Sep 17 2014 - Sep 20 2014

Roskilde, Denmark (Sept. 17-18) and Malmö, Sweden (Sept. 19-20)


"Is gaining voice enough - enough for society to change, enough for the material conditions we live under to improve, and for other visions of society to thrive?"

This is the core question to be explored by participants in the fourth annual communication for development (C4D) event arranged by Ørecomm, a centre run by researchers at Malmö University and Roskilde University who are dedicated to C4D research. Merged this year with Roskilde University's biannual scientific conference, Sunrise, the 4-day event is a mixture of academic conference and cultural festival; it is open to anyone with an interest in the relationship between media, communication, and social change. In particular, it is intended for those wondering about how "voice" and the concepts related to it (e.g., participation, agency, narrative, and civic engagement) relate directly to critical "matters" like life conditions, health services, employment, education, and environment.

As detailed in the programme schedule, Voice & Matter will offer a mix of keynotes, panel discussions, paper presentations, workshops, and film screenings. As an example of the latter (see the film trailer, below), one screening will be that of GRINGO TRAILS, a feature-length documentary that "takes you through the trails of the Bolivian jungle to the party beaches in Thailand and from the deserts of Timbuktu, Mali, to the breathtaking beauty of Bhutan, revealing the complex relationships between colliding cultures: The host countries hungry for financial security and the tourists who provide it in their quest for authentic experiences....GRINGO TRAILS show the unanticipated impact of tourism on cultures, economies, and the environment, tracing some stories over 30 years."

As of July 2014, almost 30 speakers had been accepted to present papers during the conference. For instance, one of the keynote speakers, Andrea Cornwall, is Professor of Anthropology and Development in the School of Global Studies, University of Sussex (in the United Kingdom - UK); she specialises in the anthropology of democracy, citizen participation, participatory research, gender, and sexuality. Linje Manyozo will be one of the speakers participating in the panel "ICT4D and Citizen Engagement". A Lecturer at UK's London School of Economics and Political Science, he has taught development communication in South Africa and Malawi. More information about the speakers will be posted on the Voice & Matter website during the summer.

This website also offers practical details such as the fact that the first two days of the conference take place at Roskilde University, about 20 minutes by train outside Copenhagen, Denmark, with an added 15 minutes walking distance from the train station. The second half of the conference, at the School of Arts and Communication at the Faculty for Culture and Society (K3) in southern Sweden, which is about 30 minutes by train from Copenhagen, Denmark, with an added 5 minutes walking distance from Malmö [Sweden's] Central Station.

Click here for information on fees and in order to register.

During Voice & Matter, you will find a public live-stream from the event on this page.