A/Prof. Kristy Hess



Associate Professor of Communication


Faculty of Arts and Education


SCCA Arts & Ed


Geelong Waurn Ponds Campus


Bachelor of Philosophy, University of South Australia, 2014
Bachelor of Arts, Deakin University, 2001


+61 3 556 33118

Biography summary

Kristy Hess is a leader of research into local and community media at Deakin University. She is also the academic director of the CPA/Deakin community journalism program and an editorial board member of the international journal Digital Journalism. Kristy is currently guest editing special issues of Journalism Studies (UK) and the Australian Journalism Review. She is also the co-author of Local Journalism in a Digital World (Palgrave MacMillan) with her colleague Lisa Waller.  Kristy is the recipient of an Office of Teaching and Learning Citation (2014) for contribution to enhancing student learning and was nominated for a National Award Teaching Award (2015).

Research interests

 local, hyperlocal and community news; media power and society, social capital, media and civic participation, 'naming and shaming' in digital times, media at the margins of society, Bourdieusian scholarship

Teaching interests

Country Press Australia/Deakin University academic coordinator

Units taught



Honours supervision 


- National Teaching Excellence Award nomination, 2015

- OLT Citation for teaching excellence, 2014

- APA Scholarship PhD University of South Australia 2010-2013

- Deakin University Vice Chancellor Award for Teaching Excellence ,2009

- Deakin University Vice Chancellor Award for Contribution to Rural and Regional Engagement, 2009

- Dean's award for excellence in team teaching 2009

- Deakin University Faculty of Arts & Education teaching award for an early career
teacher, 2008.


FOR CURRENT RESEARCH OUTPUT PLEASE VIEW https://deakin.academia.edu/KristyHess


Hess K & Waller L (2017) Local journalism in a digital world, Palgrave MacMillan, London.


Gutsche, R & Hess K (2017) Contesting communities: Journalism and social order in a fragmented media world, Journalism Studies, UK.

Call for Papers: http://explore.tandfonline.com/page/ah/journalism-studies-resource-centre/calls-for-papers/contesting-communities

Hess K and Waller L (2016) Rethinking media and local government, Australian Journalism Review.


- digitally-mediated civic participation in rural/regional Australia.

- Edward Wilson Trust research into rural/regional media  (with Julie Freeman & Lisa Waller, Deakin University)

- Media at the Margins (with Lisa Waller & Kristin Demetrious, Deakin University)

- journalism and social order (with Ted Gutsche, Florida International University)

- theorising news media and cultural borders/boundaries (with Professor Ian Richards, UniSA)

- rethinking Bourdieu and centre/periphery relations (with Julie Rowlands, Deakin University)

- media shaming in a digital era (with Lisa Waller, Deakin University)


Filter by


Media hierarchies of attention: news values and Australia's Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse

Lisa Waller, Tania Dreher, Kristy Hess, Kerry McCallum, Eli Skogerbo

(2020), Vol. 21, pp. 180-196, Journalism studies, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Moral compass: How a small-town newspaper used silence in a hyper-charged controversy

K Hess, L Waller

(2020), Journalism, C1


Placeification: The Transformation of Digital News Spaces into "Places" of Meaning

R Gutsche,, K Hess

(2020), Digital Journalism, C1


Mining the depleted "Rivers of Gold": Public notices and the sustainability of Australian local news in a digitised democracy

K Hess

(2019), pp. 88-99, Digitizing democracy, Abingdon, Eng., B1


Geographies of journalism: the imaginative power of place in making digital news

Robert Gutsche Jr., K Hess

(2019), Abingdon, Eng., A1


Hyperlocal journalism

LIsa Waller, Kristy Hess

(2019), pp. 1-6, International encyclopaedia of journalism studies, Hoboken, N.J., B1


Navigating the scholarly terrain: introducing the digital journalism studies compass

S Eldridge, K Hess, E Tandoc, O Westlund

(2019), Vol. 7, pp. 386-403, Digital journalism, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Editorial: diversity in digital journalism

K Hess, S Eldridge, E Tandoc, O Westlund

(2019), Vol. 7, pp. 549-553, Digital journalism, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Total eclipse of the social: what journalism can learn from the fundamentals of Facebook*

K Hess, R Gutsche

(2019), Vol. 13, pp. 1013-1017, Journalism practice, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Communication life line? ABC emergency broadcasting in rural/regional Australia

J Freeman, K Hess, L Waller

(2018), Vol. 4, pp. 342-360, Communication research and practice, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Contesting communities: the problem of journalism and social order

R Gutsche, K Hess

(2018), Vol. 12, pp. 136-145, Journalism practice, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Forever in our hearts: the births, deaths and marriages column in the Sydney Morning Herald, 1831-1860

Kristy Hess, Sarah Pinto

(2018), pp. 1-17, Media history, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Local and hyperlocal journalism

K Hess, Lisa Waller

(2018), pp. 144-159, Oxford research encyclopedia of communication, Oxford, Eng., B1


Shifting foundations: journalism and the power of the 'common good'

K Hess

(2017), Vol. 18, pp. 801-816, Journalism, London, Eng., C1


Community and hyperlocal journalism: a 'sustainable' model?

K Hess, L waller

(2017), pp. 194-203, Routledge companion to digital journalism studies, Abingdon, Eng., B1


Local journalism in a digital world

K Hess, L Waller

(2017), London, Eng., A1


Making inroads: a critical examination of the ABC's commitment to local news

J Freeman, K Hess, L Waller

(2017), Vol. 165, pp. 117-130, Media international Australia, London, Eng., C1


Journalism and the "social sphere": reclaiming a foundational concept for beyond politics and the public sphere

K Hess, R Gutsche

(2017), pp. 1-16, Journalism Studies, Abingdon, Eng., C1


River flows and profit flows: the powerful logic driving local news

K Hess, L Waller

(2016), Vol. 17, pp. 263-276, Journalism studies, Abingdon, Eng., C1-1


Hip to be hyper: The subculture of excessively local news

K Hess, L Waller

(2016), Vol. 4, pp. 193-210, Digital journalism, London, Eng., C1


Ritual power : illuminating the blind spot of births, deaths and marriages in news media research

K Hess

(2016), Vol. 17, pp. 511-526, Journalism : theory practice criticism, Thousand Oaks, Calif., C1


Witness, judge or watchdog?: Journalism and regional courts

K Hess, L Waller

(2016), pp. 120-128, Locating crime in context and place, Sydney, N.S.W., B1


Power to the virtuous? Civic culture in the changing digital terrain

K Hess

(2016), Vol. 17, pp. 925-934, Journalism studies, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Rethinking news media and local government: journalism, politics and symbolic power

K Hess, L waller

(2016), Vol. 38, pp. 5-17, Australian journalism review, Bathurst, N.S.W., C1


Twitter feeders: an analysis of dominant 'voices' and patterns in a local government mosque controversy

L Waller, K Hess, K Demetrious

(2016), Vol. 38, pp. 47-60, Australian journalism review, Adelaide, Sth. Aust., C1


Community journalism in Australia: a media power perspective

K Hess, L Waller

(2015), Vol. 4, pp. 2-9, Community journalism, Texas, U.S., C1


Friend or foe? Regional newspapers and the power of Facebook

K Hess, K Bowd

(2015), Vol. 156, pp. 19-28, Media international Australia, Thousand Oaks, Calif., C1


The digital pillory: media shaming of 'ordinary' people for minor crimes

K Hess, L Waller

(2014), Vol. 28, pp. 101-111, Continuum: journal of media & cultural studies, Abingdon, England, C1


Geo-social journalism: reorienting the study of small commercial newspapers in a digital environment

K Hess, L Waller

(2014), Vol. 8, pp. 121-136, Journalism practice, Abingdon, England, C1


Are there news gaps in rural/regional Australia? Researching media plurality beyond Finkelstein

L Waller, K Hess, M Ricketson

(2014), Vol. 36, pp. 157-169, Australian journalism review, Adelaide, S.Aust., C1


Making connections: mediated social capital and the small town press

K Hess

(2014), Vol. 16, pp. 482-496, Journalism studies, London, Eng., C1-1


Breaking Boundaries : recasting the "local" newspaper as "geo-social" news in a digital landscape

K Hess

(2013), Vol. 1, pp. 48-63, Digital journalism, Abingdon, Eng., C1


Tertius Tactics: "Mediated Social Capital" as a Resource of Power for Traditional Commercial News Media

K Hess

(2013), Vol. 23, pp. 112-130, Communication Theory, C1


News judgements: a critical examination of reporting non-convictions for minor crimes

K Hess, L Waller

(2013), Vol. 35, pp. 59-70, Australian journalism review, Magill, South Australia, C1


"Honk Against Homophobia": Rethinking Relations Between Media and Sexual Minorities

P Venzo, K Hess

(2013), Vol. 60, pp. 1539-1556, Journal of Homosexuality, C1


'The Snowtown we know and love' : small newspapers and heinous crimes

K Hess, L Waller

(2012), Vol. 21, pp. 116-125, Rural society, Maleny, Qld., C1


Blockbusters for the youtube generation : a new product of convergence culture

K Hess, L Waller

(2011), Vol. 19, pp. 1-12, Refractory : a journal of entertainment media, Melbourne, Vic., C1


Packaged good: Responses from australian journalism educators on the reporting diversity project

K Hess, L Waller

(2011), Vol. 17, pp. 11-26, Pacific Journalism Review, C1


The pillory effect : media, the courts and the punitive role of public shaming in Australia

L Waller, K Hess

(2011), Vol. 16, pp. 229-240, Media and arts law review, Chatswood, N.S.W., C1


Teaching journalism students and regional reporters how to work with cultural diversity

K Hess, L Waller

(2010), pp. 137-152, Asia Pacific media educator, Wollongong, N.S.W., C1


Play it again, Sam : How journalists cashed in on Youtube's favourite koala

K Hess, L Waller

(2009), Vol. 31, pp. 75-84, Australian journalism review, St. Lucia, Qld., C1


An exploratory study of relationships between local government media officers and journalists in regional Australia

K Hess, L Waller

(2008), Vol. 9, pp. 151-159, Asia Pacific public relations journal, Geelong, Vic., C1-1


Funded Projects at Deakin

Australian Competitive Grants

Breaking silences: Media, marginalised voices and the child abuse royal commission

A/Prof Kerry McCallum, Dr Tanja Dreher, A/Prof Kristy Hess, Prof Lisa Waller, Prof Eli Skogerbo

ARC - Discovery Projects

  • 2020: $5,642
  • 2019: $10,120

Media innovation and the civic future of Australia's country press

A/Prof Kristy Hess, Prof Lisa Waller, Prof Matthew Ricketson, Bruce Morgan

ARC Linkage - Projects

  • 2020: $24,774
  • 2019: $35,025

Other Public Sector Funding

Taking notice: the social and emotional impact of war in a regional Australian community

Dr Sarah Pinto, A/Prof Kristy Hess

  • 2019: $2,844

Industry and Other Funding

Naming and shaming: A multi-perspectival view of media shaming for minor crimes and its relationship to the courts

A/Prof Lisa Waller, A/Prof Kristy Hess

  • 2014: $2,000
  • 2013: $3,000

Mixed Fortunes: An examination of circulation rise and decline in two Victorian news communities

A/Prof Kristy Hess

  • 2016: $4,558

Media innovation and the civic future of Australia's country press

A/Prof Kristy Hess, Prof Lisa Waller, Prof Matthew Ricketson, Bruce Morgan

  • 2019: $20,000


No completed student supervisions to report