About Us

The Network was established in 2006 by Ian Macdonald as the ‘Re-thinking the Screenplay group’ when it became clear that there was interest across the world towards research on screenwriting, but individual scholars tended to be isolated. At that time screenplays were not the focus of sustained analysis.

Screenwriting, the generation of ideas and the process of development of the screen idea before production are complex collaborative creative activities. They raise questions about existing and future industrial practice, structures, and power, about cultural variation and influence and about individual taste, judgement and habitus.

The screenplay is both process and product, surrounded by industrial convention and rarely questioned as an appropriate industrial tool. Its defining conditions and values are often assumed to be ‘natural’ rather than critically understood. The research undertaken aims to demonstrate where the screenplay form is limited, to offer reasons why this is the case, and to suggest other possibilities for expressing, or understanding the expression of, the screen idea.
The value of research activity on screenwriting is important both for practitioners and for theorists, if indeed these are separate. It lies in the comprehensive critical analysis of the screenplay form and of screen idea development practice from different informed viewpoints, in mapping conventional practice and in the possible development of potential forms of expression and documentation of the screen idea outside the current conventions.

The SRN constitution can be found here:  SRN Constitution 2012 am 2014.

In September 2018 at the 10th SRN Conference in Milan, Italy, the Seventh Annual General Meeting elected the new executive council (2018-19). The members of the council are:

Carmen Sofía Brenes
Chairperson, full professor of poetics and screenwriting at the School of Communication of Universidad de los Andes (Chile), Carmen is interested in the practical and professional current validity of Aristotle’s Poetics in screenwriting. Following Paul Ricoeur and Juan José García-Noblejas, she sees an analogy between the theory of human action and the theory of the audiovisual text. She has published two books on screenwriting, and has conducted screenwriting and film reception workshops in Latin America and Europe. She also works as a consultant on screenwriting projects in Chile, Uruguay, Colombia, Ecuador, Italy, Spain and Belgium. She has a page at Academia.edu and tweets with @csbrenes

John Finnegan,  Early career representative, worked in the film industry for over fourteen years. He started his career as an assistant director, before moving into post production, where he became the head of post production for a leading European production house. In 2012 he received a Masters degree in screenwriting at Bournemouth University and in 2017 he completed a PhD in the subject from Bangor University. John is a senior lecturer in screenwriting at Falmouth University, where he runs the MA Writing for Script and Screen programme. He divides his time between lecturing at University and writing and producing for film.

Margaret McVeigh, Treasurer, PhD is Senior Lecturer and Head of Screenwriting and Contextual Studies at Griffith Film School, Griffith University, Brisbane. She has an industry background in publishing, corporate communications and education and holds a PhD in Film and New Media Narrative. Margaret has worked in the Film and Television industries in Australia and the UK, including as Commissioning Editor for John Wiley & Sons Publishers and as a Writer and Education Reviewer for the ABC’s (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Online Education Portal, ABC Splash. Margaret has researched, published and addressed conferences in Asia, Europe, the USA and Australia on Screenwriting and Creativity and the writing and making of Transnational film co-productions. She is co-editor with Carmen Sofia Brenes (Chile) and Patrick Cattryse (Belgium) of Transcultural Screenwriting: Telling Stories for a Global World  (Cambridge Scholars 2017).

Christina Milligan, Newsletter Editor, is a film producer, screenwriter and lecturer at Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand. She is a descendant of the tribe Ngāti Porou, and her industry work is focused principally with Māori stories and Māori practitioners, as reflected in her most recent credits as executive producer of the feature film Mt Zion (2013) and producer of the feature documentary The Price of Peace (2015). Christina researches and publishes on both fiction and nonfiction with a specific focus on indigenous screenwriting and screen production.  www.nzonscreen.com/person/christina-milligan


Paolo Russo, Membership, is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at Oxford Brookes University
(UK) where he researches and teaches screenwriting, story development, screen narratives (feature, short, serial drama), film history, and genres – currently designing an MFA Screenwriting for Film&TV Production. He is on the editorial boards of Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies (Intellect) and L’Avventura – International Journal of Italian Film and Media Landscapes (Il Mulino). You can find a list of his scholarly publications here.

A former script reader, buyer consultant, ghost writer and story editor for feature, and video-game localizer, he is also a professional screenwriter. He co-wrote the feature Three Days of Anarchy, which premiered at the 2006 Tokyo Film Festival and went on to 30+ festivals all over the world. More recently, he has been working on TV serial drama projects, currently in development as Head Writer with Cysa Productions (see here) among others, and as Staff Writer on an animation series (see here).

You can email Paolo at paolo.russo@brookes.ac.uk, tweet him at@PaoloRu92465734, look him up on Academia.edu, and find him on Facebook at paolo.russo.583234.

Claus Tieber, Secretary, is lecturer at the University of Vienna. Head of several research projects. Habiliation (post-doc thesis) about the history of the American screenplay (Schreiben für Hollywood. Das Drehbuch im Studiosystem. Münster et al: Lit Verlag 2008), Publications about storytelling in silent cinema (Stummfilmdramaturgie. Erzählweisen des amerikanischen Feature Films 1917 – 1927. Münster et al: Lit Verlag 2011), Hindi cinema and filmmusic. Website: tieber.wordpress.com

Anna Zaluczkowska, Web Coordinatoris head of screenwriting at the Northern Film School in Leeds and a practising writer. She brings knowledge of industry practice, academic rigour and specialist teaching expertise to the position. She is particularly interested in the development of writing for new technological forms and how screenwriting is taught in higher education. She has run a number of award winning educational projects to develop new practices in this area.  She has a page at Academia.edu

This site is hosted by the University of Leeds

The web pages were developed by Dr Jamie Sherry, lecturer in Screenwriting, Bangor University, UK.
Our warmest thanks for Jamie for the valuable work!