Advisory Board

Dr. Kaveh Abbasian - University of Roehampton, London


Dr. Kaveh Abbasian studied film first at the Tehran University of Art and then at the Roehampton University of London where in 2019 he finished his practice-based PhD project titled Chronicle of Triumph: Iranian National Identity and Revolutionary Shi’ism in Morteza Avini’s Sacred Defence Documentaries. Kaveh has received multiple awards for his academic achievements; these include but are not limited to University of Roehampton MA Scholarship, Techne AHRC PhD Scholarship, and AHRC International Placement Scheme (IPS) the last of which resulted in a four-month-long research fellowship at the John W. Kluge Center of the Library of Congress in 2016. 

Kaveh is a practicing filmmaker with a focus on essay documentaries. His works have been screened in many film festivals and exhibitions around the world such as the Venice Biennale and Havana International Film Festival. His upcoming feature-length essay documentary Triumph will be released in Autumn 2020. He currently works as a visiting lecturer at the University of Roehampton and as an associate lecturer at Birkbeck, University of London

Kaveh is also Director of Programming for the London Kurdish Film Festival.

Dr. Penny Chalk - University of Portsmouth​


Penny Chalk currently teaches Film and Media Studies at the University of Portsmouth. She has a BA in English and Film Studies, an MA in Film and Television Studies, and PhD in Film History and Adaptation Studies from the University of Portsmouth’s School of Film, Media and Creative Writing. Her thesis was an intertextual study of film production during the Hollywood Studio Era incorporating literary studies, film history and adaptation studies. In 2019 Penny received the The Philip M. Taylor IAMHIST-Routledge Prize for the Best Article by a New Scholar for her article ‘Edgar Dale’s Film Appreciation Programme: An Early Education in Adaptation’, published in the Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television. Conference papers she has delivered include ‘Animating Phiz: An examination of the use of Victorian Illustration in MGM’s David Copperfield (1934),’ at the Association of Adaptation Studies and ‘Gothic Transmutation: How Frankenstein was made of many parts,’ at the British Association of Film Television and Screen Studies conference.

Professor Bill Cope - University of Illinois


Dr Bill Cope is a Professor in the Department of Education Policy, Organization & Leadership, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA and an Adjunct Professor at Charles Darwin University, Australia. He is also a director of Common Ground Research Networks, a not-for-profit publisher and developer of “social knowledge” technologies.

He is a former First Assistant Secretary in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in the Australian Government and Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs. His research interests include theories and practices of pedagogy, cultural and linguistic diversity, and new technologies of representation and communication.

His recent research has focused on the development of digital writing and assessment technologies, with the support of a number of major grants from the US Department of Education, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the National Science Foundation. The result has been the CGScholar multimodal writing and assessment environment. Among his publications are edited volumes on The Future of the Academic Journal and e-Learning Ecologies, and a book co-authored with Kalantzis and Magee, Towards a Semantic Web: Connecting Knowledge in Academic Research.

PhD Candidate Sonia Estima - University of Illinois, Urban-Champaign


Born in Brazil, Sonia moved to the United States after completing her BA in History. She currently lives in Monterey, on the California Central Coast, where she is an Associate Professor at the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center.

Sonia is a doctoral candidate at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign.  She is exploring the role of multimodality in academia and questioning what counts as academic inquiry. Her dissertation specifically looks at multimodal doctoral dissertations, trying to expand the notion of the traditional dissertation format.  She aims to provide a framework to others who wish to pursue multimodal research; and perhaps help make academic work more accessible to a wider audience, who may otherwise not be able to consume academic research.  

Dr. Ruth Farrar - University of Bath-Spa


Dr. Ruth Farrar is a Reader in Creative Media & Enterprise at Bath Spa University. She is also a filmmaker, sound artist and Director of Artswork Media: Bath Spa University’s media production company. She is the Founder of Shextreme Film Festival: the world’s first film festival celebrating women in adventure. Ruth has produced media for clients including VogueTwentieth Century Fox and Discovery. Her award-winning films have been screened at British Film Institute and film festivals from California to Cannes. Ruth’s new media commissions include an interactive storytelling app for Carnegie Hall in New York.

PhD Candidate Catherine Gough-Brady - RMIT University,



Catherine Gough-Brady is an award-winning producer and director of six ABC TV documentary series. Catherine created 11 radio features for ABC Radio National. Her work has been funded by various organisations including Film Victoria, Seoul Film Commission and the Australia Council. Catherine is currently a PhD Candidate at RMIT University. She has published in ScreenworksMedia Practice and Education[In}transitionThe International Journal of Creative Media Research and written a chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Ethnographic Film and Video on the emergent use of video as a method of academic discourse.

Dr. Janet Harris - Cardiff University (JOMEC)


An experienced documentary producer/director, having worked for many years at the BBC and as a freelancer with experience of working in Iraq in war and in post war. Now a senior lecturer at Cardiff University teaching on the MA in international journalism and designer and course leader for the MA in Digital Documentary.  Research interests combine practice and theory, looking at conflict reporting and representation, and VR in N&CA documentary.

Dr. Barbara Henderson - Newcastle University


Barbara Henderson is a former print and BBC journalist who holds a practice-based creative writing PhD, in which her focus was writing for children. Other areas of interest including campaigning and alternative forms of journalism. Recent outputs (apart from published journalism and fiction) include:

“Get Off Your Arse”: singing newspapers and radical choirs in the UK: The Journal of Language and Politics (July 2019);

Pending: Book chapter: ‘Losing on Aggregate: Women Sports Reporters in the UK’ (2020);

Pending: Book chapter on radical alternative journalism for Rowman and Littlefield Experiments/On the Political

series (2020); ‘Subverting the Pyramid’: Writing in Education, February 2014

Reviews, various, for International Research in Children’s Literature and the Journal of Children’s Literature Studies

Reviews, various, for International Research in Children’s Literature and the Journal of Children’s Literature Studies


Cultural Studies Association, Tulane University, New Orleans

Balancing the Mix: Memphis University, USA

Performance and power: Ulster University, Derry/Londonderry, NI

Professor Mary Kalantzis - University of Illinois


Dr Mary Kalantzis is a professor in the Department of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA. From 2006 to 2016, she was Dean of the College of Education at the University of Illinois. Before then, she was Dean of the Faculty of Education, Language and Community Services at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia, and President of the Australian Council of Deans of Education.

She has been a Board Member of Teaching Australia: The National Institute for Quality Teaching and School Leadership, a Commissioner of the Australian Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, Chair of the Queensland Ethnic Affairs Ministerial Advisory Committee, Vice President of the National Languages and Literacy Institute of Australia and a member of the Australia Council’s Community Cultural Development Board.

With Bill Cope, she is co-author or editor of a number of books, including: New Learning: Elements of a Science of Education, Cambridge University Press, 2008 (2nd edition, 2012, also in Spanish and Greek editions, with Chinese, Portuguese and Russian editions in press); Literacies, Cambridge University Press, 2012 (2nd edition, 2016, also in Greek and Spanish Editions, Portuguese in press); A Pedagogy of Multiliteracies, Palgrave, London, 2015; and the two volume grammar of multimodal meaning: Making Sense and Adding Sense, Cambridge University Press, 2020.

Dr Iakovos Pangoloupos - Researcher (InArts) Ionian University

Researcher StoryLab (Skills Training for Democratised Film Industries) Scientific collaborator InArts (Interactive Arts Lab) of Ionian University

Dr. Iakovos Panagopoulos is an award-winning Greek director and researcher, best known for his work Allimonò (2020) and Flickering Souls Set Alight (2019). Iakovos’s pioneering work is a combination of practical filmmaking and academic research. His goal is to narrow the gap between the two. He is directing-writing films and academic research on Media Practice, Film Practice and Film Studies.

His major project so far, Flickering Souls Set Alight (2019), is the cinematographic depiction of his research on ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis). Iakovos’s first degree in Audio Visual Arts at the Ionian University, was followed by an M.A. in Cinematography at Bournemouth University. At 2019 he completed his Ph.D. on the work of Theo Angelopoulos at the University of Central Lancashire. The title of his thesis is: “Reshaping Contemporary Greek Cinema Through a Re-evaluation of the Historical and Political Perspective of Theo Angelopoulos’s Work”.

He is an active researcher, counting numerous international publications. He is an official researcher in StoryLab (Skills Training for Democratised Film Industries) and scientific collaborator in InArts (Interactive Arts Lab) of Ionian University.

Dr. Max Schleser - Swinburne University of Technology


Max Schleser (B.A. Hons, M.A., Ph.D.) is Senior Lecturer in Film and Television and Researcher in the Centre for Transformative Technologies (CTMT) at Swinburne University of Technology (Melbourne, Australia), Adobe Education Leader, Co-Founder of the Mobile Innovation Network & Association ( and Screening Director of the International Mobile Innovation Screening & Festival. Max’s research expertise are Immersive Media and Creative Arts 4.0 with a focus on Cinematic VR and interactive filmmaking. His research explores Screen Production, Emerging Media and Smartphone Filmmaking for community engagement, creative transformation and transmedia storytelling.  Max’s experimental films, moving-image arts and cinematic VR projects are screened at film festivals and exhibited in galleries and museums ( His community engaged documentaries are broadcasted on TV and online (

PhD Candidate Roy Wallace - University of Northampton


Roy is a doctoral candidate completing his PhD thesis which critically examines historical and contemporary debates around documentary theory and practice ‘from documenting subcultures to academic video essay’. He has worked for both BBC and Channel Four Television directing/producing short radio and documentary works and has continued to produce a range of media related projects since graduation from his BA Hons and has been teaching at higher education level on undergraduate and post graduate programmes since 1997. He holds postgraduate qualifications in Fine Art and Education including fellowship of the Higher Education Academy and the Institute of Paralegals.

His passion is independent freelance documentary videomaking with over thirty years’ experience as a media practitioner, musician, experimental artist, sound engineer and photographer engaging in extensive global travel, exhibitions, performance, his practice-based research focuses mainly on critically examining various forms of subcultural activities including experience of ‘live’ recording on location UK, North America, Europe, Jamaica, India and in various television studio environments using a range of creative industries technologies.

Roy is research active and has delivered over fifty academic media research outputs/activities since starting his PhD in 2016. He is currently engaged on a range of community led ‘Changemaker’ projects including radio/webTV/creative industries skills training and will direct another feature length documentary project in Belfast summer 2020.