The Centre for Cinema and Media Studies (CIMS), connected to Ghent University, hosts different lines of research which are defined by a critical perspective and an acknowledgement of the vital role that screen and media culture plays in disseminating tastes, values and ideology in society.
By investigating production, content and reception, CIMS argues that the use of diverse media - as signifying articulations - is crucial for negotiating meaning. Objects of inquiry involve contemporary phenomena as well as more historically oriented cases. Next to film and television, research projects also concentrate on other media platforms, including print (book, newspapers, ...) and digital media (gaming, social network sites, ...).
Applying qualitative research methods and often in combination with more quantitative-oriented methods, CIMS has initiated and developed some long-term research activities on film censorship, policy and exhibition; issues of gender and sexuality in relation to media; news coverage of societal topics such as genetically modified food, health issues and suffering or disasters; representation of identity and minorities; celebritization of society and media; ...
These research efforts inform the education taught by members of CIMS. The Centre publishes its own book series, working papers and research reports, and often (co-)organizes conferences and seminars on audiovisual culture.
In the Spring of 2014, the research centers at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences (Ghent University) were part of a Research Assessment Exercise that was conducted by an international panel of experts. CIMS received a positive assessment, demonstrating that we have upheld our position as a research-active center with international visibility and showing an ongoing commitment to critical research with particular societal relevance. The expert panel concluded that CIMS has a strong international standing in the areas of research in which it has specialized, and that the academic output of the center is impressive both in terms of its range and its quality: "In the areas in which it has chosen to specialize, it is clear that the CIMS group has made significant contributions to the existing body of knowledge and has become a leading player in the wider media and communication research community." The panel further praised CIMS for its role in collaborative research initiatives, the wide spectrum of research issues, and its sound record of PhD completion.
For more information on activities related to Ghent University, see the website of the Department of Communication Sciences.