Emerging Scholars Network - Call for Papers 2020

The call for papers below is an extraordinary reopening of the original Beijing call for papers for authors who did not submit to the Beijing conference but want their work considered for Tampere. 

The  Emerging Scholars Network (ESN) of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) invites the submission of abstracts of papers and proposals for panels for the 2020 Congress of the Association, which will be held from 12 to 16 July, 2020 at Tampere University in Tampere. Submissions for this extraordinary reopening will be accepted from Monday 17 February, 2020 until Monday 2 March 2020 at 23:59 UTC

IAMCR conferences address many diverse topics defined by our 33 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 in plenary sessions and in some of the sessions of the sections and working groups. The general conference theme for 2020 is “Reimagining the Digital Future: Building Inclusiveness, Respect and Reciprocity”.

See the IAMCR 2020 general call for proposals.   

We invite you to submit abstracts (250-300 words) of your research papers. We welcome submissions on a variety of topics pertinent to communication and media studies research. We also encourage submissions that address this year’s conference theme Reimagining the Digital Future: Building Inclusiveness, Respect and Reciprocity. For more information on this year’s conference theme, please refer to the general conference CFP. This year’s theme aims to respond to challenges stemming from tremendous changes created from globalization in culture, the economy, and communication. These challenges include the decline of quality in national and international communication flows, the fragmentation of global communication, and an accelerating environmental crisis. For emerging scholars, these issues pose a particular challenge, as they reshape the field we are entering, making it equally urgent that research maps the development and deployment of communication technology as well as addresses the values and practices that could build a more inclusive digital future. What do emerging perspectives contribute to creating a shared digital future? How do emerging understandings of the divisions in the digital space contribute to the creation of feasible agendas for a more inclusive digital future?

For the 2020 conference, the Emerging Scholars Network invites papers that relate to the general theme of the conference, and particularly those that reflect the section’s interest in the perspectives of emerging scholars, the creation and maintenance of international communication, and the promotion of universal values such as peace, equality, and respect.

This year, ESN will host 4 co-sponsored sessions:

  • A Joint ESN-Communication Policy & Technology (CPT) session welcomes submissions related to communication policy and technology. The Communication Policy & Technology (CP&T) Section focuses on the role and meaning of media and communication technologies, both analogue and digital, in past, current and future societies, and encourages a critical focus on the role of policy (broadly defined) in these developments.

  • A Joint session with Crisis, Security and Conflict Communication (CRI) working group welcomes submissions related to communication in at-risk areas, or related to the mediation of political and economic crisis and 'scandals', wars and terrorism, disasters, catastrophes and risks, combining global and local perspectives.

  • A Joint session with the Environment, Science and Risk Communication (ESR) working group welcomes submissions related to the communications of environmental and scientific issues. In line with IAMCR 2020’s general theme “Reimagining the Digital Future: Building Inclusiveness, Respect and Reciprocity”, this joint session invites submissions that explores the extent to which the current global communication and technological landscapes have facilitated the respect for diversity and shared values in the context of the global climate crisis.

  • A Joint session with the International Communication (INC) section welcomes submissions related to the relationship between media and international issues, including, but not limited to: the role of media in foreign policy-making, media-citizen dynamics in different continents, comparative media analysis, digital divide, the geopolitics of global ICTs, and the challenges for media in the era of misinformation. This joint session will also collaborate with the journal Global Media and China for a possible special issue out of high-quality submissions in 2020.

Emerging scholars who are interested in the above sessions are welcome to submit their research. Individual submissions for these joint sessions should be submitted to the ESN section, including CPT/ESN, CRI/ ESN, ESR/ESN, or INC/ESN in the title field.​

This year ESN also launches its Best Paper Award! If your abstract is accepted, you can apply to this award by contacting ESN chairs. Your papers will be evaluated by the jury, constituted from IAMCR’s senior scholars, heads of sections and other experienced researchers.

How to submit your abstract

Abstracts should be between 300 and 500 words. All abstracts must be submitted at https://iamcr2020.exordo.com. Abstracts sent by email will not be accepted.

It is expected that authors 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. No more than one (1) abstract can be submitted to any section or working group. 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. Any such submissions will be deemed to be in breach of the conference guidelines and will be rejected. Authors submitting them risk being removed entirely from the conference programme.

The deadline to submit abstracts is 23:59 GMT on 2 March 2020

See important dates and deadlines to keep in mind

The Emerging Scholars Network also welcomes abstracts for video presentations, as part of an initiative to allow for remote participation. If you wish to submit an abstract for a video presentation, please carefully read the call for video presentations, and follow the procedures explained there.

Upon submission of an abstract, you will be asked to confirm that your submission is original and that it has not been previously published in the form presented. You will also be given an opportunity to declare if your submission is currently before another conference for consideration.

Prior to the conference, each presenter is required to upload a completed paper. Discussant feedback has a special place in ESN and is often provided by the Chairs of other sections or working groups that ESN members may wish to join. Therefore, a timely submission of the full paper ensures comments and questions by esteemed senior scholars in the field.

The ESN welcomes works-in-progress. Please state that it is a work in progress in your abstract. Please bear in mind, however, that presenters are expected to bring to the conference work that has reached a high degree of development.

Conference registration will be open in March 2020. Please make sure to inform ESN co-chairs if you are unable to present your paper at the conference as soon as possible. Failure to do so disrupts the flow of the conference and is disrespectful to fellow presenters. It may also result in a suspension to present at the following IAMCR conference.


We strive to be as inclusive as possible of the ESN's official languages (English, Spanish, and French). We do ask that members correspond with the Chairs in either English or French, whenever possible.

  • Language for abstracts: English is preferred because we have a limited number of reviewers who can evaluate abstracts in other languages. However, we will accept abstracts in all three of IAMCR's official languages.

  • Language for presentations: English is preferred if possible, but we strive to be as inclusive as possible. We request -- but do not require -- that those presenting in a language other than English consider providing accompanying slides in English to help facilitate participation by non-speakers.

About the Emerging Scholars’ Network

The ESN is a section dedicated to the work and careers of emerging scholars in the field of media and communication studies. Therefore, we especially look for works in progress from graduate students and new university instructors/professors who are interested in substantial feedback and comments intended to advance their projects. Visit the ESN webpage.

The ESN organizes emerging scholar panels and joint sessions with other sections. Our emerging scholar panels provide a comfortable environment for the presentation of theses and works in progress, where emerging scholars can receive feedback from colleagues also at the beginning of their careers and from senior scholars who act as respondents to individual papers.

In line with the purpose of our section, the ESN also organizes panels and special sessions about issues affecting emerging scholars, such as:

  • Publishing research results;
  • Mentoring and the Student-mentor relationship;
  • Academic work and academic jobs;
  • Neoliberalism in the academy;
  • Innovative research methodologies;
  • Language barriers in academia.

These panels often feature conversations between senior scholars, emerging scholars, and/or practitioners of media and communication professions.

Further announcements on panels and events on such topics, and practical information on the ESN mentorship programme, will follow over the coming months. 

For further information, please consult the other sections of this website, or contact the Local Organizing Committee by email: tampere2020 [at] iamcr.org or the heads of the Emerging Scholars Network Section:

Co-Chair: Ksenia Ermoshina (ksenia.ermoshina [at] cnrs.fr)
Co-Chair: Sibo Chen (sibo.chen [at] ryerson.ca)
Vice chair: Steph Hill (steph.hill [at] ryerson.ca)