CFP: Journalism’s tools in a changing environment

Symposium titled “Journalism and its tools: Technical aspects of producing information” is now accepting submissions for papers. The event itself, organized by a host of French universities, will be held in Paris on the 8th and 9th of October 2015.

As the title suggests, the symposium’s focus is on the technical affordances of contemporary journalism. Submissions for the event should reflect upon the ways journalism’s tools are depicted in popular discourse; the changes said tools are subject to as a result of restructuring of newsrooms; or the effects of broadening the skill set demanded from journalists to their competence.

Any submissions should be sent by March the 15th 2015. Proposals and communications are welcome in English, French, Portuguese or Spanish. For now, no further information is available online.

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Journalism and its tools: Technical aspects of producing information

International symposium organised by GIS Journalisme, groupement des laboratoires:

CARISM (IFP – Université Paris 2)
CRAPE (CNRS – Universités de Rennes – IEP – EHESP)
ELICO (Universités de Lyon)
GRIPIC (CELSA – Université Paris Sorbonne)

Paris, 8-9 October 2015


Call for papers:

Submission deadline : 15 March 2015

There are countless media industries, journalism schools, and professional organisations, all sectors in which journalistic tools and techniques are exchanged, traded and supplied. Against a background of technocentric fantasy and technological nightmare, lasting since at least the 19th century, journalism has constantly called on equipment to capture image and sound, layout text, and accelerate the transmission of information. From the first portable camera, called the “Reporter” by Kodak, its manufacturer, to the recent RSS flows that aggregate information automatically, the links between journalism and its tools constantly call into question the profession’s identity, status, socioeconomic functioning and perceptions.

How should the relationship between the control of technical systems and the production of information be perceived? Shouldn’t information itself be considered as one of the “intellectual technologies” mentioned by the ethnologist Jack Goody?

Viewed over the long term, journalism appears to have been structured around the assertion of intellectual expertise, which has synergetic though sometimes conflictual links with the “tooled” dimension of information production. Hence the interest of questioning afresh a whole tradition of thought that has claimed a dominant role of observation and analysis, featuring the journalist as an intellectual who always sees to the core, whatever the era, words or pen.

The aim of the symposium organised by GIS Journalisme is to spur multidisciplinary responses to these questions. These responses could be structured in three main directions.

1. The place of technology in discourse on journalism: defence and illustration of equipped journalism

In this first direction, we question the role assigned to tools in all the texts, discourses, and testimonies conveying a representation of journalism. Whether in the form of fiction or legislative texts, professional charters or training programs, how are the technical competences associated with producing information defined, qualified and evaluated? Here, the approach could be contemporary or long-term, comparative or monographic. For example, attention could be given to examining recurrent prophecies predicting the dissolution of journalism in the automation of information, or to analysing the shockwaves stirred in professional mindsets by technological breakthroughs.

2. The tools of journalism, the economic and organisational stakes at the heart of adjustments in the media industry

Whereas the grouping of the media has occurred in parallel with the ad hoc development of technologies and the creation of large editorial teams whose members are paid regular salaries, the arrival of the 21st century appears to have triggered the reorganisation of production processes, atomising professional practices. Using case studies and organisational and managerial perspectives, the works expected in the second direction will shed light on the parallel evolution of editorial structures and the tools used to produce information. For example, the technical impacts of the concentration occurring in the regional press, or highlighting the share of technological autonomization in the growing number of editorial structures without employees.

3. Journalistic competences put to the test of media systems

The development of computerised media has taken much inspiration from journalistic practices: blogs, mobile image capture applications and other resources for digital publications herald new technological potential – that of making all the tasks of writing and publishing, hitherto reserved for professional journalists, accessible for all. What are the impacts of such an evolution? Does it contribute to generalising journalistic action or, conversely, characterising still further the non-technical part of producing information? Here, we expect analyses of media systems, journalistic experiences involving non-professional practices, as well as works calling into question the attendant discourses deployed by the industrial actors of the media sector.

Submission procedures

Please send the following to: [email protected]

– a summary of 1,000 words (or 6,000 characters, including spaces and punctuation), indicating the keywords and the direction intended for this communication (please do not give any indication making it possible to identify the authors or authors);
– the 1st page comprising the identity, the institution, and the email address of the author (or authors); this information will be sent to the members of the scientific committee responsible for giving an opinion on the proposals.

The summaries and communications can be presented in English, French, Portuguese and Spanish.


– the proposal (summary) must be submitted before 15 March 2015.
– response of the Scientific Committee 1 May 2015.


At the end of the symposium, a proposal will be made to organise a scientific review to compile a dossier of the best contributions.

Scientific Committee

– Rodney BENSON, New-York University (USA)
– Pablo J. BOCZKOWSKI, Northwestern University (USA)
– Etienne CANDEL, Université Paris-Sorbonne (France)
– Jean CHALABY, City University of London (United Kingdom)
– Jean CHARRON, Université Laval (Québec, Canada)
– Rogério CHRISTOFOLETTI, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (Brazil)
– Béatrice DAMIAN-GAILLARD, Université de Rennes 1 (France)
– Francisco DE ASSIS, Escola Superior de Propaganda e Marketing (Brazil)
– Salvador DE LEON, Universidad autonoma de Aguascalientes (Mexico)
– Hervé DEMAILLY, Université Paris-Sorbonne (France)
– David DOMINGO, Université libre de Bruxelles (Belgium)
– Isabelle HARE, Université de Poitiers (France)
– María Elena HERNÁNDEZ, Universidad de Guadalajara (Mexico)
– Valérie JEANNE-PERRIER, Université Paris-Sorbonne (France)
– Christine LETEINTURIER, Université Paris 2 (France)
– Jean-Baptiste LEGAVRE, Université Paris 2 (France)
– Samuel LIMA, Universidade de Brasilia (Brazil)
– Jacques MICK, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (Brazil)
– Valérie PATRIN-LECLERE, Université Paris-Sorbonne (France)
– Fabio PEREIRA, Universidade de Brasilia (Brazil)
– David PRITCHARD, University of Wisconsin (USA)
– Jean-Michel RAMPON, Institut d’études politiques de Lyon (France)
– Rémy RIEFFEL, Université Paris 2 (France)
– Denis RUELLAN, Université de Rennes 1 (France)
– Adeline WRONA, Université Paris-Sorbonne (France)


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