As the end of the semester approaches, JMSC staff are busy attending conferences and presenting papers.
Director of Public Health Media Project and Assistant Professor, Thomas Abraham, has been speaking and publicising the JMSC’s work in health and risk communication in a number of places over the last few months. Abraham worked as Head of News in the Director’s Office at the World Health Organisation last year while on sabbatical, mainly covering H1N1, commonly known as Swine Flu. He has a strong interest in the reporting of public health, and teaches Reporting Health and Medicine at the JMSC.
Abraham spoke at a meeting of influenza experts at the World Health Organisation’s regional headquarters in New Delhi in August and at the European Health Forum in Gastein, Austria in October, an annual meeting of European health policy makers.
Other conferences he has attended include the First Asia Pacific Emerging Infectious Disease Risk Communicators Forum in Bangkok in September, where he spoke to communication specialists from UN agencies in the region on the lessons of the H1N1 pandemic. In the same month, Abraham presented a paper at a workshop on Global Health Security organised at Sheffield University, England by the UK Political Studies Association.
Abraham attended a workshop last week at Robert Black College about emerging strategic research themes in communication sciences and, on December 12, he will be speaking at the European Vaccine Conference in Stockholm on communicating the risk of vaccines.
“These events help to establish the JMSC’s role as a leading centre for health risk communication research and training in the region,” said Abraham. “The public health communication programme at the JMSC is the only one of its kind in Asia, and this is receiving increasing global recognition. We have been approached by UN organizations to help with research and strategic communication planning for risk communication.”
Director of the JMSC, Professor Ying Chan, attended the international conference Enhancing Learning Experiences in Higher Education at HKU last week. Chan presented a study titled Experiential Learning for Professional Development in Journalism and Media Studies, which was based on a one-week reporting trip that she made earlier this year with four students to Beijing to cover the annual meeting of the National People’s Conference.
Early last week, Professor Chan also attended the World Economic Forum’s Summit on the Global Agenda in Dubai as a member of the Council on Informed Societies. This conference aimed to find new ideas to improve the world and look for the latest global trends and risks, while also finding ways to solve the world’s problems.
Associate Professor, Miklos Sukosd, presented a paper on the media and the environment at a conference called Internationalising International Communication at City University of Hong Kong, last weekend. The conference aimed to look at and understand the ‘extent of de-westernisation’ in media studies and to look at future ways of studying the media. Sukosd teaches Reporting the Environment at the JMSC.