Turnage Award Recipients

Dr. Damien Blake, Department of Political Science

“Democracy & Exclusion”

This research project addresses online intolerant and bigoted dialogue among individuals observing the political process.

Professor Douglas Kass, School of Communications

“Reverse Democracy in Hong Kong & Taiwan”

This research addresses the role of media in political transitions, and ties into his previous Turnage work on media and democracy.

“The Rise of Aung San Suu Kyi and the Role of Free Media in Democratizing Burma” 

This project addresses the important topic of the role of media and democratization in Myanmar. It continues work supported by the Turnage Fund that enabled Professor Cass to travel to the region.

Dr. Jason Kirk, Department Political Science

“South by South Asian: Bobby Jindal, Nikki Haley, and the Meaning of Two Desi Governors in Dixie”  

This project addresses the role of politics, identity, and media through an analysis of “the contested meaning of the Jindal-Haley phenomenon.”  The work analyzes politics and representation of two Indian-American governors.

Dr. Byung Lee, School of Communication

“Comparative Study of Tweets and TV Ads of the 2014 presidential candidates: Complementary or Independent?”  

This project addresses the relationship between twitter and campaign television ads. The use of ads from the Political Communication Lab at Stanford is a strength of the project.

“Tweets by Five Presidential Candidates and the Structure of Linkage Behavior of Twitter Followers in the 2012 Presidential Election”

This project examines how five presidential candidates- Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, and President Barack Obama- used Twitter in the 2012 presidential election. It found that President Obama and four Republican presidential candidates used Twitter mostly as a one-way channel when they communicated with their followers.

This study also examines how citizens receive information from the Twitter network. It found that people’s communication patterns on Twitter suggest a strong two-step model in which candidates connect with opinion leaders and opinion leaders connect with general Twitter followers.

Professor David Levine, School of Law

“Confidentiality Creep, Opportunistic Privacy and Dual-Use Secrecy: The Professions in an Age of Information Capture”

This project addresses how tech experts view information access, what information is actually needed to make informed recommendations, and the reasons why tech leaders keep information secret.

Dr. Harlen Makemson, School of Communications

Project: “Political Vision: Images that Shaped Elections and Shook American Culture”

Dr. Makemson’s project will compare techniques used in Frank Capra’s “Why We Fight” documentary film at the outset of World War II with those used by Edward R. Murrow in his famous “See It Now” television broadcast against Sen. Joseph McCarthy in 1953.

Dr. Tom Mould (Sociology & Anthropology); Dr. Maureen Vandermaas-Peeler (Psychology); Professor Aunchalee Palmquist (Sociology & Anthropology); Professor Ashley Burns (Political Science); Kathy Colville (Human Services); Ken Hassell (Art); Darris Means (Elon Academy Associate Director); Greg Honan (student – Political Science); Sara Dufour (student – Anthropology); Community partners from Department of Social Services (DSS), Burlington Housing Authority; United Way; Allied Churches, among others.

“The Faces of Welfare: A Comparative Analysis of Narratives about Public Assistance and Their Impact on Public Perception and Policy”

The Voices of Welfare Project is an on-going collaborative project. Our research continues to examine the stories people tell about public assistance, with the primary goal of understanding the varied opinions, views and lived experiences of people both intimately involved in the welfare system such as aid recipients and providers, and those involved less directly, from politicians to consumers of U.S. media.  Further, this research explores how these narratives contribute to political discourse nationally and locally.

Dr. Safia Swimelar, Department of Political Science

“The Political, Symbolic, and Strategic Uses of Media Images of Political Violence in Contemporary Narratives of American Foreign Policy”

This research project and paper investigates several of the iconic photographs and videos of the U.S Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and analyzes how the state, and to some extent the media, made political, normative, and strategic uses of these images. Specifically, it examines how the U.S government creates, disseminates, hides, and tries to control prominent and iconic images of enemy execution, political violence, and violations of human dignity in the context of post 9/11 wars and terrorism, and how these images fit into the contemporary U.S strategic narratives.