European Public Sphere:
Understanding the Role of Mass Media and
Interpersonal Discussion in Shaping Today's European Citizenship
April 10-11, 2014
Belo Media Center (BMC) 5.102
The conference is free and open to the public but registration is greatly appreciated.
Registration is now closed.
This conference seeks to advance the understanding of today's European citizenship. And it does so in a particular way as it takes up the challenge to explore the role of the mass media and people's interpersonal discussion habits about politics in explaining civic and political participatory behaviors that foster a European citizenship.
For years researchers have inquired about the mechanisms that elicit today's European Union. There seems to be a consensus in the academic community that points to certain aspects as being central for the advancement of the European Union. Social identity features, cultural traits, a strong and deliberative public sphere, and sociopolitical elements have all been theorized to provide a healthier, more cohesive, and more participatory European Union.
Nevertheless, how Europeans participate and get involved in the political process is largely mediated, and it has been somewhat overlooked. That is, the ways in which European citizens engage in civic and political activities greatly depend on the effects of the mass media and the ways in which citizens discuss important public issues among themselves. Hence, the importance of studying the role of the mass media and how people discuss relevant issues for public life, perhaps generating a European public sphere.
Drawing from the expertise provided by academics, professionals, and media experts from the USA, the European Union, and Latin America, this conference aims to shed light over all these processes as they shape today's European Citizenship.
Thursday, April 10th
9:00 a.m. Welcome and Introduction
Homero Gil de Zúñiga, University of Texas – Austin
Associate Professor & Director Digital Media Research Program at The Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life
Glenn Frankel, University of Texas – Austin
G.B. Dealey Regents Professor & Director School of Journalism
Stephen Reese, University of Texas – Austinn
Jesse H. Jones Professor & Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
Session 1 (9 a.m. – 12 p.m.)
"Media and Interpersonal Discussion in the European Public Sphere"
François Heinderyckx, Université Libre de Bruxelles
News media in the EU: Missed Opportunities in Fostering a European Public Sphere
Karolina Koc-Michalska, SciencesCom & Chris Wells, University of Wisconsin – Madisonn
Encountering difference in communication events:the occurrence and impact of cross-cutting opinion in talk, mass media, and Web use
Claes de Vreese, University of Amsterdam
Messages and Talking: Effects of Media and Interpersonal Communication on EU Evaluations
Session 2 (1 p.m. – 4 p.m.)
"Learning About European Politics in a Comparative Context"
Jörg Matthes, University of Vienna
The Determinants of Political Discussion in Europe: A Six-Country Study
Carlos Muriel, Salvador Alvídrez, Nilsa Téllez, Alondra Salazar, Ana Sáenz, Daniel Alvarado, and Mary Martínez, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon
Effects of Digital Media on Citizens’ Opinions: Framing the YPF’s Oil Company Conflict between Spain and Argentina
Friday, April 11th
Session 3 (9 a.m. – 1 p.m.)
"New Approaches to European Citizenship"
Jacob Groshek, Boston University
Anti-austerity in the Eurocrisis: Modeling Protest Movements Through Online-Mobile-Social Media Use and Content
Thomas Johnson1, Rachel Mourao1, Stephanie Geise2, & Joseph Yoo1, University of Texas – Austin1 Universität Erfurt2
Is the EU Suffering a Democratic Deficit? The Interplay between Media Preference, Economic Perception and Support for Democracy in the European Union
José María García de Madariaga, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos
Life Beyond Conventional Means: Promises and Perils of Journalism in Spain
Dhavan Shah1, Alexander Hanna1, Chris Wells1, Peter Maurer2, Lewis Friedland1, & Jörg Matthes2, University of Wisconsin – Madison1 University of Vienna2
Debates as Moments of National Conversation and Polarization Online: A Computational Approach to Understanding the French and U.S. Presidential Elections
Presenter's Brief Biographies
Claes De Vreese
Paper title: “Messages and Talking: Effects of media and interpersonal communication on EU evaluations”
Claes H. de Vreese is Professor and Chair of Political Communication in The Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) in the Department of Communication Science at the University of Amsterdam. He is the founding Director of the Center for Politics and Communication and Editor of the International Journal of Public Opinion Research. Finally, he is Adjunct Professor of Political Science and Journalism at the University of Southern Denmark. He has been a visiting fellow/professor at Harvard University, Zurich University, and the Netherlands Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS).
Paper Title: "Anti-austerity in the Eurocrisis: Modeling Protest Movements through Online-Mobile-Social Media Use and Content"
Jacob Groshek, Ph.D. (Indiana University, 2008) is an Assistant Professor at Boston University. His research interests include the democratic utility of communication technologies and the ways in which the structure, content and uses of emerging media may influence political change in transnational spaces. Additional research pursuits include applied econometric analyses, data mining, and media ethics. He regularly publishes in leading peer-reviewed publications and recent work is featured inJournal of Communication, New Media & Society, and Social Science Computer Review, as well as edited volumes with Sage, Routledge, and Oxford. He sits on the editorial board ofCommunication Yearbook and is an active reviewer for more than a dozen communication research journals.
Paper Title: "News media in the EU: Missed Opportunities in Fostering a European Public Sphere"
François Heinderyckx is professor at Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) where he teaches media sociology and political communication. His research interests include journalism and news media, political communication, audience studies and media literacy. He is a Chang-Jiang Scholar Professor at Communication University of China (2013-2016) and currently a visiting scholar at the City University of New York, Graduate School of Journalism. François Heinderyckx was among founding members of the European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA) in 2005 and was the president of the association from its creation until 2012. He is the 2013-2014 President of the International Communication Association (ICA).
Thomas Johnson, Rachel Mourao, Stephanie Geise and Joseph Yoo
Paper Title: ”Is the EU Suffering a Democratic Deficit? The Interplay between Media Preference, Economic Perception and Support for Democracy in the European Union"
Thomas J. Johnson, Ph.D., University of Washington, is the Amon G. Carter Jr. Centennial Professor in the School of Journalism, University of Texas at Austin. His research has focused on the credibility of the Internet and its components, the uses and gratifications of the Internet and its components, selective exposure and the Internet, and the Internet and political attitudes and behaviors. Johnson has authored or co-edited four books, has more than 50 refereed journal articles published or in press and 19 book chapters.
Karolina Koc-Michalska and Chris Wells
Paper Title: "Encountering difference in communication events: the occurrence and impact of cross-cutting opinion in talk, mass media, and Web use"
Karolina Koc-Michalska is Assistant Professor at SciencesCom – Audencia School of Management and an associated researcher with the Centre for Political Research CEVIPOF at Sciences-Po Paris, France. Her research focuses on electoral studies and political communication, especially the role of social networks in Western politics and their impact on political engagement. She is also interested in the campaigning effects, media influence on election outcomes and original methods to study the online public spheres.
José María García de Madariaga, Paper title: "Life beyond conventional means: Promises and perils of journalism in Spain."
José María García de Madariaga is a professor at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos I of Madrid (URJC), in which Faculty of Communication Sciences has taught subjects related to Journalism, Online Democracy and Digitization. In 2003 he received his PhD from the Universidad Complutense of Madrid with a dissertation about the counter informative influences in mainstream media in the digital era. Since then, he has developed individual and collective researching works centred on the influence of digitization on the processes of social communication, especially in journalism and citizenship. Among them is his book El periodismo en el Siglo XXI: Una profesión en crisis ante la digitalización (Journalism in the 21st century: A profession in crisis facing the digitization).
Paper Title: “The Determinants of Political Discussion in Europe: A Six-Country Study"
Jörg Matthes (PhD, University of Zurich) is professor of communication science at the Department of Communication, University of Vienna, Austria, where he chairs the division of advertising research and media effects. His research focuses on advertising effects, the process of public opinion formation, news framing, persuasion, and empirical methods.
He chairs the Methods division of the German Communication Association (DGPuK), and he is Associate Editor of the journal Communication Methods & Measures.
Carlos Muriel, Salvador Alvídrez, Nilsa Téllez, Alondra Salazar, Ana Sáenz, Daniel Alvarado, and Mary Martínez
Paper Title: “Effects of Digital Media on the citizens’ Opinions: Framing the YPF’s Oil Company Conflict between Spain and Argentina
Carlos Muñiz, PhD (Universidad de Salamanca, 2007) is Professor at the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon (Mexico), Coordinator of the Political Communication Laboratory (LACOP) and Leader of the Research Group of “Political Communication, Public Opinion and Social Capital”. He also coordinates the posgraduate Specialization in Political Marketing and Media Management. His research lines focus on the media effects analysis, the communicative practices impact on political attitudes, the media framing of events, and the study of the media portrayals of minorities. Author or coauthor of over 100 publications and editor of several books, among them the one titled “Communication, Politics and Citizenship. Current Contributions to the Study of Political Communication” (Fontamara, 2011).
Dhavan Shah, Alexander Hanna, Chris Wells, Peter Maurer, Lewis Friedland & Jörg Matthes
Paper Title: ” Debates as Moments of National Conversation and Polarization Online:
A Computational Approach to Understanding the French and U.S. Presidential Elections"
Dhavan V. Shah is the Louis A. & Mary E. Maier-Bascom Professor at the University of Wisconsin, where he is Director of the Mass Communication Research Center (MCRC) and Scientific Director in the Center for Health Enhancement System Studies (CHESS). Shah’s research focuses on communication influence on social judgments, civic and political engagement, and health support and behavior. Across these domains of work, he has increasingly applied computational techniques to social science questions, exploring the role of social media harvesting, machine text coding, communication network mapping, and “big data” analytics.