The Civic Media Lab is a center for research, pedagogical innovation, media activism, and creativity. We support scholars, students, designers, artists, engineers, journalists, scientists, and civil society actors to work together to develop scholarship, critical journalism, artistic projects, digital tools, curricula, and policy recommendations. Sited at American University of Paris, our approach is international and cross-cultural, seeking to consider the role of media in different civil societies and social justice struggles throughout the world.  

We work to: 

  • understand how civic media can be used to foster solidarity in, and support for, the struggle against all forms of racism, oppression, and discrimination 
  • develop critical discourses and digital literacies around new forms of information transmission, truth claims, and the attention economy in broadcast and networked media 
  • demystify epistemologies of big data and artificial intelligence and consider their uses for and threats to civic life and human subjectivity 
  • reimagine and interrogate democratic and civic participation vis-à-vis media and technology 
  • engage with aesthetic and sensory practices as they relate to issues of civic and political life in a mediated world 



The Civic Media Lab was founded in 2017 under the direction of Professor Waddick Doyle, with an AUP Presidential Initiative grant from the Mellon Foundation. Over four years, the lab developed into a collaborative space for participatory politics and participatory culture, civic initiatives, social media and activism, intercultural relations, and democracy. With a strong focus on pedagogy and student initiatives, the lab fostered students’ civic engagement through video productions, podcasts, websites, and blogs, as well as research-based papers. The work undertaken in the Lab explored the civic potential of media when taken charge by individuals and communities in order to shape their own political reality in a constantly evolving, globalized, and connected culture. 

During this period, the lab focused on the following areas: 

  • Minorities, inequalities and ways to counter them 
  • Civic initiatives in the workplace and social, ethical entrepreneurship 
  • The study of crises in the world and the mapping of financial, political and cultural power 
  • The use of traditional and new media for tactical purposes 
  • Encountering others and building bridges between cultures 
  • The study of migration and exile and its impact on sense of belonging and identity.  


Past Projects