Sunday, March 24, 2013

BPN 1631: Research Trends Digital Media

Last Thursday it was the last guest lecture I presented to sophomore students Communication of the Applied University of Windesheim Flevoland in my hometown Almere (NL). The course was called Research on Trends in Communication, but it soon turned into Research on Trends in Digital Communication. The format of the guest lectures was: sitting in on a Powerpoint presentation, reading a relevant article, and writing five blog postings on the subjects treated. The guest lectures were in English, not in the Dutch language. The subjects were: Pre-internet, the disruptive technology of Internet, the creative industry, content and foresighting. One lecture was spent on searching the internet under the slogan: Formerly we believed in God, now in Google (Paul Claes). Social media was not explicitly on the list as we thought it more important to get the students blogging before going into micro-blogging.

Having explained the principles of foresighting with the Powerpoint presentation of my World Summit Award colleague Suzanne Stein, who works at the Canadian Film Centre, the students got the assignment to discover trends. Each of them was assigned a category of the World Summit Awards contests, WSA Global, WSA Mobile and WSYA, and write a blog posting about the trends. This turned out to be an interesting exercise as each student had at least some 50+ winners to study and analyse. The WSA sites, divided over three sites (,, can of course be used for more purposes in education. Besides the study of trends, they can also be used as research for potential projects. In the e-Learning category for example there are several examples of school curricula and in e-Culture there are several examples of promoting cultural places and museums.
Besides discovering trends and doing research on the winners, the winning projects are a source of inspiration for students and people in the trade.  And these three sites with 50+ winners are only a tip of the iceberg of submissions, which the WSA organisation has collected over the years. As all these submissions have passed judgement on the national level, it would be interesting to have access to all of them in one database. A conservative estimate will total 4000+ projects submitted. The World Summit Award database has proven to be an interesting hunting ground for trends to students and people working in new/digital media and communication.

For a specimen of the blogs produced, please have a look at the posting Trends in E-entertainment and games (link with permission by the author Denise Duijvenbode).

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