(Un)Covering Disasters: A Conference on Disaster Journalism and Risk Communication

Jaime Manuel Flores's picture
Type of Call: 
Call for papers
April 25, 2014

(Un)Covering Disasters: A Conference on

Disaster Journalism and Risk Communication

24–25 July 2014

Ateneo de Manila University

Quezon City, Philippines


Recent disasters in the Asia-Pacific Region, such as the Tohoku tsunami, Bohol earthquake, and Typhoon Haiyan, have brought to light issues and concerns related to the mainstream and alternative media coverage of disasters and post-disaster responses.

Analysts, scholars, government representatives, media practitioners, and even members of the general public have a stake in how the media covers disasters and post-disaster responses. This conference seeks to provide a venue for discussion and critical discourse of this subject. It will bring together journalists, academics, scientists, and other stakeholders to engage in dialogue, which hopefully will lay the groundwork for the crafting of efficient and ethical frameworks for disaster reporting.

The discourse on disasters is unique to the cultures and countries in which these events occur. This conference seeks to uncover the complexities of disaster reporting through a union of theoretical and practical approaches. As such, it invites paper contributions from students, scholars, and practitioners on any of the following topics or themes:

  • Theoretical perspectives on risk communication and environmental journalism
  • The use of local and indigenous knowledge in disaster risk reduction
  • Representation of tragedy and suffering in the mainstream and new media
  • Visual representations of disaster through photographs, film or video
  • Internal (intra- and interagency) and external (media relations) communication activities of government agencies and relief NGOs
  • Reporting of post-disaster responses, rescue, retrieval, and relief operations, and delivery of humanitarian aid
  • Safety protocols for journalists in disaster news coverage
  • The role of journalism in facilitating efficient and effective disaster response
  • Public participation and engagement through social media during disaster events
  • Communication and public understanding of disaster preparedness programs and campaigns

The conference will accept papers that range from theoretically driven research to those that are anchored on an empiricist understanding of disaster situations as they occur on the ground.

Undergraduate and graduate student papers are also welcome. Works-in-progress are also welcome, provided that data will be available for presentation on the day assigned to the presenter.

Submission guidelines

Interested paper presenters should submit a 350-word abstract, articulating the study’s significance, methods used, theoretical and conceptual frameworks, and discussion of findings. Panel proposals are also welcome, and should include a 100-word description/rationale of the proposed panel, as well as the abstracts of the individual papers included in the panel.

All submissions must be in Word (.doc) format, and should include the name/s of the proponent/s (surname underlined), a short biography, the institution/s represented, email address/es, and the phone/mobile numbers of corresponding author/s.

The deadline for submission abstracts and panel proposals is 25 April 2014, Friday. Notification of acceptance will be sent by the second week of May 2014.

Please send all the needed information, as well as other inquiries and concerns, to both addresses:

Travel and conference subsidy

Participants are encouraged to seek funds for travel and conference participation from their home institutions.

Important dates

25 April 2014                        Deadline of abstracts and panel proposals

16 May 2014                         Notification of acceptance

13 June 2014                       Last day of early bird registration

20 June 2014                       Release of final conference program

11 July 2014                         Last day of regular registration

24-25 July 2014                   Conference dates

Registration fees

(Payment details and guidelines will be announced soon.)

                                                                              Professionals                         Students

International participants (in USD)

Early bird rate                                                    50                                            25

(until 13 June 2014)

Regular rate                                                     100                                          50

(14 June 2014 – 11 July 2014)

Late and on-site registration                         120                                           70

(starting 12 July 2014)

Local participants (in PHP)

Early bird rate                                                     2,000                                        750 

(until 13 June 2014)

       Regular rate                                           3,000                                      1,500

(14 June 2014 – 11 July 2014)

          Late and on-site registration               3,500                                      2,000

            (starting 12 July 2014)

Please note:

  1. Registration fees include 1 lunch and 2 snacks for each day of the conference, as well as a conference kit.
  2. Early bird rates are for those who will be able to register on or before 13 June 2014, 11pm (Philippine Standard Time).
  3. Special meals may be arranged for vegetarians and those with food allergies. Please inform organizers before 6 June 2013 if you have any dietary restrictions so that the necessary preparations can be made.

Conference website

For more information and updates on registration and other important matters, please visit http://uncoveringdisasters.blogspot.com.