Sarah Maltby
Senior Lecturer In Media & Communication (Media and Film)
E:
T: +44 (0)1273 877855


Research

My core academic interests centre upon the intersection between contemporary military practice and media/digital media practice. This includes the tactical and strategic role of mediated information in the implementation of security provision, and representations of conflict in military, journalistic and artistic output.  

 

War and Media Network

I am the Founder and Co-ordinator of The War and Media Network, an international and multi-disciplinary online resource and networking forum that aims to promote productive dialogue between academics and practitioners interested in the intersection between war, terrorism and the media, and currently has over 350 members worldwide. 

 

Media, War and Conflict Journal

I am co-Editor of Media, War & Conflict is a major international, peer-reviewed journal that maps the shifting arena of war, conflict and terrorism in an intensively and extensively mediated age. It explores cultural, political and technological transformations in media-military relations, journalistic practices, new media, the arts, and their impact on publics, policy, and outcomes of warfare. The journal bridges arts and humanities, communications, political science, sociology, history, and other disciplines.

 

Recent Research


The D.U.N Project : Defence, Uncertainty and 'New Media'. Mapping social media in strategic communications

From June 2013 to June 2016 I was Principal Investigator for the DUN Project. I am currently engaged in producing a number of publication and impact outputs from this project. 

The DUN Project was jointly commissioned by The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) Futures and Innovation Domain and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). It was funded as part of the £2.1 million Science and Security Programme funded under the RCUK Global Uncertainties Programme where new research is being
commissioned to develop greater understanding of how developments in science and technology (S&T) will present opportunities and threats to future UK defence and security.

The main aim of the DUN Project was to offer a comprehensive understanding of social media as both a tool for strategic communication and a tool for uncertainty. It did this by interrogating the ways in which social media is perceived, organized, managed and responded to by defence actors operating within the strategic environment.

In the context of evolving social media use in defence, the project sought to ask what lessons have been learnt, and should be learnt, in order to avoid strategic surprise. In this sense, the project spoke directly to recommendations in the Blackett Review regarding the need to better identify, assess and manage risk in defence.

 

Present Pasts: The 30th anniversary of the Falklands War

From October 2011 to November 2012 I was Principal Investigator for 'Present Pasts' where I conducted ethnography in the Falkland Islands with with the British military, Falklands war veterans, government representatives (both Falklands and UK government) the media and Falkland Islanders. 'Present Pasts' explored the ways in which the Falklands have been historicised, negotiated and rationalised in the public domain (by all actors involved) but particularly during the 30th Anniversary of the Falklands war as a site of commemoration and memorialisation; as a site of contested political ownership; and as a site of media management. 

You can read more about this research in my monograph 'Remembering the Falklands War: Media, Memory, Identity' published by Palgrave Macmillan in the summer of 2016. 

This book offers an empirically informed understanding of how identity and agency become wholly embedded within practices of media-remembering. It draws upon data collected from the British military, the BBC and Falkland Islanders during the 30th Anniversary of the Falklands war to uniquely offer multiple perspectives on a single ‘remembering’ phenomenon. The study offers an analysis of the convergence, interconnectedness and interdependence of media and remembering, specifically the production, interpretation and negotiation of remembering in the media ecology. In so doing it not only examines the role of media in the formation and sustaining of collective memory but also the ways those who remember or are remembered in media texts become implicated in these processes.