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Welcome to our new Visiting Fellows

Visiting Fellows
L-R: Lea Hellmueller, Seth Lewis, Mike Schäfer, Sascha Hölig

The Reuters Institute welcomes four new Visiting Fellows to Oxford this term, each bringing a wealth of experience and knowledge to complement the work of the institute. They will undertake research into key issues facing journalism and the media. Seth Lewis will join us for the whole of the upcoming academic year, while Lea Hellmueller, Mike Schäfer, and Sascha Hölig, will spend various periods here during the first (Michaelmas) term.

During his year at the Reuters Institute Dr Lewis, the Shirley Papé Chair in Emerging Media at the School of Journalism and Communication, University of Oregon, will focus on "the lived experience of news—what it means for people to encounter, engage with, and make sense of news as a part of their everyday lives." He added he is interested in looking at why, as Reuters Institute research has revealed, "a growing share of people avoid news altogether and half the people who do get news find it unsatisfying. Why is it so, and what might we learn?" Dr Lewis has held positions at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities and Stanford University. He has twice won the International Communication Association’s award for Outstanding Article of the Year in Journalism Studies.

Dr Hellmueller is an Associate Professor of Journalism at the Jack J. Valenti School of Communication, University of Houston. She will look at the rise of populist journalism, including analyses of far-right critiques of the news media, their impact on trust in the media, and how the media should respond. She said she is “looking forward to working with the incredible team, to learn from and exchange ideas with journalism fellows at the institute as well as with professors and staff at the Department of Politics and International Relations.”

Climate change is arguably the most urgent problem facing the world right now. Dr Schäfer from the Department of Communication and Media Research, University of Zurich, will build on his work on how the challenges facing the world's ecosystems and people are communicated in public in light of the vast changes happening in the media. He said he is looking forward to “tapping into the enormous expertise” of the Reuters Institute to work on a literature review around this issue.

Dr Hölig of the Leibniz Institute for Media Research/Hans-Bredow Institut, University of Hamburg, authored the German section of our Digital News Report 2019. He will spend time at the Reuters Institute researching cross-country news repertoires and said he hopes to gain “new inspirations and [have] constructive discussions”.

Reuters Institute Research Fellow Richard Fletcher welcomed the Visiting Fellows. He said: “Everyone at the Institute is very much looking forward to working with Lea, Mike, Sascha and Seth in the coming months. Their knowledge and expertise together covers a broad range of different topics, and we will all benefit hugely from their time here."