ADM+S Research Featured at the 74th Annual International Communication Association Conference

Author Natalie Campbell
Date 1 July 2024

The 74th Annual International Communication Association (ICA) conference was held on the Gold Coast in Queensland from 20-24 June, where ADM+S members from across Australia showcased their research around the 2024 theme of ‘Communication and Global Human Rights’.

The ICA conference is the premier annual event for scholars and professionals in the field of communication, where hundreds of research papers are presented to an average attendance of over 2,000 academics.

The ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society held a strong presence throughout the program. 

ADM+S Associate Director Distinguished Professor Jean Burgess was invited to deliver the annual ICA Steve Jones lecture. Prof Burgess’ talk, titled ‘Why the GenAI Moment Needs Communication and Media Studies’, covered the widespread integration of artificial intelligence (AI) tools in everyday apps and services, highlighting the importance of inclusivity, accessibility, transparency, and explainability.

“It was wonderful, if intimidating, to have such a prestigious opportunity and such a large platform,” said Prof Burgess.

“I used the occasion to share my thoughts on how our field might respond to and help shape the unfolding configurations of GenAI in our communication and media environment, and how the various projects, Centres and labs I’m involved in are beginning to do so.

“I was really touched to have so many colleagues from the QUT Digital Media Research Centre and ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society come along in support. I couldn’t be prouder to be a member of this community.”

ICA Awards

ADM+S Affiliate Dr T.J. Thomson was awarded a Top Faculty Paper in the Journalism Studies division for his paper ‘Generative Visual AI in Newsrooms: Challenges, Opportunities, Perceptions, and Policies’ co-authored by Assoc Prof Ryan Thomas and Phoebe Matich.

The paper explores how photo editors perceive and/or use generative visual AI in their editorial operations and outlines the challenges and opportunities they see for the technology.

Additionally, Ehsan Dehgan, Dominique Carlon, Ashwin Nagappa and Kateryna Kasianenko also received a Top Paper award in the Intergroup Communication division for their paper ‘A Culture War without a Battlefront: Sedimented Polarisation across Political Subreddits’ which analysed 16 years’ worth of submissions across 11 political subreddits.

ICA Presentations

The following ICA sessions featured ADM+S researchers. To view all speakers and session abstracts, see the 2024 ICA program.

  • Aging with Technology: Multipe Interfaces for Social Connections
    ADM+S presenter: Anthony McCosker (chair)
  • Business and Pleasure: Queer Perspectives on Work, Health and Desire
    ADM+S presenters: Kathy Albury and Zahra Stardust (From Commodified Pleasures to Improvisational Desires: Countersexual Uses and Experiences of Sextech by LGBTQ+ People)
  • Communication and Knowledge in an Age of AI Philosophy
    ADM+S presentes: Mark Andrejevic (Automated Parasociality: From Personalization to Personification)
  • Covering the Climate Crisis
    ADM+S presenter: Michelle Riedlinger (Medialization Works Both Ways: Describing the Scientization of Journalism)
  • Critical Perspectives on Health and Popular Media
    ADM+S presenter: Wenqi Tan (Representations of Cyborgs and Disability in the Worlds of Cyberpunk 2077 and Citizen Sleeper)
  • Cultural Production and Generative Artificial Intelligence: A Matchpoint for Creativity
    ADM+S presenter: Jonathon Hutchinson (chair/ The Match Point for Creative Work: Generative AI in China’s Live E-Commerce Industry)
  • Datafication: Ethical, Political, and Cultural Questions Philosophy
    ADM+S presenter: Mark Andrejevic (chair)
  • Disability Rights are Human Rights: Disability Research Across Communication Studies
    ADM+S presenter: Gerard Goggin (chair)
  • Disability Rights, Communications and Technology
    ADM+S presenters: Gerard Goggin (chair), Alexa Scarlata (Disability Rights, Media Accessibility and Smart TVs) and Wenqi Tan (Interrogating the Autonomous Dream: An Instrumentalization Theory Approach to Examining the Inclusion of People with Ambulatory Disabilities in Singapore’s Autonomous Public Transport Development)
  • Disability Rights, Social Justice and Activism
    ADM+S presenter: Gerard Goggin (chair)
  • Exploring New Strategies, Methods and Technologies to Track and Counter Mis- /Disinformation
    ADM+S presenters: Daniel Angus, Ashwin Nagappa, Axel Bruns, Nadia Jude (“What Else Are They Talking About?”: A Large-Scale Longitudinal Analysis of Misinformation Super-Spreader Communities on Facebook), and Damiano Spina (Human-AI Cooperation for Tackling Misinformation).
  • Follow the Money: Markets and Monetization in Media Industries
    ADM+S presenter: Ramon Lobato (chair)
  • Generating Trust through Generative AI?
    ADM+S presenters: Ned Watt, Silvia Montana-Nino and Michelle Riedlinger (Generative AI and Fact Checking in the Southern Hemisphere: Insights from a Regional Comparison of Meta-Affiliated Fact Checkers)
  • Global Media Witnessing and the Struggle for Human Rights
    ADM+S presenter: Michael Richardson (Witnessing Aftermaths)
  • High-Tech Journalism
    ADM+S presenter: Wiebke Loosen (From Innovation Labs to Innovation Systems in Public-Service Media)
  • Histories and Archaeologies of Digitization
    ADM+S presenter: Gerard Goggin (chair)
  • Journalism: Theories and Paradigms
    ADM+S presenters: Silvia Montana-Nino, Michelle Riedlinger and Ned Watt (Understanding Contemporary Verification Cultures: Informing a Theory of Institutionalized Fact-Checking Values in Times of News Platformization)
  • Living in a Datafied Society: Surveillance, Algorithms, and the Transformation of Everyday Materiality in China
    ADM+S presenter: Haiqing Yu (discussant) 
  • NZCA – Australia’s Media and Communication Ecology and the 2023 Voice Referendum
    ADM+S presenters: Timothy Graham and Bronwyn Carlson (panel participants)
  • Observing the Cultural Practices of TikTokers in Views of Platform Algorithm and Global Human Rights
    ADM+S presenter: Haiqing Yu (Claiming Identity and Nationalism on TikTok: A Case Study of Rohingya Digital Diaspora)
  • Online Deliberation, and Media in Civic Engagement
    ADM+S presenters: Lucinda Nelson (Depp v Heard: Cancel Culture and Online Discourses about Violence against Women)
  • Polarization and Partisanship
    ADM+S Presenter: Axel Bruns (Polarised Media Framing of Climate Protests: A Comparative Mixed-Methods Analysis of Australia and Germany)
  • Prompting Progress or Generating Problems? AI in News Construction Processes
    ADM+S presenters: Axel Bruns (chair), T.J. Thomson (Generative Visual AI in Newsrooms: Challenges, Opportunities, Perceptions, and Policies)
  • Questions and Research Directions in Communication Studies and Global Human Rights, ICA Closing Keynote
    ADM+S presenter: Gerard Goggin (panelist)
  • Storytelling on Steroids? Video and Audio Technologies for Journalism
    ADM+S presenter: T.J. Thomson (Visual News and Journalistic Practice in Urban and Regional Areas: A Comparative Australian- Chinese Perspective)
  • Streaming Diversity? On and Off-Screen Diversity in an Era of Automated Media Culture
    ADM+S presenters: Kylie Pappalardo (Policy and Regulatory Challenges for Improving Representation Diversity on Our Screens), Alexa Scarlata (Streaming Women: Gendering SVOD Curation from Netflix to Passionflix), and Verity Trott (Defining and Doing Diversity)
  • The CAP Roundtable on 30 Years of the Chinese Internet and Beyond
    ADM+S presenter: Haiqing Yu (participant)
  • The Possibilities and Perils of Generating News with Generative AI
    ADM+S presenters: Ned Watt and Michelle Riedlinger (The Fact Checkers’ “Helper”: Fact-Checking Imaginaries for Generative AI Technologies)
  • The Very Picture of Health: Images and Well-Being
    ADM+S presenter: T.J. Thomson (chair)
  • Top Papers in Media Industry Studies
    ADM+S presenters: Ramon Lobato and Alexa Scarlata (Smart TV Users and Interfaces: Who’s in Control?)
  • Understanding Laws and Regulations for Children’s Media Use
    ADM+S presenter: Jonathon Hutchinson (Social Digital Dilemmas: Young People’s and Parents’ Negotiation of Emerging Online Safety Issues)
  • ICA24 Sunday Fellows’ Session
    ADM+S presenter: Jean Burgess (panelist)

Lastly, following the recent launch of the Australian Internet Observatory, Program Director and ADM+S research Fellow Amanda Lawrence spoke about the new initiative in a panel organised and chaired by ADM+S Chief Investigator Prof Daniel Angus, titled ‘Supporting the Stack: Considerations in the Ongoing Development, Deployment and Maintenance of Computational Communication Research Infrastructure’.

This panel focussed on the importance of larger scale software infrastructure for research, and also featured ADM+S members Dr Laura Vodden, Dr Abdul Karim Obeid, Dr Elizabeth Alpert, alongside Jane Tan (QUT) and international colleagues Megan Brown, Dr Josephine Lukito, and Jason Greenfield (New York U).

The significant contributions made by ADM+S researchers at ICA 2024 exemplified the Association and ADM+S’ shared commitment to advancing theoretical frameworks and strategies for communication studies.

Learn more about the International Communication Association.