Dr George Ogola
Reader in Journalism
School of Arts and Media
George teaches across our journalism programmes focusing mainly on the theory and research modules. He is also actively involved in PhD supervision of journalism/media projects with a particular interest in the global South and marginalised groups more broadly. He is a thought leader on African journalism and is widely published in the areas of journalism and techno/politics and the intersection of popular culture, power and popular media. He regularly writes for public facing platforms such as The Conversation and has given expert interviews in a number of print and broadcast media around the world including the BBC, South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), Bloomberg, Al-Jazeera, Radio 702, Power FM (South Africa) among many others.
Besides his teaching and supervision responsibilities, George is currently the Research Lead for the Research Excellence Framework (REF) Unit of Assessment 34 (Communication, Cultural and Media Studies, Library and Information Management). He also sits on a number of university committees including the Faculty Research Committee, REF Panel D Research Committee and the University Ethics Committee.
George worked as a correspondent for a number of local and international news publications including the East African Standard (Kenya), Sunday Times (South Africa) and NewsAfrica (UK) prior to joining academia. He moved to Johannesburg, South Africa from Kenya in 2000 and pursued his MA and PhD degrees at the University of the Witwatersrand. He concurrently worked as a sessional lecturer at the University of Witwatersrand's Graduate School of Humanities. Upon completion of his PhD studies, he went on to head the Media and Communications Department at the Midrand Graduate School. He joined the University of Central Lancashire in October, 2005. Now a Reader in Journalism, George has developed a notable research profile as an Africanist focused on the intersections of politics, journalism, popular culture and technology in the global South. He has supervised several PhD students working in these areas and examined such PhD theses in a number of universities in the UK and abroad. Worked closely with the African Studies Association of the UK (ASAUK) whose core missions include supporting knowledge production in and by African scholars, George has served in ASAUK's executive council as the association's project officer to help support its research writing scheme. This scheme aims to increase the number of journal and research outputs by Africa-based African scholars. It has been generously supported by the British Academy over the years and has enabled the organisation of highly successful and transformative workshops in Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Angola, Mozambique, Zambia among other African countries. George serves in a number of advisory boards of Africanist journals and publications and is also a regular peer reviewer of submissions from such journals including African Journalism Studies, Journal of Eastern African Studies, Africa Today, Journal of African Media Studies, African Studies, Politique Africaine and others.
- PhD, University of the Witwatersrand, 2005
- MA Journalism and Media Studies, University of the Wiwatersrand 2002
- BEd (Hons), English Literature and Linguistics, University of Nairobi, 1998
- Cadbury Research Fellowship Award, Centre of West African Studies (CWAS) now Department of African Studies and Anthropology, University of Birmingham, 2004
- Doris Tothill Prestigious Merit Award, 2002-04
- University of the Witwatersrand Council Award, 2002-04
- Journalism and democracy
- Popular Culture, Popular Media and Politics
- Technology, Politics and Journalism
- External Examiner, MA Journalism, Nottingham Trent University
- Series Editor, African Popular Culture Book Series (IAI and Zed Books)
- Editorial board member Journalism Studies, Africa: the Journal of the International African Institute, African Journalism Studies, Eastern African Literary and Cultural Studies.
George's research spans three interrelated areas. He is interested in the intersections of technology, politics and journalism/media in the global South. He looks at the impact of digital technologies on the broader media ecology in the global South and how they shape democratic governance. He is interested in the disruptive and transformative potential of digital technologies but seek to understand how they are appropriated and shaped by local contexts especially under conditions of economic and political constraints. Second, he works at the interface of journalism studies and African popular culture and literature. He looks at Africa’s cultural economy as a site and means through which to understand questions of power and its performance in the post-colony. Three, he is interested in the political economy of the media in the global South. He has a particular interest in how the broader economic, social and political structures enable or limit the news media’s ability to perform its perceived normative roles. He is widely published. His publications include a monograph Popular Media in Kenyan History: Fiction and Newspapers as Political Actors (Palgrave, 2017) and The Future of Quality News Journalism: A Cross-Continental Analysis (Routledge, 2013) co-edited with Peter Anderson and Michael Williams as well over 25 peer reviewed articles.
Use the links below to view their profiles:
- View their unique and persistent identifier on the ORCiD registry
- Full list of publications and articles on CLoK
- Journalism Research Group/C4Globe/Digital Life
- George is currently working on three key projects including a monograph on infopolitics and digital disorder in Kenya, Artificial Intelligence and Journalism in Africa and the Future of Television in the global South.
- British Academy Writing Workshops Grant, 2020
- Communication (Dis)orders: Ethnographies of Infopolitics KU Leuven, Belgium, March 2019
- Africa Talks, University of Birmingham, November 2018
- Centre of African Studies Seminar Series, November 2018
- African Studies International Conference, University of Cambridge, September 2016
- African Studies Biennial International Conference, University of Sussex, September 2014
- European Conference on African Studies, The Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala, Sweden, June 2011
- Racism, Ethnicity and the Media in Africa Conference, University of Westminster, London, March 2010.