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Dr Declan McDowell-Naylor

Dr Declan McDowell-Naylor

Research Associate

School of Journalism, Media and Culture

Overview

I am a Research Associate in the School of Journalism, Media and Culture (JOMEC), where I work on the three year project "Beyond The MSM: Understanding the rise of alternative online media", based on a £517,731 ESRC research grant. Led by Dr. Stephen Cushion (Cardiff University) and Dr. Richard Thomas (Swansea University), the research project seeks to understand the content, consumption, and production of alternative online media. 

My research interests are in political communication and journalism, specifically the interconnection between how political parties communicate with citizens, the emergence of alternative media outlets, and trust in mainstream media outlets - these can be loosely defined under an interest in the use of digital technologies in media and politics. I am also interested in the ongoing attempts by governments, public bodies, and campaigners to regulate and monitor the power of large technology companies such as Google, Facebook, and Amazon. I am particularly interested in ‘big tech’ lobbying and public communication strategies, how digital technologies are implemented into political campaigning and the consequences of this for citizens, and qualitative research into technology policy-making. 

I have been published in Journalism, Journalism Studies, and the 10th volume of Political Communication in BritainMy writing has also appeared in Political Studies Review, The Conversation, and Three-D. For details of my publications, click here.

Biography

About

I earned my PhD in politics at Royal Holloway, University of London (2014-2019). I researched the role of public engagement with autonomous vehicle development within a jointly government-funded project that took place in London between 2015 and 2018. The research explored the democratic nature of this engagement process, arguing that citizens should be granted more and greater opportunities in these kinds of interaction. The PhD was supervised by Prof. Ben O'Loughlin and Prof. Andrew Chadwick. 

Prior to my PhD, I also earned an MSc (First) in Political Communuication from Royal Holloway (2013-2014), studying in the New Political Communication Unit. I have a BA (First Class Hons) in Linguistics from the University of Gloucestershire (2010-2013). 

Between 2016-2018, I worked as part of a British Academy/Leverhulme Trust funded project led by Prof. Andrew Chadwick. The project investigated the online behavior of one the most influential political organizations in the advanced democracies: think tanks. 

I began teaching in 2015 during my doctoral research. I have lectured and taught on courses on political theory and philosophy, British democracy, and political communication across many levels of higher education. Prior to this, I gained two-years of experience in learning support, at both further and higher education institutions. This has strongly informed my teaching style, which promotes inclusive and robust debate.

Publications

2021

2020

2019

2018

2016

Teaching

Current Teaching 

As a research associate, I currently have performed guest lectures in Cardiff on MA and BA Political Communication modules. 

Previous Taught Modules 

Queen Mary, University of London // Introduction to Politics and International Relations (Level 3) // Seminar Teacher // 2018-2019

Queen Mary, University of London // Introduction to Politics and International Relations (Level 6) // Lecturer, Seminar Teacher, Convener // 2018-2019

Royal Holloway, University of London // Democracy in Britain (Level 5) // Seminar Teacher // 2017-2019

Royal Holloway, University of London // Classic and Contemporary Readings in Politics and International Relations (Level 4) // Seminar Teacher // 2015-2018

Royal Holloway, University of London // Introduction to Political Communication (Level 5) // Guest Lecturer // 2017-2018

Current Projects

  • "Beyond The MSM: Understanding the rise of alternative online media" (2019-2022) - Research Associate 

Completed Projects

  • "The Participatory, Communicative, and Organisational Dimensions of Public-Making: Public Engagement and The Development of Autonomous Vehicles in the United Kingdom" (2014-2019) - Doctoral Research
  • "Primary Definers Now" (2016-2018) - Research Assistant

See details here.