The Wee Kim Wee School of Communication & Information is the first in Southeast Asia to host the leading lights in communications at the annual conference of the International Communication Association.
Over five days in June, some of the best papers on communication and media from top scholars around the world were presented at the 2010 conference of the International Communication Association.
The conference was organised by the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication & Information, which had the privilege of being the first in Southeast Asia and only the second in Asia to host the prestigious event. More than 1, 500 media and communications academics, journalists, and business, government and communication leaders weighed in on the conference theme of “Matters of Communication: Political, Cultural and Technological Challenges”.
The main conference was held from 22 to 26 June, following a series of 11 pre-conference sessions on 21 June. The highlights of the pre-conferences included health communication campaigns hosted by the Health Promotion Board and the Wee Kim Wee School; and the “Chindia” challenge, which explored the transformation of communication and media in China and India, two rising giants in Asia. The annual Asian Media Information and Communication Centre conference also ran concurrently at Suntec City over three days.Mega meet scores
“The International Communication Association holds its annual conference outside America once every four years. It is an honour for NTU to host this in Singapore. This is like Singapore hosting the World Cup, an opportunity that comes once in a lifetime,” said Prof Ang Peng Hwa, the Chairman of the conference organising committee and former Chair of the Wee Kim Wee School. “This conference further cements the reputation of the Wee Kim Wee School as the premier communication school in Asia, NTU as a world class university, and Singapore as a global city for communication and information.”
The development of communication and media studies in Asia is reflected in the growing number of distinguished communications scholars in the region. More students are also opting for communications training in Singapore at NTU. Said Assoc Prof Benjamin Detenber, Chair of the Wee Kim Wee School: “The number of applicants to our school has increased by almost 50 percent over the past five years, rising from about 900 in 2005 to more than 1,300 this year. We are also attracting more postgraduate students from overseas. As a field of study, it is an exciting time for communication research, especially with the advent of new media.”
At the conference, Prof Eddie Kuo, one of the first local academics to indigenise communication studies in Asia, chaired a forum, “Whither Asian Communication Research?”. The forum was sponsored by the Asian Journal of Communication, which Prof Kuo co-founded in 1990. As the founding dean of the Wee Kim Wee School, Prof Kuo has played a seminal role in the growth of the communications field in Singapore and Asia. He will be retiring and was honoured at the conference for his achievements in establishing the journal and shaping communications education and research.Creative fusion
Among the events organised on the sidelines of the conference was a new media showcase in the form of an open-space exhibition of multi-platform artworks offering unique insights into Singapore and Southeast Asian culture. The exhibition was jointly conceptualised by professors from NTU’s School of Art, Design & Media and the Wee Kim Wee School. New media is one of the key thrusts of the university.
Founded 60 years ago, the International Communication Association is the largest international academic association for scholars in the study, teaching and application of communication. It has about 4,300 members from more than 80 countries worldwide, comprising communications scholars and practitioners as well as those working in government, business law, medicine and other professions. The association is also a non-governmental organisation with official ties to the United Nations.© Corporate Communications Office