World-leading communication, media, and law research for a flourishing digital society.
Across our five programs we aim to undertake high-quality research that generates deep understanding, is relevant to our industry, government and community partners, and makes a productive contribution to policy and public debate.
This program investigates how the business practices and cultural dynamics of media industries are adapting to profound transformations in the production, distribution, consumption, and regulation of media content in local and global contexts. We examine the operations of power and the potential for innovation, focusing especially on the implications they pose for media makers, the media they make, and their social consequences across the film, television, games, music, news, and social media industries.
Digital publics form around shared interests, issues, and identities. They develop as the users of digital and social media create, publish, share, and engage with news, media, and journalism; participate in political debates; and express their everyday cultural interests and identities. But digital publics are also affected by, and sometimes actively spread, problematic content such as mis- and disinformation, racism, or extremism; are influenced by, negotiate, and resist the politics and power of digital platforms; and experience the algorithmic shaping of their digital lives.
Digital publics provide new opportunities for news engagement, for public communication, and for cultural participation. The Digital Publics research program within the QUT Digital Media Research Centre uses a range of innovative research methods including advanced data science and rich qualitative approaches to assess:
- the dynamics of these publics;
- their roles in society;
- how they are shaped by and shape platform technologies and politics;
- how regulation and legislation govern them.
This program investigates how rapid advances in computation and human-machine communication are transforming society, through automation and AI, the Internet of Things, and disintermediating technologies such as blockchain. We draw on and extend computer science and critical humanities theory and methods (including agent-based modelling, machine vision, critical simulation, and information visualisation) to help explore and explain emergent phenomena in the digital media environment, including the fundamental transformation of communication itself.
This program aims unfold digital societies give rise to new social, legal and technical challenges and opportunities. The major platforms continue to grow at enormous scale and wield power over the development of digital economies. Digital infrastructure continues to expand into every facet of societal life. New forms of online harm continually emerge as human relationships are increasingly mediated through digital infrastructure. New forms of legal intervention and governance are therefore required to promote just and fair digital societies that promotes human flourishing. We examine future models of governance and recommend policy changes that can improve regulatory regimes in the near term.
Working in partnership with industry, government and community organisations, this program uses innovative digital ethnographic and co-design methods to understand, intervene, and advocate for digital access and literacy as vital elements of social inclusion. We help equip citizens and consumers with the knowledge and skills to confidently, effectively and ethically navigate the increasingly complex digital media environment; and we deliver actionable new knowledge of the structural conditions and circumstances that impact on equitable and safe participation in the digital society.