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Film Festival Research Network

Film Festival Research Network


Dr. Marijke de Valck

Members of the research group

dr. M. de Valck External Members: Dr. Brendan Kredell (University of Galgary) Dr. Diane Burgess (Simon Fraser University) Dr. Dorota Ostrowska (Birkbeck College, University of London) Dr. Julian Stringer (University of Nottingham) Dr. Liz Czach (University of Alberta) Dr. Ragan Rhyne (independent scholar) Dr. Tamara Falicov (University of Kansas) Ger Zielinski (Trent University) Prof. B. Ruby Rich (University of California-Santa Cruz) Prof. Cindy Hing-Yuk Wong (College of Staten Island, City University of New York) Prof. Dina Iordanova (University of St. Andrews) Prof. Janet Harbord (Queen Mary, University of London) Skadi Loist (University of Hamburg) Toby Lee, PhD student (Harvard University)

Description of the research programme of the research group

The Film Festival Research Network (FFRN) offers an international platform for scholars working on and/or interested in film festivals. The network aims to facilitate discussion between academics and exchange with professionals, and further film festival research by developing several activities. These activities include the organization of meetings and panels at international conferences: annual presence in Europe (at NECS – European Network for Cinema and Media Studies since 2008, film festival research workgroup), and the US (at SCMS – Society for Cinema and Media Studies since 2011, film and media festivals SIG); a mailing list ( with almost 400 subscribers; and a website/blog (, which features an annotated bibliography on film festival  research, that is regularly updated. The FFRN collaborates with St. Andrews University Film Studies, an active center for film festival research.

Envisaged results

1. A text book on film festivals, published by Routledge in 2014/15. Film Festivals: History, Theory, Method, Practice, Marijke de Valck, Brendan Kredell, Skadi Loist (eds.) 2. A book series on film festivals, published by Palgrave Macmillan. Edited by Marijke de Valck and Tamara Falicov. The series aims to publish three books annually. The first book proposals are currently under review. 3. Pre-constituted panels on film festivals for annual NECS conference 4. Pre-constituted panels on film festivals for annual SCMS conference 5. Pre-constituted panels on film festivals for other conferences, such as the Busan Cinema Forum (2010 and 2011), Screen (2013), ECREA (2013). 6. Special issues on film festival research. Forthcoming are a dossier on Bourdieu and film festival studies (Canadian Journal of Film Studies and a dossier) on Film Festival Pedagogy: Using the Film Festival as Film Course (Scope.) 7. Individual journal articles 8. Festival review section in the online NECSUS journal, Edited by Marijke de Valck and Skadi Loist

Work plan and time schedule

The Film Festival Research Network is an on-going platform in the framework of which different projects are organized. Some activities return annually, other are completed over a given period. See above.

Societal relevance

As the world of film festivals is undergoing rapid transformations, festival organizations and their stakeholders are re-articulating their role and investments. Research on film festivals generates up-to-date knowledge and fresh insights, that are relevant to film festivals, media companies, policy makers, filmmakers and all cultural workers who are professionally involved, and may guide them in their responses to the transformations. It is specifically equipped to: (1) Provide overview and material for comparison: Professionals working for or with film festivals have little time or may be less inclined to explore matters as broadly as academics are able to. They can benefit from the inclusion of diverging perspectives and investigation of different cases and countries in studies on festivals; (2) Provide contextualisation and new frames for understanding: Festival and business discourse tends to be led by the latest buzz and trending topics. Factual information about prizes won, deals closed and festival/market attendance dominates the flow of news. Academics – and scholars working in humanities in particular – offer approaches and concepts that disrupt this flow and challenge habitual thinking; and (3) Instigate critical reflection: Critical academic analyses can call attention for issues that tend to get lost in day-to-day management. There might not be an articulated need of third parties to consider such implications, but exchange and discussion on the subject is nonetheless urgent and often experienced as relevant by the cultural administrators involved once instigated.

This research group is active in the following constellations:



Cultural and Social Critique