Meet The Team

Mapping impactful media literacy practices involve the dedicated efforts of several people from the research team to the advisory board and the designers. Each person has contributed their best efforts and expertise to make this project possible. This project brought together a diverse group of researchers, educators, professionals, and activists. You can read more about them below.

Lead Research Team

The research team make-up the core group of investigators within the project. They focus on research design and implementation, as well as producing the final reports for the project.

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Srividya Ramasubramanian - CO-PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR

Srividya is the Newhouse Endowed Chair Professor at Syracuse University. She is the founding director of the Difficult Dialogues Project and CODE^SHIFT. Her research interests include global issues of social justice and media, media effects and identity, and diversity.

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Melissa is an associate professor and director of undergraduate studies in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at Iowa. Her research focuses on social media, international communications, and news literacy, particularly interested in Africa. Melissa has researched in Kenya, Ghana, and Burundi.

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Patrick R. Johnson - Researcher

Patrick is a doctoral student in the school of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Iowa. His research focuses on news literacy, media ethics, the evolving roles and values of the journalism professions, and educational training, development, and acculturation of high school and collegiate journalists. Patrick is a former high school journalism teacher and worked as the mentor program chair for the Journalism Education Association.

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PAUL MIHAILIDIS (USA, Austria) is a professor of civic media and journalism, and assistant dean in the school of communication at Emerson College (Boston, USA). He is founding program director of the MA in Media Design, Senior Fellow of the Emerson Engagement Lab, and faculty chair and director of the Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change (Austria). He has a doctorate in journalism and media studies from the University of Maryland.

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Bobbie Foster Bhusari - Research Manager

Bobbie is a Ph.D. candidate at the Phillip Merril College of Journalism at the University of Maryland. Before joining the 2017 cohort at Maryland, she worked as the Center for Ethics in Journalism assistant director at the University of Arkansas. Her research interests include Internet memes, digital culture, LGBTQIA media, and cultural heritage studies.

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Emily Riewestahl - Researcher

Emily is a doctoral student in the Newhouse School of Public Communication at Syracuse University. Her research explores how media is used to perpetuate and resist oppression systems through the lens of critical media effects, media literacy, and trauma-informed approaches.

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Sydney Angove - Researcher

Sydney is a Masters’s student at Emerson College studying Media Design. Her research interests include media literacy, new media effects, and user experience, emphasizing civic engagement and social justice.

Design Team

The design team consists of a group of professional graphic designers and developers who work to pull together the final product for the research. Many of the team members are also graduate students interested in using their professional talents to integrate social justice and media literacy initiatives within their respective fields

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Sumali Dey - Designer

Sumali is a socially engaged multimedia artist and civic designer dedicated to using art to empower marginalized communities and creatively reimagining feminist frameworks to promote intersectionality and social justice. She graduated with a Master of Arts degree in Media Design at Emerson College and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from The City College of New York. She specializes in graphic design, visual arts, marketing, and branding.

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Johnny Richardson - Lead Developer

Johnny is a web and games full-stack engineer. He is the Lead Developer at the Engagement Lab with previous stints at startups and a major marketing firm. Johnny is passionate about work centering around using games and web tech to help solve problems in democracy and governance, global health, media literacy, and equity and accessibility. His constant goal is to ship world-class software and games and broaden the demographics of developers and their users and players. He lives in Boston with his wife and dog.

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Mikaela Joyce - Designer

Mikaela Joyce is a digital creator; specializing in technology design and the media arts. Her practice focuses on human-centered design, emergent media, and developing digital platforms for learning and community. Mikaela completed her Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies & Studio Art with a minor in Art History at Pitzer College. She is currently a Master of Arts candidate in the Media Design program at Emerson College. She is also a fellow on the Intersections Project at the People’s Collaborative Governance Network, an initiative developed in the MIT Civic Media Co-Design Studio.

Advisory Board

This project includes oversight from a diverse group of scholars assembled to guide the researchers and assembly of the final project.

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Erica Scharrer

Her research interests include media content, media effects, media literacy, and opinions of media. In particular, her work focuses on gender and/or aggression.

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Lynn Schofield Clark

Lynn is a professor and chair of the Department of Media, Film, and Journalism Studies at the University of Denver. She is also Director of the Estlow International Center for Journalism and New Media. Her research interests include the ways digital and mobile media change the lives of diverse adolescents and work in the areas of family media studies, community-engaged research, and the mediatization of world religions.

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Kimberly Moffitt

Kimberly is currently serving as interim dean of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences at UMBC. Before assuming this role, she was director of the Language, Literacy and Culture doctoral program, a professor of communication/media studies, and an affiliate professor of Africana Studies. A media critic whose research focuses on mediated representations of marginalized groups and the politicized nature of Black hair and the body, Her latest work explores the black body in Disney programming and the impact of colorism on Black teens.

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Aaliyah El-Amin

Aaliyah is a lecturer on education at Harvard Graduate School of Education. Her research focuses on providing the tools, and knowledge educators need to disrupt systems of oppression. Her specific research interests include liberatory education models, social justice schooling, critical pedagogy, and youth participatory action research.

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Sangita Shresthova

Sangita is the Director of Research of the Civic Paths Group based at the University of Southern California. Her work focuses on intersections among online learning, popular culture, performance, new media, politics, and globalization. She is also one of the authors of Popular Culture and the Civic Imagination: Case Studies of Creative Change (2020) and of By Any Media Necessary: The New Activism of Youth (2016), both published by NYU Press.

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Theresa Redmond

Theresa Redmond is an associate professor at Appalachian State University, where she teaches in Media Studies and Teacher Education programs. Her scholarship comprises a hybrid research agenda that attends to complex intersections of multiple professional fields, including communications, media studies, literacy studies, teacher education, curriculum studies, and the arts.

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Lalitha Vasudevan

Lalitha is a professor of technology and education and director of the Media and Social Change Lab at Teachers College at Columbia University. Her research interest includes new media, adolescent literacies, media literacies, multimodal storytelling, and anthropology of education.

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Seth Ashley

Seth is an associate professor and arbiter advisor for the Department of Communication and Media at Boise State University. His research interests include news and media literacy, media and democracy, media sociology, communication law and policy, media history, political communication, and civic engagement. In particular, his work examines the role of media in a democracy.

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Christopher Harris

Christopher is a professor and department chair in for social sciences and business at Nevada State College. His research interests include fine-de-siècle rap music and neo-soul, critical pedagogy, media portrayals of ethnicity and race. His research focuses on the interplay and relationship between power and discourse in contemporary society and the media. You can read more about his work by clicking the link above.


The project is supported by the National Association of Media Literacy Education, whose leaders help coordinate our process.

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Sherri Hope Culver - Project Manager

Sherri Hope Culver serves as Director of the Center for Media and Information Literacy (CMIL) at Temple University, where she is an associate professor in the Klein College of Media and Communication. Sherri's teaching and consulting focuses on media literacy and media institutions, emphasizing children's media content. She currently serves as vice-chair of the UNESCO International Steering Committee for the Global Media and Information Literacy Alliance (GAPMIL). In addition, Sherri was a 3-term president of the National Association for Media Literacy Education.

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Michelle Ciulla Lipkin - Executive Director

Michelle Ciulla Lipkin is the Executive Director of the National Association for Media Literacy Education. As Executive Director, Michelle has helped NAMLE grow to be the preeminent media literacy education association in the U.S. She launched the first-ever Media Literacy Week in the U.S., developed strategic partnerships with companies such as Trend Micro, Nickelodeon, and Twitter, and restructured the organization's governance and membership. In addition, she has overseen four national conferences and done countless appearances at conferences and media regarding the importance of media literacy education.

Special Thanks

Many scholars have contributed to the project without a formal connection to the grant. Their work provided fresh perspectives and needed insight into the fields of media literacy and social justice.

Mapping Impactful Media Literacy Practices

Initial support for the research project is made possible through the National Association for Media Literacy Education and Facebook. To ensure the independence and integrity of this research effort, NAMLE maintains full authority regarding project strategy, budget, personnel decisions, or research activities. Facebook has no control over the research design, methodology, analysis, or findings. NAMLE and any research authors will maintain exclusive copyright over all products and freely disseminate those products to advance the media literacy field.

For inquiries with NAMLE, contact Michelle Ciulla Lipkin: mciullalipkin[at]
For inquiries regarding the Mapping Impactful Media Literacy Project, contact Paul Mihailidis: paul_mihailidis[at]

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