ICA Preconference 2017

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Call for Papers

for the

ICA Young Scholars Preconference on Interventions in the Practice of Visual Communication Research

University of California at San Diego (San Diego, California)

Thursday May 25, 2017

EXTENDED DEADLINE: 31 January 2017

Organizers
Samantha Close (University of Southern California, USA), Ayellet Pelled (University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA), David L. Morris II (University of Oregon, USA), Giorgia Aiello (University of Leeds, UK)

Rationale
Intervention comes in different forms. Research questions aim to intervene in societal and philosophical problems, scholarly conferences and initiatives intervene within the halls of academia and the practice of contemporary research, and publication intervenes in both scholarly and public debate.

As society becomes increasingly mediatized through both digital technologies and nostalgic returns to traditional folk arts, it is essential to analyze the specifically visual aspects of communicating in the social world. And yet, because of this same cultural and technological upsurge in visual communication, scholars who focus on the visual are often spread across ICA divisions based on the non-visual content of their work, from health communication to popular communication to rhetoric to technology and beyond. Scholarship is also increasingly presented using visual images, to both public and academic audiences. This raises challenges in communication and publication, particularly for young scholars.

We aim to bring together a critical mass of emerging and senior scholars to discuss, reflect, and challenge each other on our interventions into the visual. In this way, the preconference is also an intervention into scholarly careers in the still-growing field of visual communication studies.

Aims
This one-day preconference will bring together young scholars (current Ph.D. students and early career postdoctoral researchers) engaged in promising research on visual communication. We aim to 1) theorize key challenges in visual communication research and publication; 2) provide strategies for addressing and overcoming these challenges; 3) provide a forum for cross-divisionaland transnational networking between young and senior scholars; and 4) provide feedback on young scholars’ research projects and publication plans.

Format
This event follows two very successful ICA Young Scholars Visual Communication Studies preconferences in San Juan 2015 and Fukuoka 2016, which featured presentation and workshop sessions with young and senior scholars from ten countries. This year’s preconference will follow a similar format but focus on a new, complementary set of issues and questions.

First, an opening keynote will give an overview of key interventions into visual communication research happening now and those needed to advance the discipline.

Second, in poster, non-traditional, and brief oral presentation sessions, young scholars will have the opportunity to present their research projects, discuss their challenges in conceptualizing and communicating their projects with other participants, network with peers, and receive substantial feedback on their projects from experienced senior scholars. All young and senior scholars will participate in the presentation sessions, a format that provides a practice-oriented overview of a range of approaches to visual communication studies and common challenges.

Third, young scholars and senior experts will split into smaller breakout groups for focused discussionon a specific aspect of visual communication studies research.

Finally, in a closing plenary, we will summarize key insights originating from discussions in the breakout groups and, together with all participants, we will discuss ideas and plans for future networking and research events.

Submissions
We invite young scholars from all ICA divisions and interest groups to submit extended abstracts on both completed and ongoing projects. We welcome submissions on all aspects of the visual communication process (production context, media context, reception context) and on all visualmethods, as well as on a broad range of topics, such as visual political communication, visual science and health communication, visual popular communication, etc.

This year, ICA has for the first time explicitly called for scholarly projects in non-traditional formats through the “Making and Doing” exhibition to follow the opening plenary. Non-traditional publication and visual communication research are closely allied, as many alternative publication formats take advantage of the unique affordances of the visual or themselves interrogate visual communication. We particularly invite submissions of in-progress work in these non-traditional formats, or which use “making and doing” methods, by young scholars.

Extended abstracts should briefly summarize the project, including theory, methods, results (where applicable), and its relevance to the study of the visual. Please specifically discuss challenges in conceptualizing and communicating the visual aspects of the project, as well as in which areas senior scholar feedback would be most useful.

Extended abstracts should be limited to a maximum of 1,000 words (double-spaced; illustrations, tables and references do not count against this total of words). Please remove all identifying information from the document and include a separate title page indicating the name(s) of the author(s), the affiliation(s) of the author(s), the title of the project, and the status of the project (e.g. completed project, work in progress). Please also note your preference for presentation format (e.g. poster, brief talk, non-traditional, or no preference).

Please send your submissions via e-mail to sclose@usc.edu no later than 31 January 2017. Decisions will be made by 28 February 2017. The preconference will be open to a maximum of 40 young scholars. Participants will be selected based on the quality of their extended abstracts. In the review process, we will also consider that a reasonable range of topics will be covered by the poster presentations and that participants can be grouped in breakout sessions focused on similar concerns.

Venue
The preconference will be hosted on the campus of the University of California at San Diego in San Diego, CA. Transportation from the main conference hotel to the university campus and vice versa will be provided for all participants with a chartered bus (about 15-30 minutes each way).

Fee
There will be a US $106 fee for preconference participants to cover transportation, room rental, and catering costs. Depending on the availability of additional funding for the preconference, we may also be able to offer a discounted fee at the time of registration.

Website
Please also visit the accompanying website www.visualcommunicationstudies.net  for any updates on the preconference.

Contacts
Please do not hesitate to contact us in case you should have any questions regarding the preconference.

Samantha Close, University of Southern California
sclose@usc.edu

Ayellet Pelled, University of Wisconsin-Madison
pelled@wisc.edu

David L. Morris II, University of Oregon
dmorris3@uoregon.edu

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