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CCI PhD Graduate Spotlight: Frances Bachstein, PhD

Frances BachsteinBackground Information

Frances Bachstein graduated with a Ph.D. from the College of Communication and Information with a concentration in Information Sciences. Prior to joining CCI, she earned degrees in classical civilization and history from the University of Tennessee and a master’s degree in history from the University of Kentucky.

What is next for you?

My research agenda will investigate the concept of trust during the inculcation of institutional values and norms. This research is important to the information science field as well as to organizations who want to retain employees and safeguard trade or state secrets.

What did you gain from CCI?

I chose CCI because of the supportive faculty, teaching opportunities, and ability to meld nuclear security and policy with information sciences in my research. During my time as a PhD student, I worked independently and collaboratively on research about employers’ knowledge of acculturation and trust. I contributed to an international SLOAN grant-funded project dealing with trust in scholarly scientific publications. Also, I had academic service opportunities. For example, I was a student member of the School of Information Sciences’ recertification committee to recruit new students.

What courses/instructors were most influential in your doctoral program?
Dr. Suzie Allard recruited me to the School of Information Sciences, and I researched with Dr. Carol Tenopir and Dr. David Nicholas. I was competitively selected and funded to attend the Oxford Institute for Internet (OII) Research Summer Doctoral Program for 2015 in Oxford, UK.

What is your advice for future PhD students?

The CCI program offers the right balance of information and experience, including opportunities to research, teach, present work, and learn the process of being a faculty member. Sometimes it seems like too much. But, in the words of Winston Churchill, “Never give up, never surrender” – CCI faculty are always willing to lend a helping hand or sympathetic ear.


My positive experiences at UT prepared me for my future as a scholar, and I will stay connected to the CCI community.


Prepared by the 2016-2017 CCI Spotlight Task Force: Lindsey Bier, LaVerne Gray, Abhijit Mazumdar, Whitney Tipton