Dr Maria Sourbati lectures and researches in Media Studies
She has an industry background as a radio producer and presenter. Her research explores the governance and social implications of the diffusion of electronic media technologies.
Dr Maria Sourbati is Senior Lecturer in Media and Communications. Her research explores the governance and social implications of the diffusion of media technologies. 'Media', in her work, incorporates technical, institutional and cultural processes by which information, people and services are related to us via digital technologies.
Maria Sourbati has developed expertise in communications regulation, communication and social policy, new media and older people, digital media, disability, age and ageism. Maria's current research examines digital media technologies and age relations as part of complex sets of relations of power that shape a person’s experience along time and other social markers of difference, including gender, race and class.
Her research has also examined tensions inherent in policy-driven diffusion of digital technologies and locally situated modes of user engagement with ICTs. This strand investigates the politics of the digital switchover and user aspects in the 'digital by default' policy agenda from a social inclusion perspective. Maria’s earlier work on historically and technologically situated processes of media regulation has examined public service provision in electronic communications with a focus on diversity, universal access and media literacy.
Maria obtained her BA in Political Science from Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences (Athens). She then completed an MA in Communication Policy (City, University of London) and a PhD at the Centre for Research into Innovation, Culture and Technology (Brunel University). Sourbati’s doctorate examined the co-evolution of television technologies, markets and regulation.
Prior to joining the University of Brighton she held research posts at the British Film Institute, and Goldsmiths College, University of London where she led qualitative research into the use of new media by older people. Having realised she is dyslexic Sourbati developed an interest in institutional dynamics of access, disablement, and exclusion. Sourbati understands disability as an interface of designed environments and a person’s circumstances, including impairment, and culturally situated discourses of discrimination.
Current PhD supervision: Media self-regulation; e-govenrment. Available to supervise: Digital communications policy and regulation; media literacy; self-regulation; e-public service and digital inclusion; age relations.
Media literacy, media access and universality in communications
The role of public policy in creating a public service framework to expand and promote the diffusion of new media technologies and services.
Loos, Eugène, Ivan, Loredana, Fernández-Ardèvol, Mireia, Sourbati, Maria, Ekström, Maria, Wilińska, Monika, Carlo, Simone and Schiau, Ioana (2018) Ageing well? A cross-country analysis of the way older people are visually represented at websites of organizations for older people Journal of Comparative Research in Anthropology and Sociology, 8 (2). pp. 63-83. ISSN 2068-0317
Behrendt, Frauke, Murray, Lesley, Hancox, Andrew, Sourbati, Maria and Huber, Jorg (2017) Intelligent Transport Solutions for Social Inclusion (ITSSI): Project Report [Report (for external body)]
Sourbati, Maria (2016) Ageism, social inclusion and digital public service: Considering age relations in the 21st century In: Scabini, E. and Rossi, G., eds. L’allungamento della vita: Una risorsa per la famiglia, un’opportunità per la società. Studi Interdisciplinari sulla Famiglia, 28 . Vita e Pensiero, Milan, Italy, pp. 229-245. ISBN 9788834329658
Sourbati, Maria (2015) Age(ism) in digital information provision: The case of online public services for older adults In: Zhou, J. and Salvendy, G., eds. Human Aspects of IT for the Aged Population. Design for Aging. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 9193 . Springer, Berlin, pp. 376-386. ISBN 9783319208916
Sourbati, Maria (2012) Disabling communications? A capabilities perspective on media access, social inclusion and communication policy Media Culture & Society, 34 (5). pp. 571-587. ISSN 0163-4437
Sourbati, Maria (2011) The digital switchover as an information society initiative: the role of public policy in promoting access to digital ICTs Telematics and Informatics , 28 (4). pp. 295-302. ISSN 0736-5853
Sourbati, Maria (2010) Non Users in the Information Society. Learning from the older generation In: Gebhardt, J., Greif, H., Raycheva, L., Lobet-Maris, C. and Lasen, A., eds. Experiencing the Broadband Society. Peter Lang, Berlin, pp. 107-118. ISBN 9783631584064
Sourbati, Maria (2009) “It could be useful but not for me at the moment”. Older people, internet access, and public service provision New Media and Society, 11 (7). 1083-1100 . ISSN 1461-4448
Sourbati, Maria (2009) Media literacy and universal access in Europe The Information Society, 25 (4). pp. 248-254. ISSN 0197-2243
Sourbati, Maria (2008) On older people, Internet access and electronic service delivery. A study of sheltered homes In: Mante-Meijer, E., Loos, E. and Haddon, L., eds. The Social Dynamics of Information and Communication Technology. Ashgate, pp. 95-104. ISBN 9780754670827
Sourbati, Maria (2006) Log on, tune in...for what? Online connectivity, communications policy and the neglected user in Europe's information society In: The impact of internet on the mass media in Europe, 26-29 Apr 2006, Delphi, Greece.
Sourbati, Maria (2004) Digital television, online connectivity and electronic service delivery: implications for communications policy (and research) Media, Culture and Society, 26 (4). pp. 585-590. ISSN 0163-4437
Sourbati, Maria (2004) Screen test: older people interested in using the internet need far more than just computers Inside Housing. p. 33. ISSN 0950-3358
Sourbati, Maria (2004) Internet use in sheltered housing: older people's access to new media and online service delivery Joseph Rowntree Foundation, York, UK. ISBN 1859351687
Sourbati, Maria (2003) 'What do you call it, you know, the one with the mouse': older people, internet access and electronic service delivery In: Haddon, L., Mante-Meijer, E., Sapio, B., Kommenon, K-H., Fortunati, L. and Kant, A., eds. The good, the bad and the irrelevant: the user and the future of information and communication technologies, conference proceedings. Media Lab of University of Art and Design Helsinki UIAH, Helsinki, Finland, pp. 317-322. ISBN 9515581257
Ivan, L, Loos, E Carlo, S, Ekström, M, Fernández-Ardèvol, de Mooij, M, M Sourbati, M Wilińska, M, ‘Aging Well? A cross country analysis of visual representations of older people’ (forthcoming)
Sourbati, M and Loos, E ‘Interfacing old age in digital information provision' (forthcoming)
‘Active Ageing as Digital Migration: Time to think beyond ageist myths’ (In preparation)
'Active or ageist? Designing media for age in the old continent (in preparation)
Sourbati, M (2016) 'Ageism, social inclusion and digital public service: Considering age relations in the 21stcentury’ in E Scabini & G Rossi (eds), L’allungamento della vita: Una risorsa per la famiglia, un’opportunità per la società, pp.229-245. Studi Interdisciplinari sulla Famiglia, no. 28 Vita e Pensiero, 2016
Sourbati, M (2015) ‘Age(ism) in digital information provision: The case of online public services for older adults’ pp. 376-386, in Zhou, J and Salvendy, G (eds) Human Aspects of IT for the Aged Population. Design for Aging. First International Conference, ITAP 2015, Held as Part of HCI International 2015, Los Angeles, CA, USA, August 2-7, 2015. Proceedings, Part I Springer (Berlin) ISBN: 978-3-319-20892-3 (Online) 978-3-319-20891-6 (Print)
Sourbati, M (2008) ‘New Media and Older People. Not Just a Matter of Age, Stupid!’ in Sapio, B., Fortunati, L, Haddon, L, Kommonen, K, Mante-Meijer, E and Turk, T (eds) The Good, the Bad and the Unexpected. The user and the future of information and communication technologies. Conference proceedings, COST 298 Participation in the broadband society. Volume 1, pp. 612-22. European Science Foundation, Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.
Sourbati, M (2008) ‘Digital TV the interactive promise and social inclusion: The UK case’ in Urban, A, Sapio, B and Turk, T (ed) Digital Television Revisited. Linking Users, Markets and Policies. pp. 204-212. Workshop proceedings COST 298 Participation in the Broadband Society. Budapest, Hungary, 15 May 2008.
Sourbati, M (2006) ‘Long on, tune in …for what? Online connectivity and the neglected user in Europe’s
Information Society’, in Leandros, N. (ed) The internet and the mass media in Europe Cost A20 International Conference The internet and the mass media in Europe, Delfi, Greece, 26-28 April. pp. 77-89 Abramis Publishing.
Sourbati, M. (2004) ‘Digital television, online connectivity and electronic service delivery: Implications for communications policy (and research)’, Media Culture and Society, Vol. 26(4): 585-59.
Sourbati, M (2003)‘”What do you call it, you know, the one with the Mouse”: Older People, Internet Access and Electronic Service Delivery’, in Haddon, L., Mante-Meijer, E., Sapio, B., Kommenon, K-H, Fortunati, L., and Kant, A. (eds) The Good, the Bad and the Irrelevant: The User and the Future of Information and Communication Technologies, Conference Proceedings, COST 269 – User aspects of ICTs, University of Art and Design, Helsinki, Finland, 3-5 Sept.
° Lund University Department of Communication and Media Symposium: Senior citizens domesticating ICTs. Lund, Sweden, 27-28 April 2017.
° 21st IAGG World Congress: A global dialogue on ageing. COST IS1402 Symposium: Public Policies Related to Ageism. San Francisco, CA. 23-27 July 2017.
° Third International Conference on Human Aspects of IT for the Aged Population to be held jointly with HCI International 2017 http://www.hcii2017.org, Vancouver, Canada, 12-14 July 2017.
° “Datafied age: Social data and age relations”, YOY ARE MY DATA symposium, Watermans Digital Performance Weekend, organised by the Watermans Arts Centre and London South Bank University as part of the Being Human Festival (Watermans Arts, Saturday 14 November, 11.00–16.00) This talk is availablehere
° ‘Age(ism) in digital information provision: The case of online public services for older adults’ Human Aspects of IT for the Aged Population. Design for Aging. First International Conference, ITAP 2015, Part of Human Computer Interaction International 2015, Los Angeles, CA, USA, August 2-7, 2015.
° ‘Ageism: A barrier to social inclusion in the 21st century’ INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE on ACTIVE AGEING & EXPO 2015 MILANO “Nutrire la memoria per nutrire le generazioni: anziani attivi e benessere” OssCom and Centro di Ateneo Studi e Ricerche sulla Famiglia, UCSC Università Cattolica, Room Pio XI & Padiglione EXPO European Commission, Milan, Italy, 11-12 May, 2015.
° Active Ageing Round Table, European Union Pavilion, EXPO Milano 2015, Milan, Italy12 May 2015.
° ‘Ageist by default? Representing older age online.’ Journalism and Media Research Seminar Series. Department of Journalism and Media, University of Huddersfield, 21 January 2015.
Media access and diversity: the digital turn, International Symposium on Media Pluralism organised by the Research Institute for Applied Communication, Cyprus. (2009)
° Sourbati, M with Simone Carlo (2015) ‘The mutuality of age and technology in Digital Divide policy’ Partnership for Progress on the Digital Divide 2015 International Conference 21-22 October 2015, Scottsdale (Phoenix), Arizona, USA
° Sourbati, M (2014) ‘Digital by Default’ and the marginalisation of older people in digital information provision’ MECCSA 2014, Bournemouth, UK8-10 January 2014
° Sourbati, M. (2011) ‘Disabling communications? Media access, disability and communications policy’, Communication @ the Center? International Communication Association (ICA) 61st Annual Conference, Boston, Massachusetts, USA 26-30 May 2011
° Sourbati, M. (2010) ‘Digital exclusion, disability and media access: The role of communications policy’, Communication and Citizenship International Association for Media and Communication Research(IAMCR) Conference, Braga, Portugal, 18-22 July 2010
° Sourbati, M. (2009) ‘Media access and universal service policies in the Information Society’, New Media and Information: Convergences and Divergences Conference, Athens, Greece, 6-9 May
° Sourbati, M. (2008) ‘Access to communications and social exclusion in Europe’s Information Society’. Communications Policy and Technology Section, the 26th International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) conference in Stockholm, Sweden 20-25 July 2008
° Sourbati, M. (2008) ‘Digital TV the interactive promise and social inclusion’. Digital Television revisited. Linking users, markets and policies. COST 298 Participation in the Broadband Society. Budapest, Hungary, 15 May 2008.
° Sourbati, M. (2008) ‘Europe’s Digital Media Policy Discourses and the Problem of the User’, ECREA Digital Culture & Communication (DCC) Section Workshop Digital Media: European Perspectives? University of Sussex, 1-3 November 2007
° Sourbati, M. (2007) ‘New Media and Older People. Not Just a Matter of Age, Stupid!’ COST 298 Participation in the broadband society. The user and the future of information and communication technologies. Academy of National Economy, Moscow, Russian Federation 23-25 May 2007.
° Sourbati, M and Klontzas, M (2006) ‘Long on, tune in …for what? Online connectivity and the neglected user in Europe’s Information Society’ Cost A20 (2006) The Internet and the mass media in Europe, Delfi, Greece, 26-28 April.
° Sourbati, M and Klontzas, M (2006) ‘Public service in communications – revisiting some age-old questions’,Media, Communication and Cultural Studies Association (Meccsa), Annual Conference, Leeds Metropolitan University, 14-15 January
° Sourbati, M, (2003) ‘“What do you call it, you know, the with the mouse” - Older people, internet access and electronic service delivery’, COST 269 Action Conference, The Good, the Bad and the Irrelevant, University of Art and Design, Helsinki, Finland, 3-5 Sept. 2003 www.goodbad.uiah.fi
Carlo, S and Sourbati, M (2015) ‘Older people in digital inclusion policies in the UK and Italy’. COST Action IS1402 STSM: Comparing digital inclusion of older people policies in UK and Italy. Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Italy,and University of Brighton, UK [Funded by EU COST ction IS1402 STSM]
Sourbati, M. (2004) Internet Use in Sheltered Housing: Older people’s access to new media and online service delivery, from ‘The Digital Age: Opportunities or Exclusion’ Series, Joseph Rowntree Foundation. ISBN 1 85 935 168 9 [Funded by Joseph Rowntree Foundation Project Code: 2658113]
° Journal of Applied Gerontology (SAGE 2016-)
° Journal of Ageing and Social Policy (Taylor & Francis, 2015-)
° New Media and Society (SAGE, 2013-)
° International Journal of Digital Television (Intellect, 2013-)
° Book series and edited collection reviewer for Peter Lang, Berlin, and Sage, London (2009-)
° International conference reviewer for ECREA (2008-)
° Funding application reviewer for the Research Foundation - Flanders (Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek - Vlaanderen, FWO), Belgium (2012)
° Grant application reviewer for the School for Social Care Research (SSCR), National Institute for Health Research, London School of Economics (2011)
Invitations to contribute expert advice in public/policy research and seminars include:
§ Seminar presentations to the Accessibility Focus Group, UK Online Interactive, Office of the Deputy Prime Minister – The Cabinet Office, Stockley House, London (May 2003);
§ The DTI/Generics Group/IPSOS study into Consumer Adoption of Digital Television prepared for the DTI Digital TV Project (2004);
§ Talk on media pluralism and diversity, International Symposium on Media Pluralism organised by the Research Institute for Applied Communication, Cyprus (2009).
Consultancy reports for the Eurofiction research consortium:
§ Paterson, R. and Sourbati, M. (2003) [‘The UK’] in Buonano, M. (ed.), EUROFICTION 2003 Report: Comparative analysis of the Seventh Year’s Research on European Fiction, European Audiovisual Observatory, Strasbourg, (November 2003, electronic publication). Available at http://www.obs.coe.int/oea_publ/eurofic/index.html.en
§ Paterson, R. and Sourbati, M. (2002) [‘The UK’] in Buonano, M. (ed.) EUROFICTION. 2002 Report: Television Fiction in Europe, European Audiovisual Observatory, Strasbourg, October 2002.
§ Paterson, R. and Sourbati, M. (2001) Économie de la fiction en Europe, Rapport Données, Institut National de l' Audiovisuel (INA) et l' Observatoire Européen de l' Audiovisuel (OEA) (Paterson, R. and Sourbati, M. responsible for UK submission.