Valerie Belair-Gagnon

Photo of Valerie Belair-Gagnon

Contact Me

Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication
206 Church St SE
Ste 329 Murphy Hall

I am Assistant Professor of Journalism Studies at the Hubbard School of Journalism & Mass Communication, and Affiliated Faculty in the Department of Sociology at the University of Minnesota. I am also Director of the Minnesota Journalism Center, and an Affiliated Fellow at the Yale Information Society Project. My research interests are in journalism studies, emerging media, innovation, and audience engagement. I am the author of Social Media at BBC News (Routledge, 2015). My articles have appeared in Journalism, Digital Journalism, Social Media + Society, and Symbolic Interaction. I also write for the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. Born in Montréal (Canada), I earned a BA in sociology (honors) from McGill University, an MSc in sociology from Université de Montréal, and a PhD in sociology from City University of London.

Educational Background & Specialties

Educational Background

  • Ph.D.: Sociology, City University London, 2013.
  • B.A.: Sociology, McGill University, 2004.
  • M.Sc.: Sociology, Université de Montréal, 2007.

Curriculum Vitae


  • Journalism Studies
  • Sociology of Media
  • Media Innovation
  • News Production
  • Chat Apps / Chatbots
  • Social Media
  • Digital Culture
Courses Taught
  • New Media and Culture
  • Digital Media Issues and Theories
  • Mass Media and Popular Culture
Research & Professional Activities

Professional Activities

  • Director: Minnesota Journalism Center at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication , June 2017


  • Web analytics in news production: Ongoing
  • Chatbots in media work: Ongoing
  • Social Media at BBC News: Re-Making Crisis Reporting. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Routledge, Author, 2015. Link
  • Mobile Sourcing: A Case Study of Journalistic Norms and Chat Apps Usage: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Mobile Media and Communication, 2018. Link
  • The Changing Physical and Social Environment of Newsgathering: A Case Study of Foreign Correspondents Using Chat Apps During Unrest: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Colin Agur; Nicholas Frisch, Social Media + Society, 1 1– 10, 2017. Download
  • UAVs and Journalism Disruption: Perspectives from Early Professional Adopters: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Taylor Owen and Avery Holton, Digital Journalism, 2017. Download
  • The Sociology of Journalism: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Matthias Revers, Mouton De Gruyter, Handbook of Communication Science: Journalism, Forthcoming 2018.
  • Media Capture with Chinese Characteristics: Changing Patterns in the Hong Kong Media System: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Nicholas Frisch and Colin Agur, Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism, Forthcoming 2018.
  • New Frontiers in Newsgathering: A Case Study of Foreign Correspondents Using Chat Apps to Cover Political Unrest. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Agur, C. and Frisch, N., Author, 2016. Link
  • Interaction and Training: Social Media in News Organizations. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, MIT Press, Author, 2016. Link
  • The Impact of Regulation on Not-For-Profit News Organizations. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Picard, R. G. and Ranchordas, S., Co-Author, 2016. Link
  • #Verdict2014: Social Media and Changes in Indian Legacy Media During the 2014 Lok Sabha Election. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Agur, C., Author, 2015. Link
  • Citizen Media and Journalism. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Anderson, C.W., Author, 2015. Link
  • Reconstructing the Indian Public Sphere: Newswork and Social Media During the Delhi Gang Rape Case. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Mishra, S. and Agur, C. , Author, 2014. Link
  • Revisiting Impartiality: Social Media and Journalism at the BBC. Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Author, 2013. Link
  • Technology, Cultural Policy and the Public Service Broadcasting Tradition: Professional Practices at the BBC News in the Social Media Era: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Ashgate, Cultural Policy, Work and Identity: The Creation, Renewal and Negotiation of Professional Subjectivities, 2012.
  • International News Production and Globalization: Belair-Gagnon, Valerie, Global Media Journal – Canadian Edition, 4 187-194, 2011. Link