“By weaving together theories of knowledge production, sociological studies of work, and media studies through an incredibly rigorous and innovative ethnographic investigation of start-up culture his dissertation should stand as a benchmark of contemporary interdisciplinary research."

Frédérik Lesage

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Dr. Alberto Lusoli receives Dean of Graduate Studies Convocation Medal

As one of SFU's most outstanding graduate students from the Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology, Dr. Alberto Lusoli is recognized with the Dean of Graduate Studies Convocation Medal. On behalf of SFU, we congratulate Dr. Lusoli on his outstanding achievements.

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By Sarah Close-Humayun
June 01, 2022

Dr. Lusoli’s doctoral thesis, “Make, Measure, Fail, Learn, Repeat. Creative Production in the Startup Episteme” examines how start-up inspired managerial models and organizational theories influence work practices, constitute professional identities and shape collective work cultures. Dr. Lusoli’s research is based on a 22-month ethnographic investigation of Vancouver’s digital and new media industries. Through participation in professional groups, interviews with digital practitioners, and analysis of managerial literature, the research discusses how the concept of start-up has transcended its original meaning as a synonym for early-stage, hi-tech company to become a historically specific way of knowing, of ordering, and of acting in the world.

Dr. Lusoli’s contribution also extends beyond his written thesis. Along with many academic achievements and published works, Dr. Lusoli has been a fixture among academic conferences, most recently presenting at the Communicative Cities Research Network Symposium hosted by the London School of Economics.

Supervisor Dr. Frédérik Lesage of SFU’s School of Communication comments that “Dr. Lusoli has produced what is, without a doubt, the strongest dissertation I have ever had the pleasure of reading, let alone supervising. By weaving together theories of knowledge production, sociological studies of work, and media studies through an incredibly rigorous and innovative ethnographic investigation of start-up culture his dissertation should stand as a benchmark of contemporary interdisciplinary research."

Dr. Lesage goes on to describe Lusoli’s work as “exceptional in its methodological innovation.”

“I am truly honored to be awarded the Dean’s Convocation Medal. My deepest gratitude goes to my family and to my supervisory committee (Frederik Lesage, Svitlana Matviyenko, and Richard Smith), for supporting me throughout this journey especially when I doubted the relevance of my work. A big thanks also to all the wonderful people I met at the School of Communication. Many of the ideas in my dissertation developed from conversations I had with friends, colleagues, students and mentors I met over the last eight years at SFU.”

Dr. Lusoli is a sessional instructor at SFU as well as a postdoc researcher with the Digital Democracies Institute, where he is studying how AI can be better deployed to foster democracy by integrating freedom of expression, commitments to human rights and multicultural participation in the protection against abuse.

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