December theme: Useful Animation

Deadline: December 5, 2021

With its December theme, Animation Studies 2.0 wishes to look beyond the employment of animation to recount fictional stories. Indeed, the aim of this theme is to map the many useful uses that can be made of this medium and how they have evolved in time. Nowadays, the presence of animation has become pervasive in our daily lives. When using our electronic devices, often it is interface animation that enables us to perform micro-interactions or demonstrates to us the stage of a process. Similarly, we tend to rely always more frequently on animated maps to find our destinations when going about in unfamiliar environments. Animation has also a long history of being employed to educate, instruct, and even advertise.

In what ways has practice around useful animation changed across the decades? Who produces and who commissions nowadays this typology of animation? How has the advent of the digital impacted useful animation production? These are only some of the questions that this month’s theme wishes to find an answer to. We thus invite posts from practitioners and theorists alike addressing the many possible useful employments of animation from any perspective.

Topics may include but are not limited to:

  • historical accounts of useful animation;  
  • useful animation in the digital age;
  • instructional animation;
  • educational animation;
  • animation and advertising;
  • animated maps;
  • animated interfaces;
  • useful animation and its sponsors;
  • the spectatorship of useful animation;
  • useful animation and the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Posts of between 600 and 900 words, which discuss any aspect of the above topic are welcome. Contributors are encouraged to include clips and at least one image to support their posts. Please also include a short bio and 3 keywords. All permissions are the responsibility of the contributor. Please contact the managing editor Cristina Formenti ( with submissions or questions.