Nicole DahmenUniversity of Oregon (UO) School of Journalism and Communication (SOJC) assistant professor Nicole Dahmen has been chosen to receive a Faculty Seed Grant to fund her project, “Media Framing of Marriage Equality.”

The Faculty Seed Grant is a competitive grant offered quarterly by the UO to support new programs of research, scholarship, and creativity likely to result in published research, intellectual productivity, creative endeavors and external grant proposals to foundations or agencies.

“Your project was determined to enhance UO’s research portfolio and has the potential to contribute to scholarship on photojournalism and iconic images in a digital age,” Brad Shelton, interim vice president for research and innovation says in the award letter.

Dahmen is currently working with two graduate students and one undergraduate student on the project.

“I am delighted that my research proposal was selected for a UO faculty seed grant,” Dahmen says. “The university has tremendous research support, and this grant will help to advance my research on photojournalism in the age of digital news and social media.”

“The project’s significance is in its ability to understand how the news media are framing one of the largest political and social issues of the current age, marriage equality,” she says.

Dahmen notes there are a number of issues on the public agenda and marriage equality is one of the issues. “The considerations surrounding marriage equality are fueling increasing debate in both politics and religion.”

She says it’s crucial to have a clear understanding of how the media frames marriage equality because the media has the ability to set the public agenda.

“While framing studies traditionally focus on textual news coverage, my work on framing marriage equality expands media framing to examine text and photographic news coverage.”

Dahmen is examining the latest news articles and associated photos for her study. She teaches design and ethics courses at the SOJC.

Story by Corinne Boyer, MS ’15