New Connections Talks

The BAFTSS Programme for Early Career Researchers

We are now inviting proposals for 2020/21's ‘New Connections Programme’, a series of research talks at universities across the UK. 


Emerging from the Early Career Mentoring Scheme, the ‘New Connections Programme’ is a BAFTSS scheme supporting early career researchers and academics on fixed-term contracts, encouraging them to broker a fresh relationship with an academic institution. BAFTSS will provide travel bursaries of up to £100 to enable them to present their research to a new audience. We hope to be able to support five such events across the 2020-21 academic year. 


Should an online research talk be taking place instead of a face-to-face event, in line with the practice of the host institution and/or the circumstances of the participant, book vouchers will be offered instead of a travel bursary. The online talk will then be available on the BAFTSS website. 


To benefit from the scheme, applicants must meet the following criteria:  

  • hold an active BAFTSS membership 

  • be an ECR within 8 years of the PhD being awarded and not be in permanent salaried academic work 

  • not have any prior institutional connection with the chosen host university (such as teaching experience, undergraduate or postgraduate study). This is because we want the Programme to introduce ECRs to new audiences, to help them to network and enhance their CV. 


Applicants are invited to send:  

  • the title of the research talk and an abstract of up to 100 words  

  • a short bio, including name and affiliation (if any) 

  • the name of the host institution and department / research centre / cluster / group (and if relevant, the title of the university’s programme of research papers) 

  • the name of the academic who could act as chair/respondent. We strongly encourage applicants to liaise with the latter in advance of the submission.  


There will be two rounds of applications: 

Semester 1 deadline: 15th October 2020 

Semester 2 deadline: 15th January 2021 


We particularly encourage the participation from applicants across and beyond the UK, and whose research explores issues related to diversity and inclusivity across the disciplines represented by BAFTSS (film, television and screen studies). 


Please send your application, or any queries you may have, to Eve Benhamou (; FTC representative) and Gábor Gergely ( We are also happy to provide guidance for applicants to identify a host institution, if needed. 

See below for information on the events that run in the inaugural 2019/20 New Connections scheme.

BAFTSS New Connections 2019/20

In 2019, BAFTSS launched its inaugural season of ‘New Connections’ Research papers at universities across the UK.


Many of the Association’s members are early career researchers who have completed their PhDs and now lack supervisory support, but are not yet in secure, salaried positions within academia. We were pleased that the ‘BAFTSS ECR Mentorship Scheme’ that we launched in Spring 2019 had been able to ‘twin’ people in this detached and precarious situation with experienced academic mentors across the UK.


‘New Connections’ emerges from that Scheme. It encourages ECRs to broker a fresh relationship with an Institution and provides travel bursaries to enable them to present their research to a new audience. 


Information about the 2019-20 Season of research talks is given below. We would like to thank our ECR mentees for applying to take part and are extremely grateful to colleagues at the various host universities for being so welcoming.


Wednesday October 30th 2019, 2 – 5:00pm, Dr Matthew Robinson: ‘An “Emotional Moment”: The Execution of Ruth Ellis in Pierrepoint (2005)

Dr. Robinson’s talk is hosted by the Centre for Film, Media, Discourse and Culture, Faculty of Arts, University of Wolverhampton (Location: Room  MC226, Millennium City Building, City Campus). For further details please contact Dr Benjamin Halligan ( Director of the Doctoral College, or Dr Fran Pheasant-Kelly, (, Director Centre for Film, Media, Discourse and Culture.



Wednesday 13th November 2019, 6 – 7.30pm : Dr Eve Benhamou: “An Expanding Cinematic Universe: Contemporary Disney Animation and Genre in Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018)"

Dr Benhamou’s talk is part of the ‘Film, Media and Global Culture Seminar Series’ at the Centre for Multidisciplinary and Intercultural Inquiry (CMII), University College London (Location: Room 111, Foster Court, Malet Place). For further details please contact Dr Keith B. Wagner ( or Dr Benhamou ( 



Monday 17th February 2020, 5pm: Dr Oliver Kenny: ‘Brits can't do erotica: the impact of nationality on British attitudes towards sexual imagery.’

Dr Kenny’s talk is hosted by the History Research Group,  Bournemouth University (Location: Room W240, Weymouth House). (For further details please contact Dr Austin Fisher, or Dr Oliver Kenny ( 



April 2020 (date to be confirmed): Dr Stella Gaynor: 'Horror According to Netflix: A carefully curated exploration of genre.'

Dr Gaynor’s talk is hosted by the Department of Media, Journalism and Film, The University of Huddersfield.

Her paper will explore a selection of horror original series on Netflix, and unlock through industrial analysis the methods, models, and strategies used by Netflix to make and promote a horror series. Using textual analysis of Hemlock Grove, Haunting of Hill House, Black Summer, Kingdom and Chambers, this paper will ask what the model of Netflix means for the development of serialized horror.

For more information, please contact Professor Catherine Johnson ( at the University of Huddersfield.  

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