CfP: Westminster Papers in Communication and Culture Special Issue on Media Economics and Media Management

Call for Papers: Managing Disruptiveness As the New Normal

The whole notion of a ‘media company’ is undergoing reconceptualization. While the future of media and of media professions are being questioned, studies on media management and media business observe the practicalities of media transformations. In a changing digital realm finding the right business model is only one of many riddles to be solved by media managers who usually pay little attention to theory. On the other hand, involvement in media management makes one an active learner, considering the pace of changes. In this regard modern research on media management is doubly challenged: at first, scholarship needs to keep pace with current changes, and second, theory if it is to have tangible impact needs to be adaptable to the needs and attention spans of those in the industry.

In this issue we will focus on anything from strategic change and innovation on a par with culture alongside studies on technology, audience and leadership. However, to narrow things down, we will look at current media management practices from the angle of disruption.

A report by the McKinsey Global Institute in 2013[1] predicted that the top four of 12 technologies that would ‘transform life, business and the global economy’ in the next decade were media technologies: namely mobile internet; the automation of knowledge work; the internet of things; and the cloud, underlining the importance of academic studies that take disruption as a central concern.

Seen in the dimension of the market space sphere of global media markets, disruptiveness is relative. What is disruptive for the incumbents may be the normality for the innovators. For example what the New York Times may now be struggling to cope with is what the Huffington Post may thrive on. In the Web 2.0 and mobile era when media technology has enabled the audience to come into play as never before, this relativity has become even more complicated. With the ubiquity of innovative technology, disruptiveness may have become the “new normal” of the media industries. If so, managing disruptiveness will become the normality of media management.

This issue of WPCC examines these issues from a variety of perspectives: incumbents, innovators, and/or audiences. We also welcome proposals covering different national markets or with an international dimension.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Audiences and consumption
  • Changes to revenue models and general issues of newsroom sustainability
  • Amateurs vs. professionals: the new kinds of news providers and the multiplatform traditional media
  • Public service media management in the digital age
  • The management of creativity
  • Rebranding strategies of traditional media
  • Innovative approaches to advertising
  • Non-profit news
  • Paying for news online
  • Political economy of media concentration: incumbents v. startups

Proposal deadline: 15 January 2016 (new deadline)

Deadline for full text submission: 1 June 2016 (new deadline)

For submissions go to Submissions: or send direct to mcnichc@westminster.ac.uk


[1] Disruptive technologies: Advances that will transform life, business, and the global economy, McKinsey and Company, May 2013

Master in Journalism – ESCS (Cape Verde)

Paulo Faustino with students of the Master in Journalism‬ of the Escola Superior de Comunicação Social in Cape Verde (one of the exceptional African countries regarding media pluralism). The Master’s Degree in Journalism is one more effort and opportunity for media professionals to get qualifications, including organization and management for media companies.

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Book Release: The Business of Media

Mónica Herrero & Steve Wildman (Co-editors), The Business of Media: Changes and Challenges, IMMAA,
 Lisbon: MediaXXI/Formalpress, 2015.
To buy it

Advancement of the state of scholarship on media management is a three-pronged process. The body of knowledge on which media executives and managers can draw grows as: (1) core concepts and analytical frameworks are refined, augmented and occasionally supplemented or replaced by new ideas that better explain the roles of media in their larger economic and societal contexts; (2) Rigorous empirical analysis probes the limitations of current understanding and raises new questions; and (3) Grounded case studies extract knowledge through theoretically informed observation of situations and processes that are too complex and multi-faceted for more tightly controlled statistical analyses but still are too rich in their potential to contribute to knowledge to ignore.

IMMAA-2015 conference at the Faculty of Journalism, MSU

The traditional academic conference ”Moscow Readings” which takes place at the Faculty of Journalism, MSU for the seventh time already, was organized this year jointly with IMMAA organization (International Media Management Academic Association). IMMAA is an international academic platform, which unites researchers of media economics and media management from different parts of the world.

During the two days of the conference (September 17 and 18, 2015) scholars from more than fifteen countries (Portugal, Germany, France, Austria, China, Republic of Korea and many others) discussed the state of global and national media markets. The agenda included the issues of media entrepreneurship in the context of mediatization, restructing of the advertising market, developing of public media and changes of media governance.

The conference comprised several plenary meetings, round tables, workshop, poster session, and special sessions in both English and Russian languages. During the meeting devoted to BRICS countries the researchers compared the media systems of this states with some traditional Western models. The open discussion about the development of social media also appeared to be productive. The representatives of media companies and scholars from all around the world tried to understand the place of new media in the field mass communications, and discuss the effects of new media on media business and media consumption. During poster session young researchers and PhD students presented the results of their research work and shared their experience with other participants. Interviews with IMMAA-2015 participants can be viewed here.

Closing the conference, IMMAA’s chairman Prof. Paulo Faustino extended thanks to the Faculty of Journalism. The Dean, Prof. Elena Vartanova mentioned that the conference has become an important event for Russian media studies, which gives Russian and foreign scholars an opportunity to discuss problems of mass communications and journalism in different parts of the world.