20152019
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Personal profile

Research interests

My research draws on media studies, critical theory, cultural studies, and science and technology studies.  I have conducted ethnographic research into the use of new media technologies such as iPads and other tablet computers, by scientists working in fields such as chemistry, genetics, neuroscience and biology. My research focuses on everyday practices related to digital media, and seeks to critique ways in which media technologies are involved in the production and maintenance of identities. I also examine ways in which new media technologies such as Virtual Reality, Immersive Tech and 5G come to be defined in certain ways - as good, bad, exciting, dangerous or perhaps all of these things at once. 

Supervisory Interests

I'm interested in supervising research that makes connections between the fields of media studies and science and technology studies.

Scholarly biography

My BA and MA studies in Media, Cultural Studies and Critical Theory (University of Nottingham) led me to develop an interest in technoscientific ideologies. My PhD research (University of Sussex) focused on the use of new media technologies in the expert context of the science lab. This ethnographic research in a variety of science labs showed how scientists used and discussed tablet computers and other ‘everyday’ technologies in ways that helped maintain their own sense of identity as expert technology users. Developing these ideas, I also research the cultural and political contexts which lead to new media technologies being adopted in academic and commercial institutions.

Approach to teaching

I have taught on a range of undergraduate courses at Sussex and Brighton, with a particular focus on digital media studies. I have also developed and taught on Widening Participation courses, which aim to introduce university study to school and college students who may not have considered this option. My PGCert in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education focused on inclusivity in assessment, with the aim of ensuring that we allow students of all backgrounds, experiences and identities to excel at university. I am a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, University of Sussex

Master, University of Nottingham

Bachelor, University of Nottingham

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Research Output 2015 2019

Problematising Media Language

Burns, R., Jul 2019.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearch

language
student
experience
Teaching
teacher

The Performative Emergence of 5G as an Unreal Object

Burns, R. & Kant, T., May 2019.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review

social media
anxiety
surveillance
Internet
political movement

Contributing, But Not Belonging: Lab apps and the politics of exclusion from communities of expertise

Burns, R., Jan 2016.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review

expertise
exclusion
politics
community
management

Ruthlessly Imagined Communicative Futures

Burns, R., Nov 2016.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review

communication
present
discourse

Next-Generation Affordances

Burns, R., Jan 2015.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractResearchpeer-review

Activities 2017 2017

Digital Culture Meets Data: Critical Approaches

Ryan Burns (Organiser)
6 Nov 20177 Nov 2017

Activity: EventsConference