Seth C Lewis

Seth C. Lewis, Ph.D., is Associate Professor and Mitchell V. Charnley Faculty Fellow in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities. He is a Visiting Fellow with the Yale Information Society Project at Yale Law School (2015-2016), and formerly was a Visiting Scholar in the Program in Science, Technology & Society at Stanford University (2013) and a U.S. Fulbright Scholar to Spain (2005). His research explores the social implications of media technologies for the dynamics of media work and innovation, particularly in the case of journalism and its digital transformation. Presently he is working on projects that examine the interplay of humans and machines in news, such as in the rise of automated journalism. Drawing on a variety of disciplines, theories, and methods, Lewis has published nearly 40 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters since 2010, covering a range of sociotechnical phenomena—from big data and open-source software, to social media and digital audience analytics. He edited a 2015 special issue of the international peer-reviewed journal Digital Journalism on the subject of "Journalism in an Era of Big Data," co-edited the 2015 book Boundaries of Journalism: Professionalism, Practices and Participation (published by Routledge), and in 2013 won Outstanding Journal Article of the Year in Journalism Studies for "The Tension Between Professional Control and Open Participation: Journalism and its Boundaries" (PDF), as well as an honorable mention distinction in 2014 for "Open Source and Journalism: Toward New Frameworks for Imagining News Innovation" (PDF). His 2012 co-authored article on journalists’ use of Twitter is the most-cited article in the 16-year history of Journalism Studies. Lewis is on the editorial board of New Media & Society, the top-ranked journal in Communication (according to Google Scholar), as well as the editorial boards of Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, Social Media + Society, and Digital Journalism, among others. He reviews grant proposals for funding agencies internationally, and has given invited lectures at a number of leading universities. Beginning as a 16-year-old reporter for his local newspaper, Lewis previously worked as a journalist for several news organizations, including as Assistant Sports Editor at The Miami Herald. He holds a B.A. in Communications from Brigham Young University, an M.B.A. from Barry University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. He is on Twitter at @sethclewis.

Educational Background & Specialties

Educational Background

  • Ph.D.: Journalism, University of Texas, Austin, 2010.
  • MBA: Barry University, Miami, FL, 2005.
  • B.A.: Communications, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT, 2002.

Curriculum Vitae


  • Journalism studies
  • Media innovation
  • Emerging technologies
  • Social media
  • Digital culture
  • Technology and society
  • Lewis, Seth Corwin (2015). Journalism in an Era of Big Data: Cases, Concepts, and Critiques. Digital Journalism, LinkDownload
  • Zamith, R., &Lewis, S. C. (forthcoming in 2015). Content Analysis and the Algorithmic Coder: What Computational Social Science Means for Traditional Modes of Media Analysis. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. (Accepted for publication in a special issue, “Toward Computational Social Science: Big Data in Digital Environments.”)
  • Lewis, S. C., & Westlund, O. (2015). Big Data and Journalism: Epistemology, Expertise, Economics, and Ethics. Digital Journalism. Download
  • Lewis, S. C., & Westlund, O. (2015). Actors, actants, audiences, and activities in cross-media news work: A matrix and a research agenda. Digital Journalism, 3(1), 19-37. doi:10.1080/21670811.2014.92798 Download
  • Lewis, S. C., & Usher, N. (2014). Code, Collaboration, and the Future of Journalism: A Case Study of the Hacks/Hackers Global Network. Digital Journalism, 2(3), 383-393. doi:10.1080/21670811.2014.895504 Download
  • Westlund, O., &Lewis, S. C. (2014). Agents of Media Innovations: Actors, Actants, and Audiences. The Journal of Media Innovations, 1(2), 10-35. doi:10.5617/jmi.v1i2.856 URL: Download
  • Lewis, S. C., Holton, A. E., & Coddington, M. (2014). Reciprocal Journalism: A Concept of Mutual Exchange Between Journalists and Audiences. Journalism Practice, 8(2), 229-241. doi:10.1080/17512786.2013.859840 Download
  • Zamith, R., &Lewis, S. C. (2014). From public spaces to public sphere: Rethinking systems for reader comments on online news sites. Digital Journalism, 2(4), 558-574. doi:10.1080/21670811.2014.882066 Download
  • Hermida, A., Lewis, S. C., & Zamith, R. (2014). Sourcing the Arab Spring: A Case Study of Andy Carvin’s Sources on Twitter During the Tunisian and Egyptian Revolutions. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 19(3), 479-499. doi:10.1111/jcc4.12074 Download
  • Lee, A., Lewis, S. C., & Powers, M. J. (2014). Audience Clicks and News Placement: A Study of Time-Lagged Influence in Online Journalism. Communication Research, 41(4), 505-530. doi:10.1177/0093650212467031 Download
  • Lewis, S. C., & Usher, N. (2013). Open Source and Journalism: Toward New Frameworks for Imagining News Innovation. Media, Culture & Society, 35(5), 602-619. doi:10.1177/016344371348549 Download
  • Lewis, S. C., Zamith, R., & Hermida, A. (2013). Content Analysis in an Era of Big Data: A Hybrid Approach to Computational and Manual Methods. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 57(1), 34–52. doi:10.1080/08838151.2012.76170 Download
  • Aitamurto, T., &Lewis, S. C. (2013). Open Innovation in Digital Journalism: Examining the Impact of Open APIs at Four News Organizations. New Media & Society, 15(2), 314-331. doi:10.1177/1461444812450682 Download
  • Lewis, S. C. (2012). The Tension Between Professional Control and Open Participation: Journalism and its Boundaries. Information, Communication & Society, 15(6), 836-866. doi:10.1080/1369118X.2012.674150 Download
  • Lewis, S. C. (2012). From Journalism to Information: The Transformation of the Knight Foundation and News Innovation. Mass Communication and Society, 15(3), 309-334. doi:10.1080/15205436.2011.611607 Download
  • Chyi, H. I., Lewis, S. C., & Zheng, N. (2012). A Matter of Life and Death? Examining How Newspapers Covered the Newspaper Crisis. Journalism Studies, 13(3), 305-324. doi:10.1080/1461670X.2011.629090 Download
  • Lasorsa, D. L., Lewis, S. C., & Holton, A. E. (2012). Normalizing Twitter: Journalism Practice in an Emerging Communication Space. Journalism Studies, 13(1), 19-36. doi:10.1080/1461670X.2011.571825 Download
  • Lewis, S. C. (2011). Journalism Innovation and Participation: An Analysis of the Knight News Challenge. International Journal of Communication, 5, 1623-1648. URL: Download
  • Holton, A., &Lewis, S. C. (2011). Journalists, Social Media, and the Use of Humor on Twitter. The Electronic Journal of Communication / La Revue Electronic de Communication, 21(1-2). URL: Download
  • Gil de Zúñiga, H., Lewis, S. C., Hinsley, A. W., Valenzuela, S., Lee, J. K., & Baresch, B. (2011). Blogging as a Journalistic Practice: A Model Linking Perception, Motivation, and Behavior. Journalism: Theory, Practice, Criticism, 12(5), 586-606. doi:10.1177/1464884910388230 Download
  • Lewis, S. C., Kaufhold, K., & Lasorsa, D. L. (2010). Thinking about Citizen Journalism: The Philosophical and Practical Challenges of User-Generated Content for Community Newspapers. Journalism Practice, 4(2), 163-179. doi:10.1080/14616700903156919 Download