Aims and Objectives: The aim of the network is to strengthen the ability of MeCCSA and its members to respond to and lead the worldwide academic contribution to understanding media, communication and cultural studies where they meet issues of climate change, environment and sustainable development; it will do this by continually encourage MeCCSA and its members to conduct research and seek interventions that account for the sustainability of its impact.
The network will focus on strengthening MeCCSA through:
- Aligned and complementary activity to the existing MeCCSA networks and section
- Engagement with policy-makers, civil society and practitioners
- Filtering and prioritising the urgency of the requirement to respond to changes in environmental, sustainable development and scientific knowledge
- Maintaining and growing a strand at the main MeCCSA conference and events beyond
- Producing world leading research under the MeCCSA umbrella
- Developing a directory of researchers to facilitate collaboration and learning across disciplines
Rationale: Now is the time for academics and practitioners of media, communication and cultural studies to find a way to strengthen our responses to these questions: a response that will not only impact research that engages directly with these issues, but all our work. Put simply, creativity and intellect through collaboration is the most productive operating principle available to us: a network response to a systemic problem. This network would be a reflection of the strength and principle at the heart of MeCCSA. It is not simply a proposal from a particular group of interested parties. It is a statement of intent to fully consider our practice as academics and as human beings located in the nexus of global crises. A network will help us answer the question: how do we place environmental considerations in our research so that we always account for its fundamental role in sustaining life?
1) Practice: Understanding the ways in which media, communication and cultural practices are impacting upon issues of climate change, sustainability and environment; the network will provide opportunities to create and discover how praxis in its broadest form is generating understanding and change in relation to questions of environment and sustainability.
2) Professionals: Working with the MeCCSA Policy Network, the CCES Network would deliver responses to public hearings, and support other individuals and organisations interested in such interventions by providing them with expert evidence, based on academic research. The channelling of such direct impact back into industry and government can only stand the media, communication and cultural studies disciplines in good stead.
3) Research: The network will pool knowledge and provide a place for researchers focused on these issues to explore work and collaboration, share and learn from each other, and develop the breadth and depth of critical thought required for meeting these questions head-on.
4) Activist and NGO engagement: Improve the ability of researchers to engage with these groups in conducting and providing critical analysis of their communication and media practices, and strengthen the links between academia and third sector activity in bringing about positive change.
5) Sustainability in academic practice: A key objective of the network will be to focus on self-reflexivity in academic practice to ensure our institutional policies are aligned with responsible research agendas.
6) Curriculum and pedagogy: Finding ways to further integrate themes of sustainable development into UK-HEI curricula, and promote consideration for all aspects of the environment when innovating with teaching and learning strategies.
Outputs and Deliverables
The network will generate a series of outputs from its work that could include:
- Targeted events and collaborations, e.g. with the East Anglia TV seminar series
- A series of research programmes exploring practice, professional activity and theory
- Policy interventions in collaboration with the MeCCSA Policy Network
- A strand of activity at MeCCSA conferences
- Long term, an open access journal to reflect the demand to publish