No. 457 - October 19, 2020

  • Coming Events:

    - MLIS SC Presents: Virtual Grad Lounge
    - "Writing for The Conversation Canada" - a Zoom webinar for social science and humanities researchers at Western
    - University Budget Town Halls
    - FIMSwrites - Virtual Edition
    - "We are the stories we tell ourselves: Indigenous Representation in Canadian Media"
    - "Big Data in the Digital Health Landscape"
    - "Science v. the Sacred, a Dead-end Settler Ontology -- And Then What?"
    - CAIS 2020: Open Virtual Conference
    - Forest City Film Festival
  • Important Dates:

    - Monday, October 26 - Friday, October 30, 2020 - MLIS Research Week
  • News & Announcements:

    - In Memoriam: Judith Knelman
    - Latest FIMS Alumni Newsletter available online
  • Awards & Accomplishments:

    - Erin Isings
    - Heidi Julien
    - Mark Kearney
    - Nadine Wathen
  • Publications & Presentations:

    - Michael Ridley
    - Effie Sapuridis
    - Luke Stark
  • In the Media:

    - Melissa Adler
    - Alissa Centivany
    - Basil Chiasson
    - Amber Matthews
    - Selma Purac
    - Joanna Redden
    - Luke Stark
  • Additional Activities of Note:

    - Launch of Platforms, Populisms, Pandemics and Riots (Nick Dyer-Witheford and Alessandra Mularoni)
    - Chapter featured in article on predatory research (Victoria Rubin and Nicole Delellis)
  • News from the FIMS Graduate Library:

  • News from Western Libraries:

  • Next Issue:

Coming Events

"Writing for The Conversation Canada" - a Zoom webinar for social science and humanities researchers at Western
Tuesday, October 20, 2020
12:30 p.m. - 1:25 p.m.
Via Zoom
Too often, it feels like there are few ways for us to bring our research out of journals and conferences and into the minds of the wider Canadian and International communities. One often-overlooked avenue is The Conversation. Open to all of Western's social science and humanities researchers, please join us for a presentation from The Conversation Canada's Editor-in-Chief, Scott White (read more).

MLIS SC Presents: Virtual Grad Lounge

Tuesday, October 20 | 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Tuesday, October 27 | 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Via Zoom
Join the MLIS SC in their Virtual Grad Lounge. See the poster.

University Budget Town Halls
Tuesday, October 20 | 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Wednesday, October 21 | 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Via Zoom
All members of Western’s campus community are invited to attend one of two virtual town hall meetings which will provide an update on the current status of the University's planning process and the high-level budgetary context for our planning. Registration required to receive the Zoom link, and only people using a valid Western email address will be allowed to sign on.

FIMSwrites - Virtual Edition
Every Wednesday
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Via Zoom
Do you expect to have paper, story, article, report, thesis, or book deadlines coming up? Does having other people writing around you help keep you on-task? Then join FIMSWrites, an informal initiative to provide some solidarity in the sometimes-solitary writing process. All FIMS graduate students, staff and faculty are welcome to bring their favourite writing devices and join us to write and check in. If you're interested, contact Pam McKenzie.

"We are the stories we tell ourselves: Indigenous Representation in Canadian Media"
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Via Zoom
Presented by Sara Mai Chitty, Curriculum & Pedagogy Advisor, Indigenous Initiatives, Western University. To register for the Zoom link, email Everyone is welcome.

Abstract: Since contact, the stories told about Indigenous peoples have shaped how and what Canadians think about Indigenous peoples. Oversimplification of the complex relationships between First Nations and the Canadian State in mainstream news media, as well as misrepresentation of Indigenous cultures and histories in Canadian pop culture, continues to create barriers to meaningful reconciliation (continue reading).

"Big Data in the Digital Health Landscape: An exploration of apps within the transition to parenting context and the co-production of ethical practice in research with minors"
Thursday, October 22, 2020
4:30 p.m.
Via Zoom
Presented by Danica Facca as part of the Mediations Lecture Series. Contact the Mediations Facebook event team to request the Zoom link.

Abstract: This talk will report on two separate, but complementary studies funded by Western’s Faculty of Health Sciences Emerging Team Grant headed by Dr. Lorie Donelle. The first part of the talk will share an excerpt of findings from a qualitative descriptive study (Transition to Parenting within the Context of Digital Health 3-year study 2019-2022), which employed focus groups to understand new parents’ experiences with and uses of digital technology during four-stages—pre-natal, pregnancy, labour, and post-partum—of their transition to becoming a new parent (continue reading).

"Science v. the Sacred, a Dead-end Settler Ontology -- And Then What?"
Friday, October 23, 2020
11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Via Zoom (contact for the link)
Presented by Kim TallBear, CRC in Indigenous Peoples, Technoscience & Environment, University of Alberta.

Abstract: Settler-colonial society works hard to separate so-called spirituality from the material. This worldview inhibits settler society grasping Indigenous knowledges as knowledge based on centuries of observations and intimate relations with other-than-human relatives. Instead, Indigenous peoples are viewed as exceedingly “spiritual,” and dominant scientific traditions (including the social sciences and humanities) tend to denigrate Indigenous understandings of the world as beliefs rather than knowledges (continue reading).

CAIS 2020: Virtual Open Conference
September 14 - October 26, 2020
This year's conference will consist of 42 presentations (including four panels) divided into a series of 20 live events spread over six weeks. Many presenter names will be familiar to the FIMS community. Still to come: Professor Victoria Rubin, Chris Brogly (HIS), Davin Helkenberg (PhD'19, LIS). See the full schedule of presentations.

Forest City Film Festival
October 17 - 25, 2020
FIMS is sponsoring this year's film festival. All films and Q&A's will be available on demand until November 1, 2020. The Festival will screen more than 60 films with a connection to London and Southwestern Ontario, competing in feature, documentary, short and animation categories. This year the Festival will be presenting a collection of Indigenous women telling Indigenous stories, with Q&As after each film. On October 23, a panel titled, "Meet The Creators: A Conversation with Indigenous Women Filmmakers" will take place at 1:00 p.m. For full details, visit the Forest City Film Festival website.

Important Dates

- Monday, October 26 - Friday, October 30, 2020 - MLIS Research Week

News & Announcements

In Memoriam: Judith Knelman
The FIMS community was saddened to learn that Judith Knelman, Professor Emerita, died on October 9, 2020, at her home in Toronto. She was 81. Professor Knelman arrived at FIMS as a scholar and print instructor with the Graduate School of Journalism in 1996/97. She retired in the early 2000's. Read more about her in her obituary online.

Latest FIMS Alumni Newsletter available online
The latest FIMS Alumni Newsletter, emailed to FIMS alumni on September 25, is available on the FIMS website. The Fall 2020 issue includes stories about gifts made in memory of alumni, accomplishments of alumni, online internships and more. Read the newsletter.

Awards & Accomplishments

Erin Isings and Mark Kearney, both FIMS instructors, were awarded the 2020 Dean's Awards for Excellence in Teaching. Isings won in the full-time teaching category while Kearney was selected for the part-time teaching category.

Heidi Julien, LIS PhD'97, (currently a professor in the Department of Information Science, Graduate School of Education, University of Buffalo) won the 2020 SIG-USE Outstanding Contributions to Information Behavior Award, and she was also inducted into the SIG-USE Academy of Fellows.

Professor Nadine Wathen is co-lead for a project titled "Violence against Women Services in a Pandemic: Mobilizing Research to Effect Change," which has been awarded a SSHRC Connection Grant. The purpose of the project is to mobilize the knowledge being drawn from the Violence Against Women Services in a Pandemic Study, which was previously funded through separate project awarded a Catalyst Grant in the spring.

Publications & Presentations

Michael Ridley, LIS PhD Candidate, presented “Machine Information Behaviour & Explainable AI: Foundational Issues for Academic Libraries” at the University of Toronto Libraries event, "Artificial Intelligence and Libraries: A Perspective from Two Authorities" on October 7, 2020.

Effie Sapuridis, Media Studies PhD student, gave a virtual poster presentation titled, "Pureblood for a Day: Fetishization of Wealth and the Subversion of Heteronormative Romance Tropes in Harry Potter Fanfiction," at the Fan Studies Network, North America conference, which ran October 13-17, 2020.

Luke Stark, Assistant Professor, published an article titled "The emotive politics of digital mood tracking," in New Media & Society in October 2020.

In the Media

Professors Melissa Adler, Alissa Centivany, Basil Chiasson, Selma Purac, Luke Stark and Joanna Redden are featured in an article titled "Faculty renewal brings fresh ideas to FIMS," published on the FIMS website in late September.

Amber Matthews, LIS PhD student, was interviewed for a Rogers TV special on diversity and inclusion in London. Matthews appears in the third segment (starts at 13:30) with Nicole Kaniki, special advisor on anti-racism to Western's president Alan Shepard.

Additional Activities of Note

Launch of Platforms, Populisms, Pandemics and Riots
Professor Nick Dyer-Witheford and Alessandra Mularoni, Media Studies PhD student, announce the opening of Platforms, Populisms, Pandemics and Riots,, a website devoted to the relations between digital capitalism, populist politics, the coronavirus crisis and rebellions in the streets, worldwide.

The launch features a major essay by Raffaele Sciortino, “Neopopulism as a Problem: Between Geopolitics and Class Struggle”, which draws on his as yet-untranslated-into-English book I dieci anni chen sconvolsero il mondo. Crisi globale e geopolitica dei neopopulismi (Ten Years that Shook the World. Global Crisis and Geopolitics of Neopopulism), (Asterios, Trieste 2018.)

In addition, the site includes a conversation between Nick and Raffaele, and essays on left populism and platform capitalism; media “framing theory” under new conditions; “big tech” in capitalism’s time of troubles; and riot logistics.

Chapter featured in article on predatory research
A chapter written by Associate Professor Victoria Rubin and LIS PhD student Nicole Delellis for a book titled Navigating Fake News, Alternative Facts, and Misinformation in a Post-Truth World, was highlighted in an article titled "How to Identify Predatory Research and Combat the Looming COVID-19 Misinformation 'Infodemic'," published by IGI Global on September 24.

News from the FIMS Graduate Library

Open: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11am - 3pm

Policies for socially-distanced use of the library:

  • follow the signs on doors and floors for traffic flow
  • masks are mandatory in the library
  • show your FIMS library card upon entry (you will be provided with a card on your first visit)
  • you must book a study or computer space before or upon arrival (we can help you with that at the service desk)
  • food and drinks are not permitted
  • wipe down your space before and after use
For health and safety reasons, access to the print collections are closed throughout campus. We can retrieve items from our collection for you to use in the library. After use, these items will be quarantined for 72 hours before they are available for others to use.

Email us with any questions - this email will be monitored 9am-4pm, Monday to Friday:

Visit our website for access to FIMS resources, including the booking page for reserving a space to work in the library:

Follow us on social media @fimsgradlib.

News from Western Libraries

Western Libraries is excited to offer a series of free Research Skills. Workshops that can help you better understand your research impact, how to retain your copyright as an author, scholarly publishing, data, and more! We expect these offerings to be of particular interest to graduate students. Faculty, staff, and undergraduate students are welcome to attend.

  • Introduction to Research Data Management & Funding Requirement (Oct 22)
  • Ins and Outs of Publishing Fees (Oct 23)
  • Introduction to Data Archiving with Dataverse (Nov 3)
  • Introduction to Systemic Reviews (Nov 4)
  • Preparing to publish (Nov 10)
  • Building and promoting your scholarly identity (Nov 12)

Register for the sessions at:

Next Issue

The Grad Bulletin is your source for news, announcements, and events pertaining to FIMS graduate programs. Submissions from the FIMS community are always welcome and may be sent via e-mail to

The next issue of the FIMS Graduate Bulletin will be published on Monday, November 2. The deadline for submissions is noon on Friday, October 30, 2020.