The Department of Journalism at Wits University, together with PEN South Africa, is embarking on a series of events in 2016 to encourage public discourse on freedom of expression in South Africa and to examine the role the media played in relation to #FeesMustFall.

We are therefore calling for proposals for commissioned research on the #FeesMustFall student protests in 2015 and its relationship with, and use of, the media. We would be most interested to hear from young academics and students who took part in the protests, as well media experts and researchers, to help build a South African knowledge-base around these pivotal issues.  We are interested in topics related to how the media covered the events, how protestors related to the media and the role of social media.

The proposal should be no longer than 2 A4 pages and should be submitted to by 20 February 2016.

The proposal should include:

  • Research topic and question
  • The academic frameworks to be used in the research
  • Methodology
  • Timeframes
  • Proposed journals in which it could be placed.

The research paper should be no longer than 4,000 words, and should be ready to be presented at a seminar in May 2016.  A modest remuneration will be offered.

The proposals will be considered by the PEN SA board, and members of the Department of Journalism. An experienced supervisor will be appointed to help the winning proposal/s.