is the public sphere in the network society a sphere of counterpublics? With the shifting border between the private and the public space, how can we address the political-cultural division in the public sphere?

Cultural production in the digital age. The shift from a member of a rather silent audience and a consumer to an interactive user and content producer has redefined the production relations of the contemporary society. Within the flat network structure of the information society, user-generated and collaborative content redefine media production, giving birth to what is increasingly called ‘network culture’, or the culture of prosumers and produsers. Professional and citizens journalism converge, changing the way we make, distribute and consume news. While it is ideally open to all, participation in cultural production and in the public sphere is limited by lack of interest and by the digital divide, among others. How do we (re)define cultural production in the digital age? How does the digital divide affect participation in the public sphere?

Identity in the virtual sphere. New media are characterized by their strong user focus. Hypertextuality and interactivity ensure we experience new media differently, tailored to our needs and interests. In the digitally-driven society we experience various simultaneous roles. We are offline and online citizens, consumers and producers. We are a part of various communities, virtual and real, we are publishers, occasional journalists, bloggers and social media users. We are active or apathetic, engaged or passive, anonymous or named. New media reshape the idea of community and the way we perceive the other. Identity becomes increasingly fluid and changeable online. In this context, it is interesting to explore how we experience and perform these roles, and how new media shape our identity.

Net neutrality and public participation. The recent and viral cases of SOPA, PIPA, and ACTA have brought the issue of net neutrality back on top of the public agenda. New media appear as a battlefield between those protecting copyright and those promoting democratization of technology and the freedom of accessing and sharing content. Ultimately, participation in the online public sphere is determined by regulatory framework in which new media and technologies operate. It becomes essential to discuss the role of regulation policies and standardization processes, and their effects on institutional and individual use of technology.

The evaluation committee

Prof. Hans-Jörg Trenz, CEMES, Univ. of Copenhagen
Prof. Klaus Bruhn Jensen, Center for Communication and Computing, Univ. of Copenhagen
Cecilie Givskov, PhD, Dept. of Media, Cognition and Communication, Univ. of Copenhagen
Ancuta-Gabriela Tarta, PhD Candidate, Dept. of Media, Cognition and Communication, Univ. of Copenhagen

Notifications of acceptance will be sent to contributors by the end of August 2012.


Once your paper is accepted, please follow the guidelines under Registration to sign up for the event. Registration without paper is also possible. Deadline for registration is September 15.

ECTS points

PhD students' participation in the conference is awarded 0,5 ECTS points (participation in both days without paper) or 2 ECTS points (participation with paper presentation).