Johanna Baker-Dowdell

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Johanna Baker-Dowdell

Johanna Baker-Dowdell

PhD candidate
Journalism, Media and Communications
School of Social Sciences

Room L177, Faculty of Arts, Newnham Campus

0477 000 170 (phone)

Johanna is a PhD candidate in the Journalism, Media and Communications program. Her research investigates how social media texts are used by newspapers as news sources in reporting crisis events. This research is supervised by Dr Katrina Clifford and Dr Craig Norris.

Career summary



Thesis title


Date of award

Bachelor of Arts (Communication Studies)


University of Newcastle

April 1996

BA (1st class honours)

Understanding How Social Media is used as a News Source During Crisis Events

University of Tasmania

Dec 2013


Johanna worked as a research assistant in 2016 while completing her PhD at the University of Tasmania. She studied journalism and public relations at the University of Newcastle in New South Wales, graduating with a bachelor of Arts in 1995, and then worked at newspapers in Australia and the UK before trying her hand at marketing and public relations for two industry associations. Johanna launched her writing and public relations business Strawberry Communications in 2007 and published the book Business & Baby on Boardin 2013.

Research Themes

Johanna's research aligns to the University's theme of Culture and Society. Her research interests include understanding how social media is impacting traditional news media and journalistic practice, specifically how social media texts are used in crisis reporting. Crises, as fast-paced, highly emotive and newsworthy events, provide a solid platform to study the changing nature of journalistic practice and how social media has impacted that.