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Broadband Society and Generational Changes

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Fausto Colombo and Leopoldina Fortunati

The role generations play in accepting and shaping digital technologies, and possibly vice versa, is an increasingly relevant issue in contemporary society. For the first time in the academic debate, this volume outlines the theoretical issues and explores some results from empirical researches on the relationship between generations and the media in digital society. The first part of the book deals with the theoretical debate on generations, from Mannheim’s to the revisiting of some classical notions shaped by disciplines as history, demography, marketing and sociology. The second part gathers a selection of researches at international level, with particular attention to the European context. Though each research used specific methodologies, the main approaches focused on media domestication by young and old generations, and on the comparative analyses of different generations in adopting media.

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Fausto Colombo, Leopoldina Fortunati - Introduction. Broadband, Media and Generational Approach: a New Starting Point? -9

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9 Fausto Colombo, Leopoldina Fortunati Introduction. Broadband, Media and Generational Approach: a New Starting Point? The role generations play in accepting and shaping digital technologies, and possibly vice versa, is a particularly significant issue in current studies. For the first time in the academic debate, this volume tries to address the relations between media and generations. One of the main aims of this book is to outline the theoretical debate on the general theme of the relationship between generations and media, focusing especially on the media system as a whole after the spread of broadband. This introduction doesn’t want to deal with the debate over generations nei- ther in its classic version that has accompanied the birth of human sciences, nor in its latest developments. This synthesis will be offered in the first part of the volume by some authors. Here some indications regarding origins and specific contents of each paper will be outlined. This collection of papers is the result of a long process of networking and cultural exchange between scholars in Europe and the selected works were first presented at two major international events: one, ICT and Generations, was held at the conference entitled The Good, The Bad and The Challenging, organised by COST Action 298 in Copenhagen (13-15 May 2009) and the other, Media + Generations, took place in Milan on 11 and 12 September 2009 and was funded by the Italian Ministry of University and Scientific Research. The first part of this two-part book is entitled...

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