Call for proposals

The International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) invites the submission of abstracts of papers and proposals for panels for the 2019 Congress of the Association, which will be held from 7 to 11 July, 2019 at the Complutense University of Madrid, Spain. The deadline for submission is 8 February 2019, at 23.59 UTC.

IAMCR conferences address a wide diversity of topics defined by our 32 thematic sections and working groups. We also propose a single central theme to be explored throughout the conference with the aim of generating and exploring multiple perspectives. This is accomplished through plenary and special sessions, and in some of the sessions of the sections and working groups. The central theme for 2019 focuses on communication, technology, and human dignity.

Download this call for proposals as a PDF file

Consult the calls for proposals of IAMCR's 32 thematic sections and working groups

Submit your proposal

Communication, Technology, and Human Dignity: Disputed Rights, Contested Truths

The year 2018 saw the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. At its heart was the premise that everyone had the right to live in dignity. In the intervening years, with the successive growth of television, the explosion of digital media, and the emergence of artificial intelligence, communication systems have become ever more central to organizing every aspect of daily life, prompting renewed attention to questions around their role in both supporting and subverting the exercise of rights and the achievement of universal dignity.

The right to voice and visibility, to have one’s experiences and ideas fairly represented in the heartlands of public culture is now established as a basic human right alongside rights of access to the comprehensive information and analysis that supports individual expression and social participation on a basis of equality, dignity and mutual respect.

Under current conditions these fundamental communication-related rights are under increasing pressure and threat. Control over the organisation of innovations in communication and their applications has increasing passed from governments to corporations. Concern with the public interest and the common good has been increasing displaced by business models designed to maximise revenues. These models are bolstering appeals to consumption while weakening the social contract of citizenship, providing new and largely unregulated platforms for the dissemination of rumour, misinformation and ‘fake’ news, ushering in the era of so called ‘post truth’ and reinforcing social and political polarization

These developments are taking place against a backdrop of rapidly widening inequalities of income and wealth both within countries and between different areas of the world. One visible manifestation of these changes is the escalating volume of migrations driven by political and environmental as well as economic pressures. The resulting expansion in the numbers of refugees and displaced persons poses new challenges for the rights of minorities and for guarantees of personal freedom and full access to citizens’ rights

With Communication, Technology and Human Dignity as the principal themes, the 2019 Madrid Congress aims to generate a cross-disciplinary debate that brings differing but interacting perspectives to bear on the urgent issues raised by present developments. This objective will be the primary focus of the plenary sessions and special sessions and as in previous years we encourage sections and the working groups to pay particular attention to the core themes in organizing their programs, while not precluding presentations based on recent research and theorizing in other areas covered by their remits.

The objective should not simply be to present new evidence and theorizing on key issues, but to reflect on the situation today in order to suggest how present developments may unfold in future and to engage with the challenges they present for research, policy and action.

At IAMCR Madrid 2019, we aim to analyse the impact of the latest advances in communication technology on society, culture and human rights, giving special importance to the quality and authenticity of sources and messages in view of increased mechanization and artificial intelligence. The context of these problems is how the advance of technology affects the quality of human life, how communication technology affects the objectivity of facts, and how the geopolitical and socioeconomic contexts are affected by the most recent changes in the structure and modes adopted by communication processes.

Present tendencies and scenarios pose urgent questions for individual and social rights. How can communication continue to facilitate human connection ,understanding and mutual respect in the face of the ever-increasing technological nature of the media and geopolitical turbulence? How can we define and reflect on our personal and social identities at a time when the emerging technologies and other factors call into question the established notion of “belonging to a nation”?

We are faced then with clear challenges in respect of the quality of communication, the quality of life and human dignity.

We encourage participants to address these issues both from the viewpoint of the predominant communication systems and from those which are arising from the use of the new technologies – artificial intelligence, the growth of automation and robotics, Big Data and the Internet of Things. We also welcome analyses which re-evaluate and take a fresh look at human dignity in respect of geopolitics, the present-day socio-economic context, religion, transparency, accessibility and discrimination, and the re-composition of power, in the overall context of the implications of technology and communication in an interconnected world.

Topics addressing the central theme could include the following, among others:

  • Process automation and its relevance in respect of journalism
  • Big Data and its implications regarding privacy
  • The massive use of control systems in political and legal decision making
  • The organization of international political and economic systems at the service of individuals and groups in society
  • The basis of human rights in a society which is becoming ever more technological and turbulent
  • Equality and discrimination from the point of view of migration, membership, citizenship and the “right to belong”
  • Theoretical and applied research in Communication, Human Dignity and Communication
  • “Post-truth” from linguistic and other viewpoints
  • Fake news and social network bots
  • Digital journalism and today’s challenges in writing and publishing news
  • Open source apps for news and journalism
  • Journalism and computer programming
  • International law and its effective application in different regions
  • The value of texts such as Article 1 of the European Charter of Fundamental Rights
  • Online advertising and its implications for consumers and their privacy
  • D&A (Data & Analysis) and confidence in senior management
  • Social impact of investments and divestments
  • Machines and robots in audiovisual imagination (their depiction in cinema and literature)
  • Artificial intelligence and games
  • Under-age and young audiences and new mediations
  • Ethics in automated media
  • Communication to empower citizens and reinforce their rights
  • Big Data to generate trust in media
  • How technology threatens and enables communication processes
  • How communication and technology challenge copyright and intellectual property
  • Human dignity, health communication and solidarity
  • Poverty, inequality and the throw-away society
  • The challenges of iHealth (telemedicine, etc.)
  • Cultural studies
  • Human dignity and religion

Not all submissions have to address the central theme. See the individual calls for proposals of the sections and working groups for other themes.

Deadlines and important dates

The deadline to submit abstracts is 8 February 2019, at 23.59 UTC.

  • 3 December 2018 - Abstract submission system opens at
  • 8 February 2019 - Deadline to submit abstracts
  • 28 March 2019 - Abstract decisions announced by sections and working groups
  • 7 April 2019 - Deadline to apply for travel grants and awards
  • 11 April 2019 - Deadline to confirm participation
  • 7 May 2019 - Draft conference programme schedule released
  • 14 May 2019 - Last day for Early bird registration
  • 7 June 2019 - Deadline for full paper submission
  • 17 June 2019 - Last day for changes to be made in the print version of the programme
  • 7-11 July 2019 - IAMCR Conference


Different sections and working groups have different policies regarding languages. Some accept abstract and programme sessions in English, French and Spanish while others conduct their programmes in only one or two languages. Consult the individual CfPs for details on the language policy of each section.

Guidelines for abstracts

Abstracts should be between 300 and 500 words, unless a particular Section or Working Group establishes their own criterion in this respect. All abstracts must be submitted through the IAMCR Open Conference System. Abstracts sent by email will not be accepted.

It is expected that each person will submit only one (1) abstract. However, under no circumstances should there be more than two (2) abstracts bearing the name of the same author, either individually or as part of any group of authors. Please note also that the same abstract or another version with minor variations in title or content must not be submitted to more than one Section or Working Group. Such submissions will be deemed to be in breach of the conference guidelines and will be rejected by the OCS system, by the relevant Head or by the Conference Programme Reviewer. Authors submitting them risk being removed entirely from the conference programme.

Technical guidelines, if any, are defined by the individual Sections and Working Groups. If you have questions, consult the Section or Working Group's specific CFP or contact the head of the Section and Working Group that interests you.

For further information, please consult the IAMCR Madrid 2019 web page or contact the Local Organizing Committee by email: or the heads of the section or working group you are interested in.

Evaluation Criteria

  • Submitted abstracts will generally be evaluated on the basis of:
  • Theoretical contribution
  • Methods
  • Quality of writing
  • Literature review
  • Relevance of the proposal to the work of the Section or Working Group
  • Originality and/or significance

Sections and Working Groups may use additional criteria and may assign different weights to the above criteria. Consult the specific CFP or contact the head of the Section and Working Group you want to submit to if you have questions.

Venue of the Congress

The IAMCR Madrid 2019 Congress will take place at the School of Communication of the Complutense University of Madrid, situated on the Moncloa Campus at the Avenida Complutense. It is near the city centre, with a Metro station only 5 minutes away and less than a 30 minute walk from Moncloa or the Halls of Residence area. Moncloa is a communications hub, and a well-known shopping and touristic area of the capital.

The School of Communication teaches degree courses in Journalism, AV Communication and Advertising and Public Relations. Master and doctoral degrees are also taught in Audiovisual Heritage and Multimedia Journalism and Communication (from a variety of viewpoints: socio-cultural, political, organizational, audiovisual, social, etc.). Demand for degree courses was such that the original building soon became insufficient and in 2003, a second teaching centre was added adjacent to the old one; the new building houses lecture halls for senior students, masters’ courses, offices for professors and lecturers and a large auditorium.

The School of Communication will soon become the second largest centre of the University in terms of the number of students and the largest of its type in the country. The Faculty is proud to serve the enormous demand for communication-related degrees.

Download this call for proposals as a PDF file

Consult the calls for proposals of IAMCR's 32 thematic sections and working groups