Students offer insights on promotional comms at 3rd-annual conference

This year’s Promotional Communications Annual Conference was the biggest ever with some ‘thought provoking’ and ‘challenging’ insights from the 35 students who presented.

On Wednesday, 15 May, 35 advertising, marketing, and public relations final year students presented their dissertation research at the third-annual student conference of the Corporate and Marketing Communications Academic Group of The Media School. The event, held at the university’s Executive Business Centre, attracted some 80 students, academic staff, alumni, and industry professionals.

“I thought the best papers could have claimed space in some international conferences,” said Prof Barry Richards of CMC.

Dr Heather Savigny, a new colleague in CMC, agreed saying: “The quality of what I have seen in these dissertations is some of the best I have seen… It is really inspiring to be part of this team!”

CMC students can choose to write a traditional dissertation of 10,000 words or write a research paper in the style of an 8,000-word journal article and deliver a 20-minute paper at the student conference. The 35 students who presented at the conference (named below with the title of their paper) represent 17 per cent of the dissertation students on the three degree programmes. That’s the highest proportion of student take-up of this option for the dissertation.

Students’ research asked questions about the role that promotional communications plays in society, politics and culture. The top papers, decided by some of the industry and academic guests at the conference, were by Anna Blloshmi (BAAMC), Elinor Farn (BAPR), and Brodie McIntosh (BAM). They were applauded for their work having strong theoretical underpinning, sophisticated methodology, and applications for industry, respectively.

“I thought it was excellent and thought provoking and was impressed with all the papers I saw – so well done to everyone concerned,” said Tony Lewis, Managing Director of Vision One Research, a London-based research agency.

Speaking on behalf of himself and a colleague, James Spinks of Grapevine Telecom said: “It was an engaging day with plenty of interesting and challenging content and we appreciate the opportunity to attend.”

The conference was created three years ago as a platform for students to share their dissertation to a wider audience. It is also an excellent way to showcase research-led teaching.

“Research is about furthering knowledge, taking thinking forward,” said Dr Dan Jackson, one of the organisers for the event. He went on to say that having an audience is key to that mission.

Dan, Dr Richard Scullion, Dr Carrie Hodges, and Dr Janice Denegri-Knott received BU Fusion Funding (an internal fund to support excellence in teaching, research and professional practice) to support this year’s conference and to develop a journal, which will launch with the top papers from this year’s dissertations. The inaugural issue of The Journal of Promotional Communication is forthcoming this summer.

After the first issue, the journal will accept submissions from undergraduate and postgraduate students at BU and beyond. The journal will represent a variety of disciplines, such as marketing, advertising, PR theory, consumer culture and behaviour, political communications, media studies, sociology, cultural studies, and management.

2 Responses to “Students offer insights on promotional comms at 3rd-annual conference”

  1. Becky Jenkins's avatar Becky Jenkins

    Sounds like a successful and thought provoking conference. I am sorry to have missed it. Looking forward to the first edition of the JPC being published!

  2. Paul Bolls's avatar Paul Bolls

    What a great conference! Would love to do something similar with my research lab at the Missouri School of Journalism. Your colleague Dr. Ana Adi was a student here for her masters and I loved working with her.


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