by Maya Espinel, first year Public Relations and Political Science majors, Newhouse School & Maxwell School – April 12, 2023
Dr. Srivi Ramasubramanian has lended her expertise to numerous speaker events this semester, providing knowledge from the perspectives of both a professor and scholar of communications. Dr. Srivi has touched on the importance of scholar-activism, data justice, and intersectionality within communications research, among other topics. Dr. Srivi looks to build on these topics as she goes into her final talk of the semester at the University of South Florida.
Dr. Srivi Ramasubramanian began her series of talks at the University of Connecticut’s Communications Speaker Series, where she highlighted the importance of data justice. The UConn speaker series brings scholars from around the globe to present on their diverse array of research subjects within communication. Dr. Srivi’s research focuses on the intersections of social justice and communications, and her talk, titled Data Justice: Critical Approaches to Qualitative Research in Communications, touched on multiple theoretical and practical understandings of what data justice means for the communications field.
To start off the month of March, Dr. Srivi visited the University of Northern Texas in Denton, TX and spoke on the importance of social justice and inclusive pedagogy. Given her background as a professor of color, Dr. Srivi walked the audience through the differences between inclusive education and the traditional colonial education system, and introduced her TEAM framework that can be used to shift to inclusive education. For Dr. Srivi, her work as an educator is just as powerful as that of her research.
Following her talk at the University of Northern Texas, Dr. Srivi was invited to speak at the University of Cincinnati’s Taft Lecture Series and at Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Schering Plough Executive Lecture Series – for the third year in a row – to discuss scholar-activism in communication. In both these talks, Dr. Srivi delved into what a scholar-activist truly is, the needed steps to becoming one, the challenges scholar-activists face, and the joys of doing this work as well. Dr Srivi drew from her own experiences as a woman of color, and further explained how this identity has shaped her passion for scholar-activism. This passion has culminated into the creation of projects such as the Difficult Dialogues Project and the CODE^SHIFT lab, which have been incredibly successful.
Dr. Srivi also had the opportunity to present at the Metlife Lender Center for Social Justice Symposium with Professor Jasmina Tacheva, co-director of the iSchool’s HCC+D Lab. Each year, the Metlife Lender Center for Social Justice chooses a new topic to address at the symposium. This year, the topic was “Addressing the Racial Wealth Gap.” Together, Drs. Srivi and Tacheva spoke during the “Converting Research to Policy Change and Action” session about data resurgence, and how AI algorithms perpetuate the racial wealth gap within the United States.
This past week, Dr. Srivi served as a featured speaker at Bowling Green State University’s School of Media and Communications (SMC) Colloquium Series, where she discussed difficult dialogues surrounding (anti)racism. Dr. Srivi began her talk by discussing two key concepts, diversity and inclusion, and defined them within the scope of workspaces and educational settings. She then moved onto the importance of intersectionality within these discussions, and the immense benefits that come from inclusion. Dr. Srivi also addressed practices for recognizing and ending racism and exclusionary practices from the workplace.
Finally, Dr. Srivi Ramasubramanian will finish her series of speaker events this semester at the University of South Florida’s Grazier Lecture series, where she will give her talk, titled Data Justice and Quantitative Criticalism in Communication. In this talk, Dr. Srivi will focus on “the role of data and quantitative approaches to communication from a critical lens.” Dr. Srivi highlights the importance of communication and media working with other fields, in order to answer pressing social challenges and inequalities.