AoIR2024 Conference Committee

Dr. Ysabel Gerrard (she/her), #AoIR2024 Local Conference Chair, is a Senior Lecturer in Digital Communication in the Department of Sociological Studies, University of Sheffield. Uniting her research is an interest in how young people – particularly those with vulnerabilities and/or stigmatised identities – use and experience social media. Ysabel has published this work in journals like New Media and Society and Internet Policy Review, and has a manuscript under contract with the University of California Press.

Ysabel has attended AoIR conferences and participated in the reviewing process since 2017 and is delighted to be involved in AoIR2024!”

Lianrui Jia, #AoIR2024 Programme Chair,  is a Lecturer at the University of Sheffield in the Department of Sociological Studies. Her research interests include political economies of communication, platform studies, and media policy and governance. Her work has been published in Media, Culture & Society, International Communication Gazette, Internet Policy Review, Internet Histories, among others. She is currently working on a book project on the topic of financialization of the internet in China. She serves on the editorial boards of Journal of Cultural Economy and Journal of Digital Media and Policy.


Dr Ruth A Deller is a Reader in Media and Communication at Sheffield Hallam University, UK, where she is also the Ethics Chair for the Communication and Culture Research Institute. Her research interests are diverse, with a particular interest in research ethics, social justice and safer spaces, marginalised identity groups, fan and audience studies and social media communities. She is the author of Reality Television: The TV Phenomenon that Changed the World (Emerald, 2020) and has published in journals including Participations, the International Journal of Communication, the European Journal of Communication Studies, Transformative Works and Cultures and Celebrity Studies.


Tim Highfield is Lecturer in Digital Media and Society at the University of Sheffield, where he is also the Director of the Digital Society Network within the Faculty of Social Sciences. His research explores critical everyday interventions and implications of digital media. He is the author of Social Media and Everyday Politics (Polity, 2016) and co-author of Instagram: Visual Social Media Cultures (with Tama Leaver and Crystal Abidin; Polity, 2020).


Preeti Raghunath is a Lecturer in Digital Media and Society at the University of Sheffield, UK. She is currently developing her research on historicising the making of the global data economy by pursuing two interlinked strands of inquiry: histories of imperial datafication and indentureship, which she reads alongside contemporary transnational data industries and data work as seen in India. She is a Co-Investigator on an Industry SEED Project (2023) looking at volunteer-driven data governance of community platforms in Sri Lanka, with colleagues at Monash University, Australia. She previously conducted a media policy ethnography across Sri Lanka, Nepal, India and Bangladesh, available as Community Radio Policies in South Asia: A Deliberative Policy Ecology Approach (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020). She is currently co-editing A Media Anthropology of India, forthcoming with Routledge.