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Mary Lynn Young, PhD, is an associate professor, award-winning academic, university educator and a member of the launch team of The Conversation Canada, a non-profit academic journalism affiliate of the global Conversation network. She is former Associate Dean (Communications and Strategy), Faculty of Arts (2011-2016), director of the UBC Graduate School of Journalism (2008-2011), and acting director (June-December 2007).
Her research interests include gender and the media, newsroom sociology, data and computational journalism and representations of crime. The overarching goal of her work is to link journalism studies, academic expertise and practice through scholarship, teaching and professional engagement. She is also a consultant, public speaker on current media and policy issues, and media commentator.
She has worked as an editor, national business columnist and senior crime reporter at major daily newspapers in Canada and the United States. Certified as a coach in 2013, she has been recognized for her overall contributions, most recently with the 2016 University College Alumni of Influence Award at the University of Toronto. Prior to that she was nominated for the 2013 YWCA Women of Distinction Award in the Education, Training and Development category, and named one of BC’s 100 Women of Influence by the Vancouver Sun in 2010.
Her list of scholarly awards includes: Visiting Fellow at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (RISJ), Oxford University (April-June 2016), the UBC Peter Wall Institute of Advanced Studies Early Career Scholar Award (2009-2010) and the 2007 Rufus Z. Smith Award for the best article published in the American Review of Canadian Studies. The article, “Cross-Border Crime Stories: American Media, Canadian Law, and Murder in the Internet Age,” was co-authored with David Pritchard, University of Wisconsin (Milwaukee). Her teaching awards include: a 2003 teaching award from UBC’s Alma Mater Society and a Freedom Forum teaching fellowship for journalism educators at the University of Indiana in 2000.
Dr. Young participated as an expert witness in the Cornwall Public Inquiry, after producing a comprehensive media analysis about allegations of historical abuse over a 20-year period involving youth in that community.
In 2007, Dr. Young launched the Feminist Media Project in partnership with other feminist academics. The project included a website that provided a feminist perspective on media depictions of missing and murdered women. As part of this work, she was a member of the Board of Directors (2006-2009) at the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre in Vancouver.
Dr. Young completed her PhD at the University of Toronto in 2005 with her doctoral dissertation, Crime Content and Media Economics: Gendered Practices and Sensational Stories, 1950-2000. She was a reporter and editor for a decade at daily newspapers including The Globe and Mail, the Vancouver Sun, the Hamilton Spectator and The Houston Post. Most recently she was a national business columnist at The Globe (2003-2006).
Dr. Young’s current research projects include the impact of data journalism on news norms, practices and organizational routines, and does gender matter in a journalism startup.
Young, Mary Lynn, Alfred Hermida and Johanna Fulda. (Submitted and under review). “What makes for great data journalism? A content analysis of data journalism awards finalists, 2012-2015.”
Hermida, Alfred, and Young, Mary Lynn. 2016. “Finding the Data Unicorn: A hierarchy of hybridity in data and computational journalism.” Digital Journalism, Online First April 7: 1-18.
Young, Mary Lynn. 2016. “Scoop was King: Media Competition, Crime News, and Masculinity.” In Covering Canadian Crime: What Journalists Should Know and the Public Should Question, edited by C. Richardson and R. Smith Fullerton, 217-244. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
Young, Mary Lynn and Alfred Hermida. 2014. “From Mr. and Mrs. Outlier to Central Tendencies: Computational Journalism and Crime Reporting at the Los Angeles Times.” Digital Journalism, 1-17. DOI: 10.1080/21670811.2014.976409. (First published online 21 November 2014).
Young, Mary Lynn, and Alison Beale. 2013. “Canada: A Step Forward? The Paradox of Women in News.” in The Palgrave International Handbook on Women and Journalism, edited by C. Byerly, 109-121. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
Haines-Saah, Rebecca, Joy L. Johnson, Robin Repta, Aleck Ostry, Mary Lynn Young, Rick Sawatzky, Jean Shoveller, Lorraine Greaves, and Pam A. Ratner. 2013. “The privileged normalization of marijuana use: An analysis of Canadian newspaper reporting.” Critical Public Health, 24 (1): 47-61.
Fletcher, Fred, and Mary Lynn Young. 2012. “Political Communication in a Changing Media Environment.” In The Sage Handbook of Political Communication, edited by H. Semetko and M. Scamell, 36-48. London: Sage Publications Ltd.
Voth, James, Rick Sawatzky, Pam Ratner, Mary Lynn Young, Robin Repta, Rebecca Haines-Saah, and Joy Johnson. 2012. “A computer-assisted approach to filtering large numbers of documents for media analyses.” International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 16 (1): 13-30.
Young, Mary Lynn. 2009. “Media Coverage of Youth Abuse in Cornwall, Ont.” in Report of the Cornwall Public Inquiry. The Honourable G. Normand Glaude, Commissioner.
Ostry, Aleck, and Mary Lynn Young and Merrilee Hughes. 2007. “The Quality of Nutritional Information Available on Popular Websites: A Content Analysis.” Health Education Research, 23 (4): 648-655.
Young, Mary Lynn, and David Pritchard. 2006. “Cross-Border Crime Stories: American Media, Canadian Law and Murder in the Internet Age.” American Review of Canadian Studies, 36 (3): 407-426.
Jiwani, Yasmin, and Mary Lynn Young. 2006. “Missing and Murdered Women: Reproducing Marginality in News Discourse.” Canadian Journal of Communication Special Issue on Sexualities, 31 (4): 1-38.
Sparks, Robert, Mary Lynn Young and Simon Darnell. 2006. “Convergence, Corporate Restructuring, and Canadian Online News, 2000-2003.” Canadian Journal of Communication, 31 (2): 391-423.