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2019 ICA Awards

Posted By Administration, Tuesday, July 2, 2019

The 69th Annual ICA Conference in Washington D.C. provided the Association and its members with an opportunity to celebrate excellence in the field by granting various awards. Congratulations to all the winners and sincere gratitude to all the members of the various ICA awards committees, who do tremendous work to select each of these recipients.

The 2019 ICA Fellows Book Award was awarded to Power without responsibility: Press, broadcasting and the internet in Britain (8th ed.). Routledge, by James Curran and Jean Seaton. The 2019 recipient, Power Without Responsibility by James Curran and Jean Seaton, was first published in 1981 (nearly 40 years ago), and has become the gold standard for serious historic and rigorous analyses of the relationship between journalism and society in the evolution of media studies. In its 8th edition, it has sold over 90,000 copies, has been translated into 6 languages, and remains replete with important analytical insights from its early work on the British press to current critical analyses of digital and social media. As a book that has stood the test of time, it is widely interdisciplinary, international in reach, and has shaped the landscape of both scholarship and public deliberations.

(Committee: Chair: Linda Putnam, Members: Jan Radway, John Hartley, Sharon Dunwoody, Liz Bird)

The 2019 Outstanding Book Award went to Ralina L. Joseph, U of Washington for her book Postracial resistance: Black women, media, and the uses of strategic ambiguity, published by NYU Press.  From the committee: “This is a brilliant analysis of postracial performativity in terms of strategic ambiguity. Through impeccable theorization and innovative methods, Joseph traces how Black women perform and negotiate race. Interviews with media writers, producers, and executives; audience ethnographies of young women viewers; and deep textual readings inform Joseph’s account, as she traces and presents the black perspective towards how people negotiate their identities in the process of watching. Ralina Joseph eloquently captures both a political sensibility and a mood that defines the contemporary moment. We have not seen such a deep analysis of Black women’s multiple relationships with media texts since Jacqueline Bobo’s seminal work on Black Women as Cultural Readers, and we consider this book worthy of similar forms of recognition and impact. The book’s relevance reaches beyond our field into neighboring disciplines and renders an invaluable contribution to our understanding of media

representations of class, gender, and race. Ralina Joseph has gifted our discipline with a work that will define, advance, and reinvent how we examine the question of race at this critical juncture.

(Committee: Chair: Zizi Papacharissi,  Members: Lilie Chouliaraki, John Erni, Vicky Mayer)

The 2019 Applied/Public Policy Research Award was given to May O. Lwin, Nanyang Technological U. As the committee reports, “Dr. Lwin led a team addressing dengue prevention in Sri Lanka. She successfully mobilized the use of social media to combat this disease, in the process getting the attention of local and global media. This in turn led to the Skoll Global Threats Fund – of social entrepreneurship fame – to invite her to continue and deepen the research. Her team developed the “Mo-Buzz” prototype tool to surveille and provide evidence of the disease vector, building on mobile phone and social media use in the country. The app’s data-gathering ability helped public health authorities to make faster, more accurate decisions about where to focus their attention.” 

(Committee: Chair: Sharon Strover,  Members: Idit Manosevitch, Aaron Shaw, Jonathan Corpus Ong, Melanie Wakefield)


The Outstanding Article Award of 2019 was awarded to: Joelle M. Cruz, U of Colorado-Boulder, for the article Invisibility and visibility in alternative organizing: A communicative and cultural model. Published in Management Communication Quarterly, 31, 614-639.

From the committee: “Dr. Cruz conducted an ethnographic study of a grassroots organization of market women in post-conflict Liberia, Africa. This grounded theory project draws on months of fieldwork for which Cruz even had to learn a new dialect. Using culture as the central anchor, she traces actual organizing practices that illustrate how organizing happens along shifting modalities of visibility and invisibility. Her results successfully challenge Western assumptions about communication practices in organizations, especially the often unquestioned preference for transparency. The article promises to be influential in the long term because of its fundamental extension of the notion of organizations as communication processes and products. Along the way, the study demonstrates impressively what "deWesternization" of communication research as a whole can look like.” 

(Committee: Chair: Elfriede Fursich, Members:Eike Rinke, Harsh Taneja, Leslie Steeves, Angharad Valdivia)

The 2019 Young Scholar Award was awarded to: Leticia Bode, Georgetown U.

The committee was impressed with the depth and breadth reflected in the scholarship of Associate Professor Leticia Bode. An award-winning researcher, Bode explores an area of communication, digital media, and political participation, that has significant theoretical and societal impact. Having been

recognized with a stellar collection of awards, including the Walter Lippman Best Published Article in Political Communication Award (2016) and the Lillian Lodge Kopenhaver Fellowship from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (2015), Bode’s scholarship is at the forefront of theorizing the role of new communication technologies in politics and society. In the words of her nominator, Natalie Stroud, “The work is even more impressive because it changed practices. I have been to several internal meetings at Facebook where they directly cite this research as informing the platform’s change to using related articles to correct misinformation. To be at this stage in Dr. Bode’s career and have published research that not only is theoretically important, but that also influenced one of the most important social media platforms in the world, is impressive.” The committee agreed.

(Committee: Chair: Mohan Dutta, Members: Amy Nathanson, Frank Esser, Craig Scott, Isabel Molina- Guzman)

The 2019 ICA Aubrey Fisher Mentorship Award is awarded to: Barbie Zelizer, U of Pennsylvania.  From the committee: “The influence of Barbie’s mentorship can be seen in all aspects of the discipline and has reach throughout the world. Her former students and mentees consistently go on to do great things and are recognized for their work, including in many, many awards for their papers and their books, and in their roles in leadership positions throughout the field. She sets high standards, yet she simultaneously guides her students and encourages them to cultivate their own voice and pursue

their passions. Her mentorship includes not only her students; we feel her influence throughout the entire discipline, as she has served in a multitude of leadership positions herself, including as former president

of ICA. Her nomination letters characterize her as thorough, responsive, inspiring, supportive, and exceptional. Her students characterize themselves as grateful, as privileged to have worked with her, and, indeed, as blessed to have been the recipient of her guidance. As one of her letters stated, "…there is such a thing as a Zelizer student, in the same way that there was a Schramm student or a Carey student or a Katz student. Like these others, a Zelizer student is not so much characterized by the imitation of one's mentor as by a unique voice participating in a shared conversation." We celebrate

Barbie’s role in enriching the lives of her students and of the discipline.” 

(Committee: Chair: Mary Beth Oliver, Members: Oliver Quiring, Jessica Taylor Piotrowski, Jennifer Bartlett, Dietram Scheufele)

The 2019 Steven H. Chaffee Career Achievement Award, which honors a scholar for a sustained contribution to theoretical development or empirical research related to communication studies over an extended period, was granted to Michael D. Slater, The Ohio State U. 


From the committee: “Michael D. Slater is the ideal candidate for the Steven H. Chaffee Career Achievement Award. He has produced truly exceptional scholarship, both in quantitative and qualitative terms, much of which is considered ground-breaking and paradigm-shifting. His work has advanced the field in terms of theoretical development, most notably through the extended elaboration likelihood model, reinforcing spiral  model, and the concept of narrative persuasion. In addition, he has spearheaded methodological advancement in the discipline among others but not limited to the area of advanced methods of longitudinal data analysis. Dr. Slater’s scholarship has significantly influenced core areas of the field (such as persuasion, media psychology, mass communication, health communication), and it has influenced communication scholarship across sub-disciplinary boundaries. Overall, he has made a sustained contribution to communication scholarship over almost 30 years, and his work has been a source of inspiration for multiple generations of scholars. 

(Committee: Chair: Thomas Hanitzsch, Members: Natalie Stroud, Sonia Livingstone, Radha Hegde, Sebastian Valenzuela)  

Tags:  June-July 2019 

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