Guest speaker: Intermediaries in the UK influencer ecology

The Transforming Creativity Research Group and MA Global Media Management are pleased to welcome Dr Sophie Bishop (King’s College, London) to WSA on Thursday 27th February 2-3pm in Harvard Lecture Theatre

Sophie’s talk is titled Intermediaries in the UK influencer ecology – algorithmic experts and influencer management software. Please see below for overview and biography: 

Although influencer content can be presented as independent, ‘DIY’ or ‘amateur’, influencer markets and ecologies are shaped or co-produced by a growing number of intermediary actors and organisations. Examples  include talent agencies, multi-channel networks, brand consultants and many other hopeful stakeholders who hope to take advantage of a professionalising ‘Wild West’. This talk will consider two intermediaries in the UK influencer marketplace – firstly, I look to algorithmic experts, who claim an understanding of YouTube’s algorithms that can be taught to aspiring creators, to ensure visibility and attention on the platform. Secondly, I look at algorithmic tools used to rank influencer ‘employability’ and predict risk of influencer scandal or cancellation. Critically examining both of these cases shows the number of ‘hidden’ stakeholders who co-produce influencer content, and demonstrates how such actors can influence participation, representation and sustain inequalities within influencer ecologies. 

Sophie Bishop works as a Lecturer in the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s College London where she researches and teaches on cultures of content creation, digital marketing industries, and intersectional inequalities and experiences therein.

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Centre for Cultural Value

As part of the consultation for the Centre for Cultural Value (hosted at Leeds University and launching June 2020), Dan attended a workshop day in Cardiff:

The Centre is proposing a number of activities and outputs, including developing an independent evidence base, co-creating evaluation principles, seed funding action-research projects, and a working group to explore how to develop impact narratives.

Dan participated in group convserations in relation to the proposed themes: cultural participation; community, place, identity; culture, health and wellbeing.

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The first event will be in February in Leeds. Details here.



George Morgan talk: Creative Calling

Transforming Creativity and MA Global Media Management were pleased to co-host George Morgan from Western Sydney University for the talk – The Creative Calling: Vocation, Career, and Enterprise.

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George explored creative work and the ‘new spirit of capitalism’, creative education and labour markets, and class as an obstacle to creative careers. George provide narrative stories from research participants and closed in exploring precarious work and frustrated ambitions. The talk was followed with a lively discussion with staff and students from WSA.

The Creative Calling: Vocation, Career, and Enterprise

Transforming Creativity Research Group and MA Global Media Management present:

“The Creative Calling: Vocation, Career, and Enterprise”
Dr George Morgan (Western Sydney University)

Wednesday 30th October 4-5.30pm in Lecture Theatre A, Winchester School of Art

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Creativity has now become a buzzword for western economic renewal. In our book The Creativity Hoax, (Anthem, 2018) Pariece Nelligan and I argue that the idea of the creative or cultural economy contains an implicit promise that work will become more fulfilling and that the worker can realistically aspire to make a living and a career from their artistic calling. This seminar will explore some of the contemporary myths of new capitalism and the way they provide symbolic bridges between the youthful non-conformist origins of creativity and the highly neo-liberal circumstances of the market for creative skills.

George Morgan is Associate Professor at the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University. His recent research deals with creative skills and in particular the obstacles encountered by young people from disadvantaged/ minority backgrounds in building creative careers. His book The Creativity Hoax: Precarious Work and the New Economy (Anthem Press), co-authored with Pariece Nelligan was published in 2018.



Creative Calling (full abstract)

Remembering the creative city

Dan presented at the second Creativity, Knowledge, Cities conference hosted at the Watershed in Bristol. The programme is here. Dan’s talk was exploring the UK City of Culture competition. This talk builds on the roundtable at last year’s conference and a number of collaborative activities.

Here is some of the Twitter coverage:

Dan also chaired a panel on Creative Governance:

Refuturing creative work and remixing creative education

In early September, Dan attended the 3rd CAMEo conference in Leicester. Dan was part of a panel on “Re-Futuring Creative Work” with Professor Susan Luckman, Professor Stephanie Taylor, and Associate Professor George Morgan. Dan’s talk was linked to the “Unexpected Enterprises” project (details of past workshops are here). A chapter (co-authored with Emma Agusita) linked to this project and talk will be published within an edited collection that is part of Palgrave’s new series, “Creative Working Lives”.

Some of the Twitter posts on this: