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Student Column

Posted By Camella Rising (George Mason U) and Julie Escurignan (U of Roehampton), Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Social Media for Academics: A Personal Perspective, by SECAC member Camella Rising


On Sunday 27 May I had the pleasure of co-chairing with Raul Ferrer, Karlstad U, (and with the tremendous help and participation of David Cheruiyot, Karlstad U) at a joint SECAC and YECREA Blue Sky Workshop entitled “Social media for academics: Self-promotion and career development for early-career scholars.” The intent of the workshop was to provide a forum to discuss both the opportunities and challenges associated with social media as a practical tool for career development and/or self-promotion. During the workshop, we heard diverse perspectives and uses of social media from speakers Karin Fikkers (U of Amsterdam), Veronika Karnowski (Ludwig-Maximilians-U of Munich), and Valerie Belair-Gagnon (U of Minnesota).


A key outcome from our rich discussion was that when it comes to the utility of social media for career development or self-promotion…it depends! Among the several factors mentioned, social media was described as useful (or not) depending on the specific area of communication studied, the social media platform, personal preferences, and personal goals. Having an open forum to talk about this topic made me realize that I am not alone; many of us are struggling to navigate the opportunities and challenges of social media for professional use. Even if I didn’t walk away knowing precisely what my next move should be on social media, it’s reassuring to know that there are a multitude of ways to/not to incorporate social media into my professional life. I hope that conversations on this topic as well as other practical challenges SECAC members confront will continue to be explored in future Blue Sky workshops and conversations.


I would like to thank all the participants and speakers of this Blue Sky Workshop for this rich and fruitful discussion!



News from ICA Prague 2018, by Board Member Julie Escurignan


It has been a month since ICA Annual Conference was held in Prague, and for this July newsletter, I would like to come back to a few majors points that were discussed during the Board of Directors and the SECAC Business Meeting.

The first item I would like to highlight is the creation of an Ethics Task Force, chaired by Lee Humphreys (Cornell U). The Ethics Task Force has drafted an Ethics Code for ICA and will be gathering feedback all year long in order to propose a Code of Ethics to be voted during the Washington, DC 2019 Board of Directors.

In addition, a task force on the five-authorship rule has been set up to discuss the five-authorship rule in place at ICA: should ICA keep this rule or replace it by a limit on first authorships but unlimited second authorship? And would this reduce diversity or on the contrary increase the diversity in presenters, especially in student and early career scholars presenters? The Task Force will be gathering feedback and discussing this topic all year, so please feel free to express your opinion on the matter (you can send me an email, as I am part of the task force, at: escurigj@roehampton.ac.uk).

This year again, the SECAC Business Meeting has been a great place for discussing these questions and more. Following the exchanges, the SECAC has defined five goals for the year to come:

  • Enhancing the role of Student and Early Career Division and Interest Group Representatives

  • Developing the collaboration between Representatives and the SECAC for a better representation of ICA Student and Early Career Members

  • Redefine what the expression “Early Career Scholar” covers

  • Enhancing Social Media Participation from Student and Early Career Members

  • Enhancing the representation of Global South Students and Early Career Scholars, especially through the creation of a Global South Student and Early Career Representative position at the SECAC


Finally, as the new Chair of the SECAC, I would like to thank you for making this ICA Annual Conference another success! I would also like to thank those of you who participated to the SECAC events: your involvement and voice are necessary, and to represent you the best way possible, we need to hear from you. We could not do our representative job to the Board correctly without the Divisions and Interest Groups’ Student and Early Career Representatives, so thanks to them for their amazing job and for being so present and active during the conference.

Last, but not least, I would like to extend special thanks to the outgoing Student Board Member Tamar Lazar (U of Haifa) and SECAC members David Cheruiyot and Omar Al Ghazzi (London School of Economics and Political Science) for their tremendous service over the past 2 years.


The SECAC is looking forward to working with and for you this year and to seeing you all next year in Washington DC!


Tags:  June-July 2018 

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