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Sir Lenny Henry leads media diversity journal launch

30 March 2021

New academic and industry journal Representology, which explores diversity in media, was introduced by Sir Lenny Henry, Chancellor of Birmingham City University, in a collaborative event with Cardiff University.

The tri-annual publication is dedicated to research and best-practice perspectives on how to make the media more representative of all sections of society.

Activist and broadcaster Sir Lenny Henry was joined by Representology editor, critic and broadcaster K Biswas, former gal-dem Politics Editor Leah Cowan and Visiting Professor Marcus Ryder and Acting Chair of the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity at Birmingham City University for the event.

Watch the launch of Representology

Event host and Representology co-director Dr David Dunkley Gyimah, based at Cardiff University’s School of Journalism, Media and Culture, said: “This feels like a moment. There's a dearth of journals that cater for people with protected characteristics and provide a platform for the full richness and spectrum of Black and brown people's experience inside the media and academia.

“The net effect of a journal like Representology is to support and enhance wellbeing and the wider community. I'm happy too we're innovating in this space fusing ideas towards a contemporary hybrid journal and how this has all been made possible by the selfless collaborative efforts at all levels from Birmingham City University, its Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity, and Cardiff University.”

Fellow host and co-director of Representology Professor Diane Kemp, director of the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity at Birmingham City University, said: “We wanted to create a journal that bridged a gap which seems to exist between great academic research and the media industry. We think it can be closed by access and language, so we made it a free download with research written for a wider readership and where well-sourced items by scholars and media insiders have equal value with editors.”

The journal is edited by critic K Biswas who has written for a number of publications including the New Statesman, the New York Times, and the Times Literary Supplement. He is also a founder of The Race Beat, a network for journalists of colour working in the UK, and director of Resonance FM, Europe's largest community radio station.

K Biswas said: “I'm delighted to launch Representology which brings together figures at the heart of the British media with leading academic specialists. At a time when established platforms indicate a wish to address historic imbalances within their organisations, our journal will bring to light important facts about diversity in Britain and help practitioners create a media that reflects the richness of every part of society."

Read the first issue of Representology here

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