Journalism, Media and Culture

Faculty in Journalism, Culture and Communication analyze emerging and enduring forms of public communication and the institutional and economic conditions that sustain them. They employ a range of research methods, including ethnography, textual and historical analysis, and political economic approaches to media industries. As digital technologies have transformed mediated practices, the faculty has opened a series of new areas of inquiry, including computational journalism, the study of algorithms in institutions, and the cultural history of Silicon Valley.

Angéle Christin is an assistant professor. She is interested in fields and organizations where algorithms and ‘big data’ analytics transform professional values, expertise, and work practices. In her dissertation, she analyzed the growing importance of audience metrics in web journalism in the United States and France. Drawing on ethnographic methods, she examined how American and French journalists make sense of traffic numbers in different ways, which in turn has distinct effects on the production of news in the two countries. In a new project, she studies the construction, institutionalization, and reception of analytics and predictive algorithms in the U.S. criminal justice system.

Ted Glasser is an emeritus professor.  His teaching and research focus on media practices and performance, with emphasis on questions of press responsibility and accountability. His books include Normative Theories of the Media: Journalism in Democratic Societies, written with Clifford Christians, Denis McQuail, Kaarle Nordenstreng, and Robert White, which in 2010 won the Frank Luther Mott-Kappa Tau Alpha award for best research-based book on journalism/mass communication and was one of three finalists for the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication’s Tankard Book Award; The Idea of Public Journalism, an edited collection of essays, recently translated into Chinese; Custodians of Conscience: Investigative Journalism and Public Virtue, written with James S. Ettema, which won the Society of Professional Journalists’ award for best research on journalism, the Bart Richards Award for Media Criticism, and the Frank Luther Mott-Kappa Tau Alpha award for the best research-based book on journalism/mass communication; Public Opinion and the Communication of Consent, edited with Charles T. Salmon; and Media Freedom and Accountability, edited with Everette E. Dennis and Donald M. Gillmor.  His research, commentaries and book reviews have appeared in a variety of publications, including the Journal of Communication, Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, Critical Studies in Mass Communication, Journalism Studies, Policy Sciences, Journal of American History, Quill, Nieman Reports and The New York Times Book Review.

James Hamilton is the director of the Journalism Program. His work on the economics of news focuses on the market failures involved in the production of public affairs coverage and the generation of investigative reporting. Through research in the emerging area of computational journalism, he is exploring how to lower the cost of discovering stories about the operation of political institutions.

Fred Turner is Chair of the Department. He was a journalist for ten years before he returned for his Ph.D. and became a cultural historian of media and media technologies. Trained in both Communication and Science and Technology Studies, he has long been interested in how media and American culture have shaped one another over time. His most recent work has focused on the rise of American technocracy since World War II and on the aesthetic and ideological manifestations of that rise in the digital era. He continues to write for newspapers and magazines and strongly supports researchers who seek to have a public impact with their work.

Like all Communication faculty, the members of the Journalism, Communication and Culture group routinely collaborate with colleagues from around the campus. The group enjoys particularly strong collaborations with sociologists, historians, art historians, and computer scientists.