Welcome IAMCR members to Dublin

Message from Pat Brereton
Head of School of Communications in DCU

It is with great pleasure I welcome the large number of IAMCR delegates to DCU and Dublin and I certainly look forward to meeting many of you and hope you have a good and fruitful conference. I have to thank my colleague Paschal Preston for taking on the heavy duties of organizing the event with his small staff of helpers who you will meet when you arrive. They have been working hard over the last few months to make your stay as comfortable as possible.

As reflected in the conference theme, our school is also going through a difficult time with budget cuts and national/international financial difficulties. I believe, however, we have a very strong school with great staff and we can ensure that Communications – both teaching and research – can become an essential glue for DCU. As a school with a long history of influence within ‘blue chip’ media organizations within Ireland and abroad, with a strong vocational ethos together with a growing research culture – culminating in hosting one of the largest media and communications networks of scholars in the world. I’m personally involved in a panel on Communicating Climate Change and Environmentalism generally and see great scope for this area with regards to EU’s Grand Challenges.

Drawing on our core strengths in Journalism, Multimedia and Communications, which has ensured a strong portfolio over the last 20 years or so - on the communications degree for example, which has over 100 students per year on the program – and has continued to grow in spite of changing radically over the last few years. Also, our multimedia degree has great vocational potential for synergies with the journalism degree – as both needs a deep appreciation of new technology and being able to use audio-visual technology to get messages across.

Media Literacy remains the cornerstone of 21st century citizenship, as we communicate more and more through new devices and online, consequently we can provide the scholarship necessary to ensure that both policy decisions and the media industry generally are prepared for changes and we maintain a critical engagement with such transformations.

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