Dr Tim Highfield

BA (Hons), PhD

Department of Sociological Studies

Lecturer in Digital Media and Society


Tim Highfield
Profile picture of Tim Highfield
+44 114 222 6447

Full contact details

Dr Tim Highfield
Department of Sociological Studies
The Wave
2 Whitham Road
S10 2AH

Tim joined the Department in September 2019 from the University of Amsterdam, where he was Assistant Professor in New Media and Digital Culture (2018-19).

He was previously Vice-Chancellor’s Research Fellow (2015-18) at Queensland University of Technology, where he also completed his PhD in 2011. Tim is also Secretary for the Visual Communication Studies division of the International Communication Association (2018-2020).

Research interests

Tim's research examines critical cultural implications of social and digital media within everyday life. His work focuses in particular on digital cultures and practices with regards to visual, temporal, and political perspectives.

His current research projects include Digital Time, exploring the temporal interventions and applications of digital platforms, and Visual Cultures of Social Media, examining the role of visual content within everyday social media contexts.

His current collaborative research includes the Australian Research Council-funded project Digital Media, Location Awareness, and the Politics of Geodata (with Peta Mitchell, Larissa Hjorth, Agnieszka Leszczynski, and Paul Dourish; 2018-2020), and the forthcoming book Instagram: Visual Social Media Cultures (with Tama Leaver and Crystal Abidin, Polity, 2019).

Research areas

  • Digital methods
  • Visual social media
  • Politics and/of digital media
  • Time and digital media
  • Everyday digital cultures
  • Digital media platforms and their cultural and political interventions


  • Leaver T, Highfield T & Abidin C (2020) Instagram Visual Social Media Cultures. John Wiley & Sons. RIS download Bibtex download
  • Highfield T (2016) Social Media and Everyday Politics. Polity. RIS download Bibtex download

Journal articles


  • 2018-20 Australian Research Council Discovery grant (DP180100174): Digital Media, Location Awareness and the Politics of Geodata
  • 2014-15 Australian Research Council Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) grant: TrISMA: Tracking Infrastructure for Social Media Analysis
Teaching activities
  • Digital Methods
  • Advanced Social Media Research