School of Arts and Cultures

Staff Profiles

Dr Joss Hands

Senior Lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies



Joss Hands is Senior Lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies, he teaches primarily on the BA Media, Communication and Cultural Studies. Joss is also the BA Combined Honours subject adviser for media studies. Before joining the Media, Culture, Heritage subject area at Newcastle University in September 2015 Joss was Reader in Media and Critical Theory at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge. 


BA. (Hons) Humanities; PhD Critical Theory (MMU)


Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)

Fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA)

Member of the Association of Internet Researchers (AoIR)

Member of the Media, Communication and Cultural Studies Association (MeCCSA) 

Research Interests

Joss's research interests are in areas of digital media, network politics and critical theory - with a particular interest in the use of digital media for resistant and activist politics - he has published widely on these topics and is series editor of the Pluto Press book series Digital Barricades.  

Joss is interested in supervising PhDs in the areas of digital culture, digital media and activism, media and critical theory, new media and democracy, the public sphere and eDemocracy or other related areas. 


Joss's recent research interests are broadly in network politics and culture, a field located at the intersection of technology, new media, politics and critical theory.

His focus has been on two main areas, firstly the use of digital media for the expression of dissent and the organisation of resistance movements, secondly the application of technology in more formal democratic procedures, specifically the role of the Internet in contributing towards the development of deliberative democracy.

He has published articles, review essays and reviews in journals such as Philosophy and Social Criticism, First Monday, Information, Communication and Society, Popular Communication and Culture, Theory and Critique. He is author of the widely cited book on new media and activism @ is For Activism: Dissent, Resistance and Rebellion in a Digital Culture, published by Pluto Press in 2011. He has recently Co-Edited a special issue of Culture Machine on 'Platform Politics' that explored the place of social media platforms in the evolution of digital politics and social movements. 

Joss was principal investigator for a two year AHRC funded project 'Exploring New Configurations of Network Politics', which included a number of international conferences in the UK and North America and involved contributions from leading researchers, activists and practitioners from around the world.  

Joss is currently working on a new book for Pluto Press to be titled 'Gadget Consciousness' on the place of digital media in augmenting new forms of collective and connective action and cooperation. He is also series editor, with Prof. Jodi Dean and Prof. Tim Jordan, of the Pluto Press book series 'Digital Barricades: Interventions in Digital Culture and Politics.

Full lists of Joss's talks and publications can be found on his personal website here


Module Leader

MCH 2087 - Media, Democracy and The Public Sphere

MCH 3074 - Themes and Issues in Media and Cultural Studies 

Module Tutor

MCH 3073 Media Research Dissertation

MCH 3072 Journalism and Media Research Dissertation

MCH 8199 Dissertation for MA Media and Public Relations

MCH 8299 Dissertation for MA Media and Journalism