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Liz Evans

Associate Professor in Film and Television Studies, Faculty of Arts

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Expertise Summary

I am primarily interested in the relationship between technology and experiences of narrative. My research spans interests in audience and industry studies, with a particular focus on transmedia narratives and innovative forms of storytelling. My first book, Transmedia Television, explored the attitudes, opinions and values of audiences towards the development of the internet and mobile phone as extensions and alternatives to the television set. My current book,Understanding Engagement in Transmedia Culture (due to be published by Routledge in 2020) asks audiences and practitioners to define what they mean be 'engagement' with screen content. The book will offer a new model for interrogating audience screen experiences and examine how practitioners' perceptions of those experience overlap or differ from audiences themselves.I have also published on a range of topics including audience attitudes towards streaming services, transmedia branding and game economics, transmedia narratives and literacy, and the production dynamics of alternate reality games.

I currently serve as a board member for the Society of Cinema and Media Studies, the largest international subject association for screen and media studies. More information on SCMS can be found here.

Transmedia Television: Audiences New Media and Daily Life

Teaching Summary

My teaching interests are primarily focused within the fields of television studies, new media studies and research methods. I have taught on a number of modules including those concerned with… read more

Research Summary

I am primarily interested in the relationship between technology and experiences of narrative. My research spans interests in audience and industry studies, with a particular focus on transmedia… read more

Selected Publications

  • EVANS, E., 2014. Tweeting on the BBC: Audience and Brand Management via Third Party Websites. In: SANTO, AVI, JOHNSON, DEREK and KOMPARE, DEREK, eds., Making Media Work: Cultures of Management in the Entertainment Industries NYU Press.
  • EVANS, ELIZABETH, 2014. "We're all a bunch of Nutters!": Production Dyanmics in ARGs International Journal of Communication. 8, 1-20
  • EVANS, ELIZABETH, FLINTHAM, MARTIN and MARTINDALE, SARAH, 2014. The Malthusian Paradox: Performance in an Alternate Reality Game Pervasive Ubiquitous Computing.
  • EVANS, ELIZABETH, 2014. Mobile Engagement: The Technological and Social Dynamics of Transmedia Pervasive Narratives. In: XU, XIAOGE, ed., Interdisciplinary Mobile Media and Communications: Social, Political and Economic Implications IGI Global.

My teaching interests are primarily focused within the fields of television studies, new media studies and research methods. I have taught on a number of modules including those concerned with textual analysis, introducing students to television studies, audience research and video production. I have also supervised dissertations on topics including the representation of soldiers on British television, 'tween' girls' engagement with makeover programmes, alternate reality films and technophobia, smartphone use, and the use of profile pictures on Facebook. I am particularly interested in developing the use of new technologies (most notably tablet computers and smartphones) in the teaching of audio-visual material including television, film and 'interactive' forms such as video games.

I am Director of the Creative Student Network, which aims to offer our students skills and advice that will help them secure jobs in the screen industries. Network activities include small filming projects, CV/networking training and talks from a range of industry professionals. The Network is also home to an internship programme with places at Fox Studios and the Art Directors Guild in Los Angeles, and Red Bee Media and Natalie Edwards Semiotics in the UK.

I have supervised a number of postgraduate research students on topics including seriality in television, comics and videogames, authorship and branding, accidental audiences, the materiality of fandom and collective production. I also co-supervise two interdisciplinary PhD projects with colleagues in Computer Science on audience responses to suspense films and emotional engagement with videogames.

Current Research

I am primarily interested in the relationship between technology and experiences of narrative. My research spans interests in audience and industry studies, with a particular focus on transmedia narratives and innovative forms of storytelling. My first book, Transmedia Television, explored the attitudes, opinions and values of audiences towards the development of the internet and mobile phone as extensions and alternatives to the television set. My current book,Understanding Engagement in Transmedia Culture (due to be published by Routledge in 2020) asks audiences and practitioners to define what they mean be 'engagement' with screen content. The book will offer a new model for interrogating audience screen experiences and examine how practitioners' perceptions of those experience overlap or differ from audiences themselves. I have also published on a range of topics including audience attitudes towards streaming services, transmedia branding and game economics, transmedia narratives and literacy, and the production dynamics of alternate reality games.

Transmedia Television: Audiences New Media and Daily Life

Past Research

Understanding the Multimedia Household - this project used an innovative methodology to examine how audiences were using multiple technologies in relation to television viewing. We placed cameras within participants' living rooms and use web loggers to match up viewing and online behaviour.

Connected Viewing - two project examined audience attitudes towards streaming services in the UK and in South Korea, India and Brazil. The projects were initially commissioned be Warner Bros Home Entertainment. For more information, see the Connected Viewing Initiative.

Moving Experience - this project involved a collaboration with digital artist Rik Lander to create The Memory Dealer, a transmedia experience that was part theatre, part game. We used focus groups and participant observation to explore a number of topics including how otherwise 'media literate' audiences made sense of new narrative forms and the role of music within innovative storytelling.

Future Research

My next project, Dead Devices: Interrogating Failure in Media Technology History, will explore domestic media devices that 'failed'. It will consider what 'failure' means within each device's historical context and how industrial, technological and social factors intersect within that failure. The first device that the project will examine is the mutoscope/kinora, devised in the late 19thcentury as an alternative to the cinematic project and available in both a public and domestic format.

School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies

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