CFP Ethnic Media in the Digital Era

Call for Manuscripts for Co-Edited Volume on Ethnic Media in the Digital Era

The ethnic media sector is transforming and expanding in the digital era. It is a sector in the media industry that has seen considerable growth in the past decade, while many mainstream, legacy media have struggled to survive or ceased to exist. Ethnic media have gained more visibility among not only the larger media industry’s stakeholders (including marketing and advertising professionals) but also policymakers. This has been especially true in the U.S., but also in Canada, Australia, and across the European Union.

A confluence of factors is transforming and expanding this sector, including immigration generation shifts among some of the largest ethnic populations in immigrant-receiving countries, the increasing visibility of hybrid cultural, racial, and ethnic identities, the seemingly constant emergence of new media technologies, and the global political economy of media industries. New and emerging media projects are constantly adding diversity to the ethnic media sector, and simultaneously challenging established knowledge and expectations around what ethnic media are and what they look like, what roles they perform in the lives of their audiences, what the motivations of their producers are, what their relationship is with mainstream media, and what challenges they face as they strive to become sustainable operations in the digital era.

The Internet has challenged, and in many ways fundamentally changed, the way that media interact with their audiences, the modes of media production and competition, as well as established business models. Mainstream media have tried and tested a variety of approaches to effectively respond to these challenges and changes, with varying levels of success. Their successes and failures have and continue to be documented in academic and trade publications.

In contrast, we know less about ethnic media. For several years, academics and professionals involved in ethnic media have speculated that ethnic media are lagging behind mainstream media with respect to adoption of the Internet and the use of related technologies to produce and distribute content, communicate with their audiences, and develop new revenue streams. Some have argued that this is because ethnic media organizations tend to be smaller, local, and often non-profit entities, thereby lacking the technological know-how and the human and financial resources necessary to create and maintain online content. From a different perspective, others suggest that ethnic media may be protected from the challenges created by the Internet (e.g., cannibalization of offline content, new sources of competition) because, among other reasons, they are well-positioned in niche markets to provide valuable content, for which other media (traditional and new) cannot provide substitutes.

Another source of innovation and change in the ethnic media sector is the increasing participation of younger generations in media production, which is facilitated, at least partially, by new communication technologies. Although many ethnic media are founded by and for first-generation immigrants, an increasingly larger number of youth who adopt hyphenated and hybrid identities are creating a variety of online communicative spaces of their own such as Angry Asian Man and Racialicious (U.S.) and Schema Magazine (Canada). However, there is scant research on these new media projects.

To begin to address the aforementioned major gaps in the literature, an in-depth examination of continuities and changes in the ethnic media landscape around the globe in the digital era is necessary.

For this edited volume, the co-editors welcome manuscripts on an array of topics, such as:
-Digital divides and ethnic media
-Digital diasporas or cyber ethnic communities
-The impact of the digital revolution in the everyday lives of ethnic media audiences
-Youth, cultural/racial/ethnic hybridity, and media consumption and production
-Journalism, professional identity, and ethnic media producers
-Media competition and new business models in the digital era
-Ethnic-mainstream or interethnic media relations in the global media industries
-Communication policy, media law, and ethnic media in the digital era
-Minority languages, media, and media technologies
-Historical perspectives on technology and ethnic media

Theoretical essays, empirical studies, case studies, and policy-oriented scholarship on the abovementioned topics conducted in any geographical area of the world are welcomed. Scholarship pertaining to regions of the world less studied (e.g., Africa, East and South Asia, Central and South America), and that is comparative in nature, is encouraged. Work based on any theoretical perspective and methodological framework, and work by authors from all disciplines, including media and communication studies, journalism, sociology, political science, and economics, will be considered.

Deadline for abstract:
Please indicate interest by submitting a 500-word abstract  as a Word document attachment directly to Sherry Yu ( and Matthew Matsaganis ( by August 31, 2016

September 30, 2016

Deadline for full paper:
December 15, 2016

Publication: Spring 2018

A few words about the Editors:

Sherry S. Yu (PhD, Simon Fraser University, School of Communication) is Assistant Professor in the Department of Journalism, and a faculty member in the Media & Communication doctoral program at Temple University. Her research explores cultural diversity and media in relation to cultural literacy, civic engagement, and intercultural dialogue in a multicultural society, with a specific focus on ethnic media, multiculturalism, and transnational migration. Her research has been published in Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism, the Canadian Journal of Communication, Canadian Ethnic Studies, and PLATFORM: Journal of Media and Communication.

Matthew Matsaganis (PhD, University of Southern California, Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism) is Associate Professor in the Communication Department, and Affiliate Graduate Faculty in the Department of Informatics, at the State University of New York at Albany. He is the lead author of Understanding Ethnic Media: Producers, Consumers and Societies (Sage, 2011). His research addresses issues of ethnic media consumption, production and sustainability, the role of communication in building community capacity, health disparities and the social determinants of health, as well as the social impact of technology. His research has been published in Journalism, the International Journal of Communication, the Journal of Health Communication, the Journal of Applied Communication Research, Human Communication Research, the Electronic Journal of Communication, the Journal of Information Policy, and the American Behavioral Scientist, among other scholarly journals. Matthew is also a recovering print journalist. He has worked for a variety of publications in Athens, Greece, and New York City.

Author: Center for Intercultural Dialogue

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, the Director of the Center for Intercultural Dialogue, manages this website.

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