Call for Candidates - S&WG Head elections 2021

Audience Section

The Audience Section (AUD) will be holding online elections for two co-Chair and three Vice-chair positions, for the term 2021 - 2025.

The elections will be held online from 16 June until 14 September using the SurveyMonkey platform. Individual members and representatives of institutional members who are also registered as members of the AUD Section are eligible to stand for a position and to vote.

Interested candidates must send their name, institutional position, a statement of no more than 500 words and a photograph to with a copy to the AUD Section’s current officers, Peter Lunt (, Annette Hill (, Miguel Vicente ( and Asta Zelenkauskaite (, no later than 16 May.

All candidates must be current members of IAMCR, and of the AUD section. To verify if you are a member of the AUD section, log in to your account and click on "My Sections and Working Groups".

You can find the election rules at:

Read about the Audience Section


For Co-Chair:

For Vice-chair:


Miguel Vicente (Universidad de Valladolid, Spain)

My name is Miguel Vicente-Mariño and I am an Associate Professor at the Universidad de Valladolid (Spain). I have been acting as Department Head of Sociology and Social Work since 2015 and as the coordinator of the Research Group in Applied Social Sciences since 2013 in my university. My research interests are focused on the intersection between Media and Sociology, identifying audiences as my main topic of interest.

I have been an IAMCR member since 2006, after attending my first conference in Cairo. Since then, I have been present in all annual conferences, except 2011 and 2013 due to family commitments. Since Stockholm 2008 I have presented papers in the Audience section, taking different roles in our conferences, and deeply enjoying them all.

After being elected in Dublin 2013, I completed an insightful experience working with my section colleagues -namely Peter Lunt, Toshie Takahashi, Asta Zelenkauskaite and Annette Hill-. During the last eight years serving as part of the Audience section’s head team, I was involved in the following actions:

  • Launching and moderating the IAMCR Audience Research Facebook Group since 2013 (, currently reaching up to more than 550 members. 
  • Planning and running the IAMCR Annual Conferences from 2014 until 2021, being actively present in all of them.
  • Co-editing with Peter Lunt the special issue “From Spectators to Users: Exploring the Ongoing Transformation of Media Audiences” published in Tripodos in 2015 ( 
  • Being a member of the Local Organizing Committee of the 2019 IAMCR Conference in Madrid, chairing on the plenary sessions.
  • Organizing the 2019 IAMCR Postconference on Mobile Socialities, in Segovia (Spain)

I currently hold a good knowledge about the internal structure of the association and I think that this experience could be positive for our section in the upcoming term. Thinking about this new period, and acting together with Asta Zelenkauskaite as section’s co-chairs, we would like to keep working on strengthening the field of Audience Studies, by means of global projects reaching all continents and opening new research publication options for our memberships, both as handbooks and as journals’ special issues. 

Miguel Vicente-Mariño

Asta Zelenkauskaite (Drexel University, USA)

I am an associate professor of Communication at Drexel University, based in Philadelphia, USA. My most recent projects focus on online spaces through the lenses of automated forces and inauthentic contributions and the ways they shape publics and audiences. The scholarly areas of expertise that I bring include interactivity and online audience analysis broadly construed, comprising of digital audiences and users. In my work I employ cross-cultural approaches complemented by sociotechnical construction of social media. Methodologically, I embrace mixed method approaches. It is my pleasure to apply for IAMCR Audience section’s co-chair position. I have been part of IAMCR for about a decade and in the past term served as a vice co-chair-elect along with Miguel Vicente-Mariño and with co-chairs Peter Lunt and Annette Hill. During the term serving as a vice co-chair, I had a pleasure to contribute to the section and bridge its relationship with IAMCR. In addition to the annual conference logistics management, I have been coordinating Audience section’s work dissemination through social media.

I am applying for the co-chair’s position to continue fostering the sense of a global scholarly community in our section. Furthermore, I am committed to cultivate an inclusive international vision of audience section. My goals are to continue working on serving the section’s needs by representing our section with IAMCR leadership. One of the areas I am particularly interested in is focusing on maintaining member involvement in the section throughout the year, beyond the conference time, given the past years’ reality that transformed the conference in digital-only formats. One of the aspects that I aim at achieving is creating a framework of maintaining an ad hoc evergreen reviewer lists for the past and present members as ways of enhancing the value of the membership and expanding discussions on new ways in which our section can promote and disseminate work of our members outside of the conference.

Asta Zelenkauskaite

Nissim Katz (Kinneret Academic College, Israel)

My name is Dr. Nissim Katz. I am a faculty member and senior lecturer of communication department at Kinneret Academic College on the Sea of Galilee. My research interests are “media and social change” and “media and audiences”, specifically audiences such as national and ethnic minorities.

I am member of IAMCR for many years and participated and presented my articles in AUD section for 5 times. Also, I was twice a chairman of sessions in AUD section. I appreciate very much the IAMCR organization and especially the AUD section.  

In Israel I am a board member of Israel Communication Association. In my membership I am helping to organize the annual conferences.  Also, I am a financial critic member of the Israel Communication Association. 

In addition, I was the founder of “Junior Faculty forum” of Israel Communication Association and the first chair of “Junior Faculty Forum” in Israel. During my Ph.D. studies I founded the “Junior Faculty Forum” in order to build a community of young scholars and researchers to assist them academically and mentally.

In order to do so, I gathered all the Ph.D. communication students in all universities across Israel. I started the forum with 20 people and today this community numbers over 200 people. In this forum, I initiated various academic workshops to help students during their Ph.D. degree and also created a supportive community that students share experiences, obstacles, methods and helping each other. I believe I can bring my abilities in creating academic community to the AUD section and assist the chairman to enhance his goals in advancing AUD section academically, organizationally and numerally. I am also the founder and prose editor of “Yekum Tarbut” (Culture Universe), Online Arena, one of the biggest website in Israel for culture content. 

To conclude, I will be more than happy to contribute my skills to the AUD section. I believe I have the organization skills and human skills to be an excellent vice-chair. For me it will a great opportunity to work with the best researchers and have an experience in worldwide organization.

Thank you, 

Dr. Nissim Katz

María T. Soto-Sanfiel (National University of Singapore)

My name is María T. Soto-Sanfiel. My family and friends call me Maite. Please, call me Maite. I am an Associate Professor at the Department of Communications and New Media and Principal Researcher at the Center for Trusted Internet and Community at the National University of Singapore.

I have been participating regularly in the activities of the IAMCR audience sections for quite some time now. Indeed, since the Barcelona conference in 1988, I have tried to present my research every year at our annual meeting and cooperate as chair, discussant, or organizer of the different slots. I now believe it is time for me to step forward and collaborate with the section through a more formal service role. Hence, I would like to present my candidature for the vice-chair post of the audience section for the next period. I hope to get your support.

As vice-chair, I will continue promoting the wide variety of perspectives and academic interests that characterizes IAMCR and our section. I believe we must keep working on attracting the highest quality audience research while genuinely reflecting international diversity. Our section must impulse the dialogue between communication researchers from all continents and career stages in a very active manner. As a South American born and raised scholar, who has developed all her academic career in Europe and works in Asia, I strongly believe that the cultural diversity together with the social compromise and the fresh approach of the scholars who participate of the IAMCR audience section are not only our distinctive advantage but a promise of inspiration, academic freedom, and intellectual enrichment. I would be very honored to forcefully work for making our section a nurturing academic forum filled with creative an innovative ideas and joint projects, and a warm house for the encounter of all of us.

Stay safe and well.

Kind regards,

María T. Soto-Sanfiel
PhD in Audiovisual Communication
National University of Singapore

Rafal Zaborowski (King’s College London, United Kingdom)

My name is Rafal Zaborowski and I am Lecturer in Digital Culture at King’s College London. In my research I look at the intersections of media audiences, texts and producers (details in links below), but I identify first and foremost as an audience researcher, with the IAMCR Audience Section (AUD) section as my intellectual home.

I have been a member of IAMCR Audience Section since Istanbul 2011 where I presented my first paper on a major media conference. I remember well the stress of presenting early research ideas to a wider audience – and I remember well the relief that came with encouraging words and insightful feedback from AUD members, mentors and peers. Since then, I have presented my research numerous times in the Audience Section and have been involved in various AUD activities, from reviewing papers and chairing conference panels to participating in and minuting section meetings.  

As Vice-Chair, firstly, I would like to ensure the AUD experience is as positive and stimulating for every member as it has been for me. Academic conferences are in a transition period, and even with face-to-face interaction in sight, we need to think about old and new ways of intellectual exchange, allowing global voices fair standing and participation. 

Secondly, there is more room for activity and collaboration in-between conferences. IAMCR Audience section has always been a hub of diverse ideas and rich debates not always finding their way into major communication journals. Working with Co-chairs and the Vice-chair on more audience projects and publication outlets, I would like to open up more opportunities for dissemination to enrich our (possibly more relevant than ever before) field.

Rafal Zaborowski
Google scholar:
Twitter: @myredtowel