IAMCR 2011 Conference Update

istanbulIt's All Systems Go!  
IAMCR on target for Istanbul Conference 2011, July 13-17!

With barely three weeks to go, planning is now in high gear for another exceptional IAMCR conference, to be held in Istanbul, Turkey, July 13-17, under the theme Cities, Creativity, Connectivity.

The conference will be attended by close to 1000 registered academics and researchers, participating in some 340 concurrent panel sessions and 24 poster sessions.

While the majority of attendees will be established scholars from Europe and North America, Istanbul will also see participation from a strong contingent of experienced scholars from the developing countries and a large number of emerging scholars, young researchers and students from all continents.

Plenary Sessions

Following an Opening Ceremony that will start at 6:00 p.m. on July 13, the Conference will move into high gear with the first of three plenary panels of distinguished researchers from all over the world. This first plenary session will start at 9:00 am on July 14 and will take the form of the Presidential Conversations panel, addressing the Conference theme: Cities, Creativity, Connectivity.

On July 15 at 11:00 a.m., the second plenary panel, dubbed Istanbulscapes will showcase leading Turkish scholars exploring the cultural, economic and communications dynamics of the cosmopolitan host city of Istanbul itself.

The third plenary, on July 16, also starting at 11:00 a.m. will see a return to a global context with a cutting edge international panel on Urban Cultures, Creativity and Popular Communication.

All three plenary sessions will take place in the main conference hall of the Kadir Has University, the central venue for the Conference.

As part of the on-going relationship between the IAMCR and UNESCO, the Conference will host a consultation on issues of Media and Information Literacy on July 14, during the double concurrent sessions spanning 2:30 and 4:00 p.m. and 4.30 to 6:00 p.m. The UNESCO consultations will be led by leaders of both UNESCO and the IAMCR.

Special Sessions

The concurrent panel presentations will be further highlighted by four special sessions on topical issues relating to the global communications and political landscapes.

On July 15, the controversial issue of WikiLeaks will be tackled in two back-to-back Special Sessions. The first one, starting at 2:30 p.m. will be a Roundtable on the media and communications lessons to be learned from the emergence of WikiLeaks. The second WikiLeaks session, starting at 4:30 p.m., also in July 15, will look at various legal, political and communications implications of the activities of the 'whistle-blower website' and its leading proponents.

Another Special Session, on July 16 at 4:30 p.m., will confront  the issue of Universities in Crisis, hosted by the Emerging Scholars Network of the IAMCR.  On the final day of the Conference, July 17 from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m., yet another Special Session will explore the communications implications of the political events in the Middle East and North Africa. This session will be addressed by a number of media and communications researchers who have either been keen observers or have been touched directly by what has become known as the Arab Spring.

Keep Abreast!

Participants at IAMCR 2011 will be exposed to, and be entertained by a range of social events, optional tours and special activities, details of which are available on the conference website. The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) led by Deniz Bayrakdar, Levent Soysal and Banu Baybars-Hawks, has been pulling out all stops to ensure that the experience in Istanbul will be second to none!

Be sure to keep abreast of all activities by also visiting the IAMCR website. You are also urged to remain active with us on both Facebook and Twitter, where the IAMCR's work and developments relating to the Conference will constantly be showcased and monitored.

If you use Twitter, use the hashtag #iamcr2011 and if you post photos or videos on a social networking site, consider using iamcr2011 as a tag so colleagues can find them.

See you in Istanbul!

Hopeton Dunn,
IAMCR Secretary General
June 5, 2011