An experience known as Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) is attributed to a pleasant, relaxing tingling sensation in the head, scalp, neck, and spine in response to sensorial stimuli. This term has gained popularity through social media platforms, where content producers share videos that include common ASMR triggers such as whispering, tapping, and brushing. Scientists have started exploring potential causes and effects of this experience in people’s wellbeing as users report finding ASMR-inducing media helpful to reduce anxiety, depression, insomnia, and even chronic pain. It has been observed that ASMRtists, as these media producers are popularly known, use different sound formats – immersive and not so immersive - in their content production. However, there is scarce evidence that suggests that the use of a specific sound format is related to potentially stronger ASMR experiences, thus more health benefits. During this talk, the audience will immerse themselves in a sonic journey to understand what ASMR is, common sound formats found in ASMR-inducing videos and ongoing research findings!
About the speaker
Clau Nader is an audio engineer specialised in immersive sound design for film, TV, audio-visual media, advertising, and sonic art installations. Their work has featured in numerous festivals in Europe, Asia, the USA, and Latin America. Clau is currently conducting doctoral research at the Department of Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media of the University of York, where they also work as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in Sound Production and Postproduction. Her research interests focus on social justice, mental health, and media studies. Clau’s doctoral project explores physiological and psychological responses to different sound formats found in ASMR-inducing media as well as the feasibility of using this type of content as a formal therapeutic intervention to support young people’s mental health. Clau collaborates as part of the ASMR Network and audio-related organisations such as Soundgirls.org, the Audio Engineering Society and the Yorkshire Sound Women Network centring on improving equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility in both the media industries and academia.