The International Communication Section (ICOMM)

of the International Studies Association

CfP: Roy W. Howard Symposium: Connecting Journalism’s Past, Present and Future through Digital Archives

Call for Submissions

The Indiana University Media School invites submissions for a new symposium organized around the launch of the fully digitized collection in IU’s Roy W. Howard Archive. This influential journalist and newspaper publisher ran the United Press and the ScrippsHoward newspaper chain in the first half of the twentieth century, and IU has housed a substantial collection of his papers since 1983. The collection is being digitized and will be available for online viewing and research this year.

To celebrate this rich resource, the Media School will host a symposium for researchers, archivists, journalists and others interested in Howard’s legacy, the broader history of twentieth century journalism, and the increasing availability of digitized archival sources for historical research. The symposium will be in October 2018 on IU’s beautiful Bloomington, Indiana, campus and will feature paper sessions, a roundtable discussion on archives and digitization, and a showcase panel of senior scholars who have used the Howard Archive. The symposium is funded by generous support from the Scripps Howard Foundation and the Howard family.

Researchers are invited to submit papers, proposals, or sketches of works in progress focused on the history of journalism during Roy W. Howard’s career, which spanned the first six decades of the twentieth century. Submissions should draw at least partly on archival materials, but while we encourage contributions that make use of the Howard archive, that is not a requirement. In keeping with Howard’s long and varied journalism career, paper authors may focus on a wide range of topics and themes touching on press and politics, media leadership, news and technology, international news, and the news media’s watchdog role. Authors might also choose to submit essays focused on the digital humanities, addressing methodological issues surrounding the use of newly digitized archives, for instance.

Submissions should be 15 to 20 pages long, and accepted authors must commit to presenting their work in person at the symposium. Stipends will be provided to accepted authors to help defray travel expenses. The Media School particularly welcomes submissions from graduate students, junior faculty members and international scholars.

PDF files should be submitted by the deadline to Emily Harrison at


  • Submissions due: June 1, 2018
  • Participant notification: August 1, 2018
  • Registration for Symposium: Opens August 2018
  • Symposium: October 25-26, 2018

More about the Roy W. Howard Archive and the Digitization Project

The Roy W. Howard Papers, 1892-1960, is the first archival collection of The Media School at Indiana University. The collection includes more than 14,000 pieces of correspondence, along with thousands of photographs, audiovisual materials and other media. The archive covers Roy Howard’s career as journalist, president and general manager of United Press, and chairman of Scripps Howard Newspapers. These records are organized by series and format and are stored in archival storage containers in an environmentally controlled room in Franklin Hall, home of The Media School.

Highlights of the archive include Howard’s correspondence with national and international leaders over several decades. These individuals include several United States presidents, including Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Delano Roosevelt; military and intelligence figures, including J. Edgar Hoover; international leaders, including extensive communication with Philippine President Manuel Quezon; and a diverse spectrum of journalists and leaders in American media.

Led by Media School archivist Joshua Bennett, the Roy W. Howard archive is currently in the process of complete digitization of its materials, funded by the Scripps Howard Foundation and the Howard Family.

The current finding aid for the collection is available at:



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This entry was posted on March 9, 2018 by .
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