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CSTPR seminar: New coordinates for environmental documentary: How have nature and environmental...

Thursday, August 03, 2017, 3:00PM - 4:00PM


Bienvenido León

School of Communication, University of Navarra, Spain


Center for Science and Technology Policy Research

1333 Grandview Avenue, Boulder

Full title

New coordinates for environmental documentary: How have nature and environmental documentaries changed since the internet arrived?


This talk will be available via live webcast. To view it, please go to Adobe Connect and log in as a guest.


Over 120 years of existence, this chameleon-like genre has adapted to many different circumstances. At the very beginning audiences took it for granted that documentary was a legitimate representation of the historical world. However, shortly afterwards, it needed to struggle in a constant search for legitimation. And this was especially relevant when it needed to adapt to a competitive television environment dominated by entertainment, by hybridizing with fiction formats. More recently, the digital tsunami seems to have added a new important driving force: the search for participation. And this new coordinate has added a new challenge, since the referential value of documentary cannot be taken for granted anymore. In the talk, I will discuss some ideas and show a few examples that illustrate how environmental documentary has evolved, in order to adapt to this new ecosystem.


Bienvenido León is associate professor of science journalism and television production at the University of Navarra, Spain. He has also worked as a documentary film director, scriptwriter and producer for over 30 years. He teaches regularly in other universities of Spain and other countries, and has been a visiting scholar at the University of North Carolina and the University of Otago. His research has mainly focused on audio-visual science and environment communication. He is the founding director of the Research Group on Science Communication at this university, and currently the director of the international research project “Online video as a tool for communicating science”. He has published 21 books as author or editor and over 60 peer-reviewed papers or book chapters. Before joining the academic field, he worked as a TV journalist for a decade. He has founded and directed two environmental film festivals: Telenatura (2001-2013) and Urban TV (2002-2014).


Free and open to the public.