Michelle Rivera is a champion for equity and inclusion across multiple public sectors. She is a Mellon/ACLS Public Fellow (2017-2019) and the recently appointed Public Engagement Manager for Diversity and Inclusion at the Field Museum. She earned her doctorate in Communication from the Institute of Communications Research, with a graduate minor in Latina/o Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Trained as a qualitative researcher and communications practitioner, Dr. Rivera has taught and mentored communications, PR, advertising, media, and Latina/o studies students at the University of Illinois and the University of Michigan.
In 2015-2016 she was named an Exemplary Diversity Scholar by the National Center for Institutional Diversity (NCID) at the University of Michigan, where she was an Affiliate Faculty member in Digital Studies and a jointly appointed Postdoctoral Fellow/Visiting Scholar at the NCID and the Department of American Culture. Her focus on racial and ethnic marginalization in mainstream media led her to teach and write on this subject in academe. In particular, Dr. Rivera’s work sheds light on the complexities of Latinidad—challenging outmoded and static representations of authenticity that often circulate through Latin(x) popular culture, and which increasingly demand intervention in a global and digital age.
She has been invited to present at media and communications conferences across the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Spain, Finland, Australia, and Argentina. Her published work on global Latin(x) media and popular culture appears in Anti-fandom: Dislike and Hate in the Digital Age; 50 Events that Shaped Latino History: An Encyclopedia of the American Mosaic; The Routledge Companion to Latina/o Media; The Routledge international handbook of children, adolescents and media; and Seeing in Spanish: From Don Quixote to Daddy Yankee.
She is currently writing a book manuscript that will comprise her research on digital audiences and the global crossover of reggaetón music. Dr. Rivera has served as an expert witness on reggaetón in the legal sector and has been interviewed on the subject for RazeTV, Billboard Magazine, Remezcla, and Fusion (now Splinter).
In addition to her academic research, Dr. Rivera's consultative market research and analyses of wide-ranging datasets on US Latin/a(o) identity have contributed to the foundation the first ever Leadership Mastery Institute (LMI) in the Midwest—developed by Latinas On The Plaza—a non-profit organization dedicated to providing career development programs for women of color across professional sectors.
Just Sexual Games and Twenty-Four-Hour Parties? Anti-fans Contest the Global Crossover of Reggaetón Music Online
Dislike, Hate, and Anti-fandom in the Digital Age [in press, 2019]
How Becky G Relaunched Her Music Career — In Spanish
Buzzfeed News [December 21, 2018]
The Business of Reggaeton Style
Business of Fashion [November 15, 2018]
50 Events That Shaped Latino History An Encyclopedia of the American Mosaic
Latin Explosion in Popular Music, 1990s [March 2018]
Maluma: The Pretty, Dirty Boy Who Almost Wasn't
Billboard Magazine [April 20, 2017]
RAZE News: Como Despacito se volvió un hit mundial
RAZEtv [July 10, 2017]
The Routledge Companion to Latina/o Media
Crossover Fail: Flex/Nigga’s 'Romantic Style in da World' [November 19, 2016]
The Unstoppable Rise of Reggaeton
Fusion (now Splinter) [January 25, 2016]
With Dembow in the Mainstream Once Again, How Can We Take Back Reggaeton?
Remezcla [February 24, 2016]
The Routledge International Handbook of Children, Adolescents and Media
Media and Minority Children [July 18, 2013]
Seeing in Spanish: From Don Quixote to Daddy Yankee, 22 Essays on Hispanic Visual Cultures
The Online Anti-Reggaetón Movement: A Visual Exploration