Jan Jagers   Jelle Mast (CoOrdinator)

Jelle Mast received his PhD in Communication Sciences from the University of Antwerp, Belgium in June 2011, with a doctoral dissertation entitled Reality TV as Popular Hybrid Documentary: Questions of Genre HybridizationDocumentary Values and Ethics

In November 2011, he joined the department of Applied Linguistics at Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Free University Brussels), where he currently works as an Assistant Professor of Journalism Studies. He teaches introductory courses to Journalism Studies and Media Policy, and supervises student dissertations in the Master's Program in Journalism and the Bachelor's Program in Applied Linguistics. As the coordinator of the Brussels Institute for Journalism Studies (BIJU), and an affiliate member of the Visual and Digital Cultures Research Center (ViDi) at the University of Antwerp, his main research interests are in the areas of visual communication, journalism practice, genre hybridization, and professional ethics. Topical foci of his current research projects are, amongst others: visual gatekeeping and the incorporation of user-generated imagery (including for instance amateur images and Islamic State's visual propaganda) by mainstream news media; editorial decision-making and negotiations regarding the use of graphic news images across different types of news media; visual framing of climate change; and hybrid documentary genres such as the animated documentary.

From June 2010 until May 2012, he served as Secretary of the Visual Communication Studies Division of the International Communication Association (ICA), the largest organization in the discipline. Between August-September 2015, he stayed at the School of Journalism of the University of Arizona in Tucson, US, as a visiting (research) scholar in the U.S. State Department's Exchange Visitor Program. 

Jelle Mast has presented his work, amongst others, at the (bi-)annual conferences of the International Communication Association (ICA), the European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA), the Association for the Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS), Visible Evidence, and the International Visual Sociology Association (IVSA). He has published articles in various peer-reviewed journals such as Media, Culture & Society, International Journal of Communication, Digital Journalism, European Journal of Cultural Studies, Sociology Compass, and Tijdschrift voor Communicatiewetenschap. 



   Cara Brems

Cara Brems graduated as a Master of Arts (Linguistics and Literature in Dutch and German) in 2012 at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. She dedicated her thesis to the poetry and musicality in the lyrics of the young Bob Dylan (1962-1966). Subsequently she completed a second master in Journalism Studies at the Erasmushogeschool Brussel, where she specialized in print and online media. For her master thesis, she analysed the anti-Semitic discourse in the German tabloid Der Stürmer.

Currently, Cara is working as a PhD student at the University of Groningen and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. For her research, she examines the way social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter affect journalism practice, news coverage en public participation in the Netherlands and Flanders. The project aims to learn more about the way journalism is shifting from a mass media to a network communication paradigm.



   Roel Coesemans

Roel Coesemans (°1984) is Lecturer in Journalism Studies, Discourse Studies and Dutch Linguistics at the Department of Applied Linguistics, Vrije Universiteit Brussel. His research is situated at the interface of media, language and society.

He studied Germanic Linguistics and Literature at the University of Antwerp, specializing in the languages of English and Dutch (2002-2006). As an exchange student at University College London in 2005, he became fascinated by Relevance Theory, thanks to Deirdre Wilson’s pragmatics courses. This resulted in a MA dissertation comprising a combination of cognitive linguistics and cognitive pragmatics: Scoren met metaforen. Een kritische evaluatie van de conceptuele metafoortheorie [Scoring Metaphors: A Critical Assessment of Conceptual Metaphor Theory]. After a teacher’s degree (2007), he started a PhD at the University of Antwerp under supervision of Prof. Dr. Jef Verschueren. In 2012 he became Doctor of Linguistics and Literature, after successfully defending his PhD dissertation, entitled Interpreting News Discourse on Kenya’s Post-election Crisis: Context, Ideology, and the Pragmatics of National and International Press Coverage. This research consisted of an ethnographically-supported linguistic-pragmatic analysis of newspaper coverage about the Kenyan post-election crisis (2007-2008).

This methodology, characterized by a triangulation of quantitative content analysis and text mining, qualitative discourse analysis and ethnographic fieldwork, was continued in his post-doctoral research at KU Leuven (2012-2015), with a new interest in multimodal meaning making. As a post-doctoral researcher he investigated from a discursive, sociolinguistic perspective journalistic practices at alternative online news media compared to legacy media, focusing on news discourse on social issues (trade union actions) and foreign affairs (e.g. Occupy Wall Street), with special attention for the representation of social actors, discursive strategies and implicit meanings.

Always approaching language phenomena from a functional, linguistic pragmatic perspective, he tries to find out how language works ideologically, i.e. how it is used in specific contexts in our contemporary multicultural information society to generate sociocultural meanings, promote worldviews, construct identities, create relations of power, etc. His current research interests are concentrated on news discourse, ideological aspects of public communication, media representation, trade union language, metaphors, alternative online news media, foreign correspondence and multimodality.



Jan Jagers   Jan Jagers

(°1979) is doctor in de politieke en sociale wetenschappen en zelfstandig journalist. Momenteel schrijft hij vooral voor Knack. Hij promoveerde in 2006 aan de Universiteit Antwerpen op een proefschrift over populisme bij Vlaamse politieke partijen (De Stem van het Volk!, 2006).

Van 2001 tot 2006 werkte hij aan de Universiteit Antwerpen als aspirant van het Fonds voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek – Vlaanderen. Hij maakte er deel uit van de  onderzoeksgroep Media, Middenveld en Politiek. Daar is hij nog altijd aan verbonden.

Naast zijn werk als freelancejournalist doceert hij momenteel journalistiek aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel, vakgroep Toegepaste Taalkunde.

Zijn wetenschappelijke interesse gaat uit naar de driehoeksverhouding tussen publiek, media en politiek.


Koen Lemmens   Koen Lemmens

is doctor in de Rechten. Hij promoveerde in 2003 aan het Europees Universitair Instituut (Firenze) op het proefschrift: La presse et la protection juridique de l'individu: attention aux chiens de garde! Eerder studeerde hij rechten aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Zijn wetenschappelijke interesse gaat uit naar de problematiek van de fundamentele rechten en vrijheden (vrijheid van meningsuiting, persvrijheid, privacybescherming,..), de rol van grondwettelijke hoven in democratische rechtstaten, en de verhouding tussen literatuur en recht. Zijn publicaties situeren zich dan ook voornamelijk op deze domeinen.

Hij is docent mensenrechten aan de KU Leuven (waar hij directeur is van het Leuven Institute for Human Rights and Critical Studies) en aan de EUIC (Venetië). Aan de Vrije Universiteit Brussel doceert hij in de Master Journalistiek het vakonderdeel “Mediarecht”.

Sinds 2003 is hij ook advocaat aan de Brusselse balie, waar hij gespecialiseerd is in procedures bij het Grondwettelijk Hof en het Europees Hof voor de Rechten van de Mens.



     Renée moernaut

Renée Moernaut (°1988) holds a Master of Languages and Linguistics: Dutch-English (Ghent University) and a Master of Journalism (Erasmushogeschool Brussels). Her Master’s Thesis, for which she received the Thesis Award of ‘Stichting Lezen’, dealt with the evolution of the literary supplement of the Flemish newspaper ‘De Standaard’ from 1959 to 2011.

She currently works as a Ph.D student on the project ‘Constructing Climate Change: A Comparative Framing Analysis of Discourses on Climate Change in het Low Countries’. In the context of this project, she is conducting research into the media framing of climate change, identifying differences across media outlets and types, as well as countries ((the northern part of) Belgium (Flanders) and the Netherlands), and different periods in time (within the scope of the last decade). She has a particular interest in the frames distributed by alternative or specialized newspapers, magazines and websites. Next to investigating linguistic frames, she is planning on conducting research into the visualization (i.e., visual frames) of climate change in the media.



Martina Temmerman   Martina Temmerman

Holds a PhD in Germanic languages and literature. Between 1987 and 2000, she worked for the University of Antwerp, where she taught business communication and did research on computer assisted language teaching and professional communication. Since 2000 she is the programme director of the masters in journalism of Vrije Universiteit Brussel (previously Erasmushogeschool Brussel). She teaches linguistic discourse analysis and writing and editing classes for future journalists. Her research interest goes to conversation and discourse analysis of journalistic production, political interviews, the history of women’s magazines and applications of new and social media in journalism.



Bernadette Timmermans   Bernadette Timmermans

(°1959), doctor in de medische wetenschappen en licentiaat in de logopedie en audiologie, doceert stem- en spraakvaardigheid aan het departement  Rits (Erasmushogeschool Brussel) en de vakgroep Toegepaste Taalkunde (Vrije Universiteit Brussel).  Daarnaast doceert ze ook ‘stempreventie’ aan de lerarenopleiding van de VUB (dept IDLO) en is ze als vorser verbonden aan de Universiteit Antwerpen.  De VRT consulteert haar regelmatig in verband met stemadvies voor de microfoon – en schermmedewerkers.



Maaike Van de Voorde   Maaike Van de Voorde

Maaike Van de Voorde is research assistant at the department of Applied Linguistics at the University of Brussels. As a member of the Brussels Institute of Journalism, her research focuses on the linguistic discourse analysis of women’s identities and (partner) relationships in women’s magazines. In 2010, she already carried out the short exploratory research project ‘Wife, partner or soul mate. A critical diachronic analysis of the representation of women in their partner roles in women’s magazines’. This project has led to a number of peer reviewed articles which are to be published in the next two years. In December 2013, Maaike was appointed research assistant at the same department again, where she will complete her research project in the context of a PhD.



Affiliated members

Maaike Van de Voorde   David Domingo

Chair of Journalism at the Department of Information and Communication Sciences at Université Libre de Bruxelles (Brussels). Previously, he was visiting assistant professor at University of Iowa and senior lecturer at Universitat Rovira i Virgili. His research focuses on innovation processes in online communication, with a special interest in the (re)definition of practices and identities involved in news production, circulation and use. He is coauthor of Participatory journalism: guarding open gates at online newspapers (2011) and co-editor of Making Online News (2008 and 2011).



Maaike Van de Voorde   Ria Goris

Ria Goris is lecturer in Journalism at the Erasmushogeschool in Brussels. She has a background as journalist for, among others, Knack, Psychologies and De Standaard. She is co-author of ‘Journalistiek. Inleiding tot het vak’ (LannooCampus, 2012) and published several other books. She conducts research on aspects of working conditions and the way of work in Flemish newsrooms.


Maaike Van de Voorde   FLORENCE LE CAM

Florence Le Cam is chair of Journalism at the Department of Information and Communication Sciences at Université Libre de Bruxelles (Brussels). Her research interests are the professional identities of journalists and the historical construction of the profession. She is the co-author of Changements et permanences du journalisme (2014) and co-editor of the multilingual scientific journal Sur le journalisme/About journalism/Sobre jornalismo.



 Benjamin De Cleen  Lieuwe Kalkhoven

Lieuwe Kalkhoven (1984) is sinds oktober 2009 betrokken bij de Master Politieke Communicatie, eerst als mandaatsassistent (2009-2015) en later als vrijwillig medewerker. Hij studeerde communicatiewetenschappen aan de Universiteit Utrecht (Nederland) en heeft uiteindelijk zijn opleiding kunnen combineren met zijn interesse voor politiek door de Master Politieke Communicatie te volgen in Antwerpen. Na het behalen van zijn diploma is Lieuwe direct in dienst getreden van de master als mandaatsassistent en lid van de onderzoeksgroep Politieke Communicatie.

Momenteel finaliseert hij zijn doctoraatsonderzoek in het domein van de politieke retoriek. Zijn specifieke interesse gaat uit naar politiek taalgebruik, stijlmiddelen, propaganda en populisme.



Maaike Van de Voorde   Ike Picone

 Ike Picone is project leader/Senior Researcher at iMinds-SMIT and research professor at the department of Communication Sciences of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, which he combines with a part time doctoral-assistantship on journalism studies. Since October 2012 he is also acting as joint research coordinator of the Brussels Platform for Journalism.

His research focusses are situated in the domain of news and journalism studies and focus on the theme of interactive and participatory news use, with a special interest in digital storytelling and self-publication. He specializes in qualitative user research, especially semi-experimental digital ethnography, with links to Living Labs, Proxy Technology Assessment and methods like in-depth/diary/expert/laddering interviews and focus groups. His study on the participatory news practices of regular news users resulted in a PhD in september 2010.



Benjamin De Cleen    Jan Zienkowski

Jan Zienkowski is a research fellow within the Public Discourse project at the Institute for Culture and Society of the University of Navarra. On January 2012, he defended his PhD called 'Analysing political engagement'. This study is based on field work and on an interpretive and functionalist analysis of the discourse of public activists and intellectuals with a Moroccan background in Flanders. Throughout the past ten years, Jan Zienkowski has developed a broad area of interest and expertise in disciplines such as linguistics, sociology, and communication sciences. In the mean while, he has organized and taught various non-academic workshops on discourse analysis, debating, and media-training. 



Former members

Benjamin De Cleen   BENJAMIN DE CLEEN

Benjamin De Cleen is a lecturer at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. His research is largely situated within discourse studies and focuses mainly on the journalistic representation of populist radical right and nationalist parties, the communication of those parties, and their relations with media and expressive culture. Benjamin is the chair of ECREA‘s Young Scholars Network.