“If we want to use digital tools successfully, we need to start thinking about people first”

Marcus Leaning, professor at the University of Winchester in the United Kingdom, was at the University of Minho between May 10 and 11. He attended the Trial and Error II Conference and presented his work about the students’ engagement with digital tools media.

Leaning was a keynote speaker at the event organized by CECS in partnership with ECREA’s TWG on Journalism and Communication Education. In his presentation he stressed the need to give priority to people. For Leaning, “if we really want to use digital tools media successfully, we really need to start thinking about people first and what they need.”

In a interview with CECS, he mentioned the importance of this type of events since they allow the reflection about different realities. For example, contrasting the journalism education and the notion of communication in the United Kingdom and Portugal.

“Seeing how different countries use things, makes us wonder how our system might not be the best. I’m going to the UK with a much broader view”, said the researcher.

In the words of Marcus Leaning, “the presence of foreign researchers also gave Portuguese researchers the notion of how things are in other countries”, so “both benefit”, said the researcher.

Focused on journalism education, Marcus Leaning also problematized the public’s perception of journalism and journalists in UK context. For the English researcher, in a world where the bets are aimed at freelancer journalist and online spaces, the future seems unpredictable.