Zeynep Arda, PhD, (1977, Ankara) is an Assistant Professor and the Head of the Visual Communication Design department at Izmir University of Economics, Izmir, Turkey. She received her Ph.D. degree in Communication Sciences at Universidad Jaume I, Castellón, Spain, with her dissertation "Image Becomes Identity 2.0/Yo soy mi imagen 2.0", on online social networks, how they are shaping who we are and how we communicate with one another. She also holds an M.F.A. degree in Graphic Design from Bilkent University (Ankara, Turkey), an M.A. degree in Interaction Design from Domus Academy (Milan, Italy) and a B.S. in Urban and Regional Planning from Middle East Technical University (Ankara, Turkey). Her multicultural and interdisciplinary background forms the basis of her research agenda. Her interest in digital life and new media started with earlier definitions of cyberspace and how virtual communities started to change the way we communicate and express ourselves, and how various human activities migrated from the urban space to the cyberspace. Hence her research interests cover computer-mediated communication, social media, new media, interactive storytelling, interaction design, digital image/identity, as well as city branding and destination marketing. She also worked professionally as a designer and was part of international project teams on various design projects. She passionately believes in the power of communication and design.