The School of English and Media Studies is currently seeking applicants for postgraduate scholarships at Massey University Wellington (New Zealand) for a research project that is externally funded by the Marsden Fund of the New Zealand Royal Society and entitled, “Geographies of Media Convergence: Spaces of Democracy, Connectivity and the Reconfiguration of Cultural Citizenship.”
 There are scholarships available at both Masters (one year fulltime) and PhD (three years fulltime) levels. We welcome applicants who wish to develop their research interests within our overall project theme. We welcome applications from indigenous scholars and Latin American(ist) scholars and scholars working at the intersection of human geography and media studies.

Master’s Scholarship
This scholarship is for a 1-year fulltime Master’s degree (MA or MPhil) by thesis (i.e., no coursework is involved). It will be awarded to an applicant with a high GPA and a Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies, Cultural Studies, Geography, or a cognate discipline. It covers living costs as well as the full domestic component of tuition fees. The total value of the scholarship is NZD $16,000 plus up to $6,000 in fees. It is open to New Zealand domestic and international students (though international students would be required to provide their own source of funding to make up the shortfall between the domestic and international tuition fees).

PhD Scholarship
This scholarship is for a fulltime 3-year PhD degree (which in New Zealand is a degree by research that does not include a coursework component). It will be awarded to an applicant with a high GPA and a Master’s degree in Media Studies, Cultural Studies, Geography, or a cognate discipline. It covers living costs as well as full domestic tuition fees. It is open to New Zealand domestic as well as international students. The total value of the scholarship is NZD75,000 (NZD25,000 pa) plus fees of up to $6,000 per annum for three years.

Project Summary
We are currently living through a period in which centralized forms of media, such as national television and mainstream journalism, are perceived to be in crisis. This crisis is creating new spaces for the development of alternative ways of knowing, watching and making media. Along with them, media convergence has emerged as a multidimensional concept that references expanding interconnections and interactivity between media technologies, sites, users and production processes, as well as increasingly interactive relationships between politics and popular media cultures. Technological development, media convergence, and attendant transformations of everyday media production, circulation and consumption practices are giving rise to new forms of political discourse and involvement. The proposed research seeks to delineate the possibilities and limitations for contemporary social transformation within this new media ecology. We will do this by exploring a series of media forms, discourses, practices and technologies (including indigenous people’s media as well as contemporary developments in entertainment television) whereby new kinds of cultural citizenship are being actively forged.

This project is thus designed to advance incipient dialogues between human geography and media studies by asking how practices within popular cultures of media convergence can contribute to the construction or renovation of democratic citizenship. The researchers involved with this project will analyze processes of media convergence whereby diverse groups in different parts of the world are actively fashioning new forms of political engagement, identity production and cultural citizenship. The research team will thus explore significant sites of media activity for the production of new political imaginaries within the current global historical conjuncture, which is characterized by four key interrelated elements: 1) the appearance and expansion throughout the world of resurgent and increasingly networked indigenous social movements; 2) the emergence of a highly elaborated and complex convergent media ecology marked by rapid technological development, digitalization, miniaturization and mobilization; 3) the rise and spread of neoliberalism, which is increasingly subject to growing contestation, particularly within Latin America; and 4) increased securitization and militarization organized at multiple levels of social life particularly since September 11, 2001. Within this broad historical conjuncture, areas of focus within our project include 1) the expansion of indigenous television in different parts of the world; and 2) the ongoing transformation of entertainment TV and concomitant proliferation of new modes of interactive engagement with such media by digitally empowered citizens. We propose to examine the processes of convergence culture at work within these phenomena in order to identify and analyze citizenship and citizen-like practices that are occurring across different media formats and platforms.

Application Details
• The closing date for applications is Tuesday, 22 February, 2013
• The preferred starting date for the scholarship is 1 April 2013 (though this is negotiable)
• All applications must be submitted in paper form to and must be postmarked no later than the application closing date. To expedite the review of applications, we encourage you to also submit an electronic version of your application to this email address: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
• Your application should include the following:
1. A brief cover letter that contains contact details and your preferred starting date
2. A 1000-word proposal outlining your proposed thesis research and how it fits with the aims of the project
3. Your CV
4. A sample of your academic writing (e.g., for PhD applicants, a published article from an academic journal, Masters thesis chapter, seminar paper, etc.; for Masters applicants, a paper from an upper division undergraduate or Honours-level course).
• Two letters of recommendation from persons competent to speak about your academic record at University level must be sent separately to the project supervisors via the email addresses below.
Further information and instructions on how to apply can be found at: or [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Informal enquiries about the scholarships prior to the deadline can also be directed to the project supervisors: [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]> and [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>
Kevin Glynn
School of English & Media Studies
Massey University Wellington
PO Box 756
Wellington 6140
Aotearoa/New Zealand

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