Communication and Public Policy

The entire Communication department shares a commitment to research that is relevant to policymakers and the publics they serve. In addition, a number of our faculty are interested in policy as an object of inquiry. This occurs for us along two dimensions. First, the process of designing and implementing policy is a unique communication challenge. How do we best involve people in the process of generating policies relevant to them and their communities? How do strategic media campaigns influence public support for particular policies? How are scientific and technological issues framed within the policymaking process, and in the surrounding media coverage? How is policy best communicated back to stakeholders? Second, studying communication and information policy is a vital part of understanding the contours of public discourse. How is public communication governed? On what assumptions about democracy, culture, and the social good are these policies based? How does the public respond to these policies, and how do new policies shape the broader information landscape?