Call For Papers | The 2023 Forum on Image Studies and Global Communication


 The 2023 Forum on Image Studies and Global Communication

Call for Full Papers & Panels

 Theme:  Online Media and Image Studies Under Conflicts

July 2, 2023

Shanghai International Studies University



Most global communication occurs via images.  Images about foreign nations and peoples, cities of diversified cultures, enterprises and products imported from elsewhere in the world,  have already penetrated in our daily life.  As W. J. Thomas. Mitchell claimed, images are abstract and reside in a people’s consciousness.  It is media that materialize images into pictures, and transmit them in specific global communication contexts. In the past decades, online media have significantly changed the nature of images.  The digitization of image communication is changing the foundation for most global collaborations or conflicts, in global politics, global businesses or global cultural exchanges.

Online media, news sites, messaging apps have become common ways people learn about the world and other racial groups.   However, the news and postings on these online media may exacerbate conflicts through emotional, impulsive and sensational postings and comments.  They may also help in reducing international conflicts by finding common interests and success of international collaborations and learn about how other nations deal with the similar problems such as climate change, environmental protection, public health issues (such as COVID-19).  Governments, cities, news organizations, NGOs, businesses and individuals can all play a role in promoting peace or exacerbating conflicts via digital sharing of institutional and personal experience in global communication.

Within this context, the conference intends to draw insights from multiple disciplines and explore the dynamic relations between image studies and global communication in the digital era, with the 2023 theme on Online Media and Image Studies Under Conflicts. We welcome individual articles submissions and panel proposals related to (but not limited to) the following topics.


1. Image of global conflicts as portrayed in online media and their impacts

2. National images, city images or images of smaller-scale places on digital platforms and their impacts on global spheres including diplomacy and cultures

3. Images about foreign governments and racial groups in global online media and their impacts on global communication order

4. Images of global corporation, products or brands on digital platforms and their impacts on global trade

5. Cyber cultures and artificial intelligence such as virtual artists, avatars, AI agents in global communication

6. Images and tactics of global news organizations (especially in social media) in the contexts of global conflicts 

7. Images and roles of global NGOs (e.g., climate change, environmental protection, public health) in promoting peace and global conflicts such as the Russia-Ukraine war

8. Images and roles of individual users from different cultures and races on digital platforms in global communication

9. The effect of different narratives and discourses on perception of foreign countries or racial groups in the context of global conflicts

10. Research method innovation about online media and global image studies

11. Comparative studies related with global image studies on digital media platforms



Full paper submissions are to be in English and no longer than 25 pages of text.  


Paper format please refer to the OMGC citation style at

The deadline for paper submission is April 15, 2023.  Please submit the papers to  Subject:  2023 Forum Papers Submission


We also welcome panel proposals related to the above topics under image studies and global communication.  The deadline for panel proposal submission is May 15, 2023.  Please submit the panel proposals between 300-500 words to  Subject:  2023 Forum Panel Submission



All submitted papers will be peer-reviewed anonymously. Authors of accepted papers will be notified no later than May 15. Top student themed session paper award recipients will receive a cash award (1st place RMB2,000, second place RMB1,200 and third place RMB600) and free accommodation provided by SISU.  Student papers must only have students as authors.


The faculty themed session paper award recipients will receive a cash award (1st place RMB3000, second place RMB1800, and third place RMB1200) and a travel grant to the conference up to RMB6,000. Free hotel accommodation will be provided by SISU for up to one hotel room for authors of each award-winning paper.  Faculty-student collaboration will count as faculty paper no matter the faculty is the lead author or not.


Apart from top faculty and student paper awards, this conference will encourage international collaboration with an international collaboration paper award of either faculty-faculty collaboration, student-student collaboration or faculty-student collaboration.  Recipients of the award must be accepted papers co-authored by faculty members or students in different institutions in two or more countries.  The award-winning paper will receive RMB1800 cash award and up to four authors will receive free hotel accommodation provided by SISU.  The cash award can be on top of a faculty paper or a student paper award.


Winners of the faculty and student paper awards as well as the international collaboration award will give Online Media and Global Communication the first right of refusal in publishing the paper.   It is expected that the papers will be published either in the winter issue of 2023 or spring 2024.


The conference will also offer free accommodation for up to four members of each of the accepted panel proposals in Shanghai. 


The main conference will be on July 2, 2023, with a Journal Editors and Reviewers Symposium and parallel presentation sessions. The symposium will include dialogues between Chinese journal and English language SSCI journal editors/review board members who are also editorial board members of Online Media and Global Communication on topics about promoting communication scholarship across nations.  


On July 3, there will be a graduate forum for Chinese students at the same venue.