The Olympics, the World Cup, FIFA, Global Media Events and Social Commotion
Renira Gambarato is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Communications, Media and Design,School of Media. Originally from Brazil, Renira has been at HSE since 2013. She talked to Anna Chernyakhovskaya of the HSE English News Service about her experience of adjusting to living and working as an academic in Russia and about her joint project with HSE and Brazilian researchers on media convergence of global sporting events and opportunities to air feelings of social injustice.
— How did you find yourself an Assistant Professor in HSE? What kind of a challenge has it been for you to come and work in Moscow?
— I am Brazilian, but I have been working abroad for several years. Before coming to Moscow, I was working at Tallinn University, in Estonia. In this context, it was actually not a big move to come to Russia. Nevertheless, of course, I face challenges in Moscow, for example, with the Russian language. I have been studying Russian for awhile, but I still struggle to communicate.
— You have been working at the HSE for two years. How would you assess this period? What have you achieved in research? What did you learn how to do for the first time here?
— Time flies and I’ve already been here for two years… This period was the most productive of my academic career, especially because I have more time for research at HSE. Therefore, my publications and contributions in research projects increased significantly in the last two years. The highlight is definitely the international cooperation between HSE and the Federal University of Minas Gerais (Brazil) that I initiated together with research colleagues from here and from Brazil. I am always learning and in Russia the opportunities to learn about culture, language, food, etc. are huge!
— Could you please tell us about the project you are implementing 'Russia-Brazil Major Sport Events: Social Commotion in Global Media'. It sounds very exciting for sports fans.
— The goal of our research project is to discuss, in the context of media convergence, major sporting events, especially Olympics and FIFA World Cup, as global media events, which are planned, reach high media visibility and feature large capacity of social commotion. Consequently, they are surrounded by several other correlated events/manifestations that take the opportunity of visibility to gain media coverage and social engagement. That is what already happened in Brazil during the FIFA World Cup in 2014 and in Russia during the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.
— What further plans are there for developing cooperation between HSE and the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil?
— In October 2014, Brazilian researchers came to Moscow for a seminar that we organized in order to share our first results and now in October 2015, researchers from HSE are going to Brazil to conclude our research efforts, regarding the two major events that we analyzed. As an outcome of the project, we are working on publishing our results. Our further plans are to keep the project to address the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro and the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. In the last days, we saw the FIFA major crisis and one of the issues could be related to the World Cup in Russia. Thus, our project is very dynamic and we will observe future developments.
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