SMiD 2024 “Media (and) sustainability: Crises, paradoxes and potentials”

Keynote: Environmental Data and The Materiality of Media (Jussi Parikka, Professor, Aarhus University, Denmark)

Download the final program here (updated April 18th, 2024).

May 2nd (full day) & 3rd (half day), 2024 // Location: AAU, Copenhagen

Call for papers

Considering the recent climate developments and resulting socio-economic disparities, questions that address media and communication from a broader sustainability perspective have become increasingly urgent. Yet, they reside far too often at the periphery of media and communication research and practice. SMiD 2024 seeks to raise awareness and address these issues, fostering a critical discussion on the role of media and communication in relation to the notion of sustainability. We understand sustainability as defined by the United Nations Brundtland Commission in 1987, as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”. We address the topic in its broadest possible sense, ranging from environmental, economic, and political Issues to social well-being. Contributions are invited through both the open call and the themed call

SMiD 2024 – Open call (on site)

At SMiD’s 2024 biennial meeting, we wish to address questions regarding the relationship of media and communication and sustainability in times of crises. We welcome a diverse range of submissions in the broader field of media and communication studies, from traditional papers to alternative and innovative formats such as roundtables, discussion papers, interviews, posters, workshops, and working group meetings. SMiD’s open call is open to all researchers and practitioners with connections to the media and communication research and/or practice environment in Denmark and/or having the wish to connect to the community. If your work is not related to the overall conference theme, you are still welcome to present. If applicable, please try to reflect on the following question: How can media and communication research and practice contribute towards a sustainable society?

Suggestions for contributions should be between 400-500 words (including references). For panels, the submission should consist of a panel rationale (max 300 words) and abstracts for all papers (max 150 words each). Please submit no later than January 26th, 2024 via e-mail, indicating that you are answering the open call.

SMiD 2024 – Themed call (hybrid and on site, in collaboration with MedieKultur)

The themed call focusses more specifically on the socio-ecological consequences of digital media and communication, a topic that is becoming increasingly urgent considering recent climate developments. Digital society is built on a pertinent paradox: while a robust information infrastructure is undeniably crucial for modern democracies, the very fabric of contemporary media and digital communication stand as one of the most prominent contributors to the global carbon footprint and associated social inequalities (Kannengießer & McCurdy, 2021; Vestberg, 2014). In fact, already in 2011, digital communication was estimated to produce as much CO2 emissions as the aviation industry and the rapid adoption of artificial intelligence threatens to augment this carbon footprint exponentially in the coming years (Saenko, 2023). Within the themed call we wish to address this paradox in more detail and examine the role of (digital) media and communication within the broader theme of socio-ecological sustainability. Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  1. News media: e.g., climate reporting and climate framing, sustainable news production, resilience journalism, news media, and political power.
  2. The ”good” life and datafied living: e.g., balancing personal lifestyle choices and their environmental consequences, navigating environmental data and environmental practices.
  3. Everyday practices and sustainability: e.g., upcycling practices, civil movements, and reimagining everyday practices for a sustainable future.
  4. Organisational practices: e.g., authenticity vs. greenwashing, communication, AI, and digital sustainability.
  5. Sustainable communication: e.g., new ways of explaining the impacts media habits induce on the climate and environment, communicating these challenges,
  6. Politics and governance: e.g., communication practices of political parties, issues in climate governance, political and institutional decision-making.

For the themed call, we invite on-going research as well as more experimental forms such as academic essays and/or other formats. The themed call builds the basis for a special issue to be published in MedieKultur in fall 2025 following the official editorial guidelines, including a double-blind peer-review process. SmiD’s themed call is open to media and communication scholars, from PhD candidates to professors, and practitioners in the field. The special issue resulting from the themed call will be guest edited by Mikkel Fugl Eskjær, Aalborg University, Denmark, Sandra Simonsen, Aarhus University, Denmark, Henrik Bødker, Aarhus University, Denmark og Martina Skrubbeltrang Mahnke, Roskilde University, Denmark.

Suggestions for contributions should be between 400-500 words (excluding references). Please submit no later than January 26th, 2024, via e-mail, indicating that you are answering the themed call.

Overall timeline

Deadline for contributions: February 2nd, 2024
Notice of acceptance: No later than February 23rd, 2024
Deadline for conference registration: March 15th, 2024

Download full call as PDF


Kannengießer, S., & McCurdy, P. (2021). Mediatization and the Absence of the Environment. Communication Theory, 31(4), 911–931.
Maxwell, R. (2014). Media Industries and the Ecological Crisis. Media Industries Journal, 1(2).
Saenko, K. (2023, May 23). Is generative AI bad for the environment? A computer scientist explains the carbon footprint of ChatGPT and its cousins. The Conversation.
Vestberg, R. M., Raundalen, J. & Lager, N. (Ed.). (2014). Media and the Ecological Crisis. Routledge.