Photo of Professor James Lyons

Professor James Lyons

Associate Professor


Extension: 4355

Telephone: 01392 724355

CV for Professor James Lyons

Prof. James Lyons is the author of Selling Seattle, profiled in The New York Times as a book 'a visitor ought to read to truly understand the American cities and regions where they live, work and travel.' Read the profile here.  He has also appeared in The New York Times talking about his research on Starbucks. Read it here. Prof. Lyons was amongst the first scholars to analyse Starbucks' power as a global brand, in his widely-cited Cultural Studies article '‘Think Seattle, act globally’ Speciality coffee, commodity biographies and the promotion of place.'

Prof. Lyons is also the author of Miami Vice, described by Prof. David Thornburn (MIT) in his Cinema Journal review as 'the richest account of a single television program I've ever read', and co-editor of Quality Popular Television , Multimedia Histories: From the Magic Lantern to the Internet, and The Rise of the American Comics Artist: Creators and Contexts. He is one of the founding editors of the film journal Scope and serves on the editorial advisory board.

His current research spans two overlapping areas of interest. The first is the role of the producer, and the role of performance, in American independent cinema, as explored in the book chapters on 'The American Independent Producer and the Film Value Chain' (Beyond the Bottom Line The Producer in Film and Television Studies, edited by Andrew Spicer, Anthony McKenna, Christopher Meir)  and 'Low-flying stars’: the aesthetics of cult stardom in Mumblecore' (Cult Film Stardom: Offbeat Attractions and Processes of Cultification edited by Kate Egan and Sarah Thomas). He has a chapter on American producer Megan Ellison in Indie Reframed: Women Filmmakers and Contemporary American Independent Cinema, edited by Linda Badley, Claire Perkins, and Michele Schreiber.

The second is modes of performance and discourses of risk in recent American independent documentary. His latest book is entitled Documentary, Performance and Risk, and explores how some of the most significant recent American feature documentaries use performance to dramatically animate major categories of risk. You can listen to him being interviewed about his reseach for the Factual America Podcast here.

Prof. Lyons was awarded £50,000 to work with award-winning advertising agency Rubber Republic on a documentary on risk and everyday life as part of the AHRC's REACT Future Documentary scheme. Watch the documentary here: The documentary won the Ramillas Interactive Fund Award at Sheffield International Doc/Fest.

His work on risk has also extended to writing a case study on the visualisation of climate change for the Government Chief Scientific Advisor's report "Innovation: Managing Risk, Not Avoiding it", and he is on the expert panel of the EPSRC-funded network Models to Decisions (M2D), which explores decision-making under uncertainty.