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Announcing the finalists for the $10,000 prize for research in public interest communications

The University of Florida Center for Public Interest Communications announces the finalists for the $10,000 prize for research in public interest communications.

The Center for Public Interest Communications awards two $1,500 prizes and one $10,000 grand prize to peer-reviewed academic research that informs the growing discipline of public interest communications. The three finalists will present their work at frank, a gathering for social change communication practitioners, academics, philanthropists, business leaders and advocates who use strategic communication to drive social change. The event will take place in Gainesville, Florida, Feb. 5-8, 2019.

At frank, the audience votes for the winner of the $10,000 Prize for Research in Public Interest Communications. The finalists were selected from a pool of 72 papers by a review committee of scholars and practitioners. Papers were considered based on their applicability to the field, contribution to public interest communications as an interdisciplinary academic discipline, methodological rigor and insight that can be used to innovate the social sector.

Meet the frank 2019 Prize for Research in Public Interest Communications finalists:

Caty Borum Chattoo, presenting author

American University

Area of Research: Communication

Feldman, L., & Chattoo, C. B. (2018). Comedy as a Route to Social Change: The Effects of Satire and News on Persuasion about Syrian Refugees. Mass Communication and Society, 1-24

Caty Borum Chattoo is Director of the Center for Media & Social Impact (CMSI), and assistant professor at the American University School of Communication. She is an award-winning documentary producer, scholar, professor and strategist working at the intersection of social change communication, documentary and entertainment storytelling. Her book about the role of mediated comedy in social change, A Comedian and An Activist Walk Into a Bar: The [Serious] Role of Comedy in Social Justice, with co-author Lauren Feldman, is forthcoming from University of California Press. Her documentary book, The Blackfish Effect & Other Stories: Documentaries & Social Change in the Information Age, is forthcoming from Oxford University Press.

Learn more about Caty

Learn more about Lauren.


Soumyajit (Shom) Mazumder, Ph.D. candidatepresenting author

Harvard University

Area of Research: Political Science

Mazumder, S. (2018). The Persistent Effect of US Civil Rights Protests on Political Attitudes. American Journal of Political Science62(4), 922-935.

Soumyajit (Shom) Mazumder is a Ph.D. candidate in government at Harvard University. His research combines “natural” experiments with fine-grained data to help answer a simple question: when does history repeat itself? His work uses this approach to understand whether and why social movements succeed, when oppressed groups can overcome prejudice, and why our society continues to be unequal. Shom is passionate about distilling social science insights to public audiences by writing occasionally for The Washington Post’s Monkey Cage. Off the clock, you can find him in the kitchen or in your neighborhood climbing gym.

Learn more about Shom


Jeremy Yip, Ph.D., presenting author

Georgetown University

Area of Research: Psychology

Yip, J. A., & Schweitzer, M. E. (2019). Losing your temper and your perspective: Anger reduces perspective-taking. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes150, 28-45.

Jeremy A. Yip is an Assistant Professor of Management at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, where his research explores the psychology of conflict and negotiations. He explores the consequences of emotions and is introducing a new conceptualization of competitive communication called trash-talking, showing that trash-talking is commonly encountered in organizations. His research has been published in leading journals such as Organizational Behavior & Human Decision Processes, Psychological Science, Social Psychological & Personality Science, and Emotion.

Learn more about Jeremy

Learn more about Maurice

Posted: January 24, 2019
Category: Uncategorized