Contact Info


Dr Andrew McStay


Reader in Advertising and Digital Media



+44 (0)1248 382740


John Philips Hall Annex



I am Director of the Network for the Study of Media and Persuasive Communication at Bangor University where I also lecture on media and cultural economy. My most recent book is Privacy and Philosophy: New Media and Affective Protocol (Peter Lang, 2014). I am also author of Creativity and Advertising: Affect, Events and Process (Routledge, 2013); The Mood of Information: A Critique of Behavioural Advertising (Continuum, 2011); and Digital Advertising (Palgrave-MacMillan, 2009).

I am currently working on an 18-month AHRC Fellowship titled 'Empathic Media: Theory-Building and Knowledge-Exchange with Industry, Regulators and NGOs'. Using research questions co-created with the Information Commissioner’s Office, Committee of Advertising Practice, M&C Saatchi and Privacy International, I am assessing the social, political, legal and industrial consequences of technology companies that collect data about our emotions.

Research interest keywords

Advertising, creativity, digital media, emotional analytics, persuasion, philosophy, politics and privacy.

Media appearances and public engagement:

  • Radio:ABC Australia, BBC Radio 4, BBC Worldwide and BBC Radio Wales to discuss topics broaching technology, advertising, privacy and philosophy. 
  • Journalism: I write for The Conversation on matters involving advertising, technology and privacy. All articles available here. I have have also written for Sparksheet/WPP, an advertising industry publication. See here.
  • Salon: invited discussion member at Privacy, Protection, Publicity: Does your Freedom have Boundaries? Dialogue, Shoreditch, London.

Administrative responsibilities:

  • Director of the Media and Persuasive Communication (MPC) network
  • University interdisciplinary research leader (along with Professor Jerry Hunter (School of Welsh and Dr. John Parkinson (School of Psychology/Wales Centre for Behaviour Change)
  • Director of BA Media
  • Acting Director of MA Digital Media
  • Member of the University-wide Research Communication Strategy Group
  • Member of the Pontio Innovation Strategy Group
  • Examinations Officer

Teaching and Supervision

Current teaching:

Digital Politics, Media and Society (Masters
Contemporary Media Theory (Masters)
Cultural Economy of the Media (Year 2) 
Privacy and Media (Year 2)
Advertising and Media (Year 2)
Media Culture (Year 1)

PhD students:

  • Dyfrig Jones, Convergence and Public Service Broadcasting in the UK, Ireland, and North America (1st supervisor)
  • Dita Legowo, Blurring Intimacy and Distance: An Online Webseries (1st supervisor)
  • Aliah Nur Mansor, Marketing and Online Fan Communities (2nd supervisor)


Collaborative/external activities:

  • Along with colleagues from within Bangor, and Aberystwyth, Brunel, Sheffield and Kings College, I am co-organising a 2-year ESRC Seminar Series (2015-16). This will explore, from multi-disciplinary and multi-end user perspectives, how different aspects of transparency, whether state-imposed, commercially-imposed, peer-imposed, or voluntarily entered into, affect questions of privacy, security, surveillance and trust.
  • Along with colleagues from the Internet Research Group from Aberystwyth University I am leading a Bangor/Aber’ alliance to investigate the role of privacy in Wales. We have held a seminar at the National Library of Wales in May 2013 involving politicians, business leaders, public services and academics, and are developing two projects: the first in media literacy in Wales; the second on SMEs in Wales.
  • I am also leading a project on smoking cessation and behaviour change in Wales through social media. This is an interdisciplinary project involving the Schools of Psychology, Linguistics, Business, Health and Education, as well as Creative Studies and Media.


Journals: New Media and Society (Editor), Telematics and Informatics, and Social Science Computer Review.
Book publishers: Emerald, Routledge and Sage.
Subject associations: Association of Internet Researchers, and International Association for Media and Communication Research.
Trade press: Times Higher Education supplement. 
Funding bodies: AHRC, and international reviewer specializing in new media for Research Foundation Flanders.


2015: Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)​, 'Empathic Media: Theory-Building and Knowledge-Exchange with Industry, Regulators and NGOs' (PI, £166,718)

2014: ESRC Research Seminar Competition, 'DATA - PSST! Debating and Assessing Transparency Arrangements - Privacy, Security, Surveillance, Trust' (CI, £30,000)

2014: Strategic Insight Programme (SIP), ‘Advertising in Wales’ (PI, £2500)

Consultancy: Government and Industry

  • 2015 UK Government, Office for Science, ‘Understanding Influence’ workshop/report.
  • 2015 Information Commissioner’s Office, advisor and network member for the Policy Delivery department.
  • 2015 Committee of Advertising Practice, advisor on ethics of emotion-sensitive technology
  • 2015 Internet Advertising Bureau (Europe), advisor on ethics in digital advertising
  • 2014-2015 Drive Productions (developing wearable technology for experiential marketing events)
  • 2014-2015 Board member and co-developer for Kantara Working Group on developing consent receipts for autonomous digital information management

External Examining

Middlesex University, MSc Media Management, 2013-2016.

University College Falmouth, BA Creative Advertising, 2015-2018

MSA Egypt/University of Bedfordshire, BA Advertising and PR, 2016-2019.

Teaching awards:

  • Learning & Teaching Award (2008) from HEFCE/TQEF recognising excellence in teaching and learning support.
  • Learning & Teaching Award (2007) from HEFCE/TQEF recognising excellence in teaching and learning support.


I am an active member of the Association of Internet Researchers, International Communication Association and MeCCSA.


I maintain a blog at , and can be found on Twitter @digi-ad and @MPCBangor

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