Dr Olivier Driessens


Olivier Driessens is an LSE Fellow in the Department of Media and Communications. He was previously a research and teaching assistant in the Department of Communication Sciences at Ghent University and a research assistant at Antwerp University. During Spring term 2012, Olivier was at Goldsmiths as Associate Research Student.

Olivier earned his PhD in Communication Sciences at Ghent University (2013). He has an MA in Sociology (Leuven University) and an MA in Communication Sciences (Ghent University).

Olivier is Young Scholar (YECREA) representative in the Temporary Working Group Mediatization of ECREA and member of the Reviewers Board of The International Journal of e-Politics.

Research interests

As a media sociologist, Olivier is particularly interested in media, cultural and social change. In his doctoral dissertation he has studied the celebritisation of society and culture, or the changing nature and embedding of celebrity in social fields and people’s everyday lives. Apart from its strong theoretical focus, the dissertation also aimed to contribute to methodology and our empirical understanding of celebrity by focusing on the regional celebrity cultures in Flanders (Belgium) through in-depth interviews with celebrities.

His work on celebritisation unites two of his primary research foci, namely celebrity studies and mediatisation studies. Other interests include field theory, media culture, media and protest, political engagement, provocation and controversy. In his future research he plans to further develop this expertise and also pay more attention to critical approaches to promotional culture.


Olivier is leading seminars for Theories and Concepts in Media and Communications II (MC418) and Methods of Research in Media and Communications (MC4M). He will be supervising MSc dissertations.

He has previously been involved in teaching several research seminars and in assisting courses on Media Sociology at Ghent University, where he gave guest lectures on mediatisation and on the in-depth interview as well.


Driessens, O. (2014). Theorizing celebrity cultures: Thickenings of celebrity cultures and the role of cultural (working) memory|. Communications: European Journal of Communication Research, 39(2), 109-127.

Driessens, O. (2013). 'Do (not) go to vote!' Media provocation explained|European Journal of Communication, 28(5), 556-569.

Driessens, O. (2013). The Celebritization of Society and Culture: Understanding the Structural Dynamics of Celebrity Culture|International Journal of Cultural Studies, 16(6), 641-657.

Driessens, O. (2013). Celebrity capital: Redefining celebrity using field theory|. Theory and Society, 42(5), 543-560.

Driessens, O. (2013). Being a celebrity in times of its democratization: A case-study from the Flemish region|Celebrity Studies, 4(2), 249-253.

Encheva, K., Driessens, O., & Verstraeten, H. (2013). The mediatization of deviant subcultures: An analysis of the media-related practices of graffiti writers and skaters|MedieKultur: Journal of Media and Communication Research, 29(54), 8-25.

Driessens, O. (2013). Book review 'Cultures of Mediatization' (Andreas Hepp) and 'The Mediatization of Culture and Society' (Stig Hjarvard)|Communications, 38(4), 451-455.

Driessens, O., Joye, S., & Biltereyst, D. (2012). The X-factor of charity: A critical analysis of celebrities' involvement in the 2010 Flemish and Dutch Haiti relief shows|. Media, Culture & Society, 34(6), 709-725. 

Driessens, O., Raeymaeckers, K., Verstraeten, H., & Vandenbussche, S. (2010). Personalization according to politicians: A practice theoretical analysis of mediatization|. Communications: European Journal of Communication Research, 35(3), 309-326.

Devroe, I., Driessens, O., & Verstraeten, H. (2010). ‘Minority Report’: Ethnic Minorities’ Diasporic News Consumption and News Reading. In S. Van Bauwel, E. Van Damme & H. Verstraeten (Eds.), Diverse mediawerelden. Hedendaagse reflecties gebaseerd op het onderzoek van Frieda Saeys (pp. 233-249). Gent: Academia Press.

Driessens, O. (2010). Boekbespreking "De Celebritysupermarkt|" (Hilde Van den Bulck & Sil Tambuyzer). Tijdschrift voor Communicatiewetenschap, 38(4), 380-381.

Email:  o.driessens@lse.ac.uk|