66th Annual ICA Conference “Communicating with Power”, Fukuoka, June 9-13, 2016


Media and communication scholars gathered in the city of Fukuoka in Japan  for the 66th Annual meeting of the International Communication Association (ICA). The topic of the conference “Communicating with Power” was designed to investigate media and society from the perspective of changing power relations. The notion of power was analyzed in line with the interests of several research sections working in the structures of ICA; this included Communication and Technology, Communication Law and Policy, Game Studies, Mass Communication, Organizational Communication, and so on. Special emphasis was put on the role of researchers and scholars when communicating change (and urgency of media reform and a need for adaptation) to policy makers, NGOs and civil society organizations.

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In line with the main topic of the ICA conference Polish Communication Association organized a panel “Public service media: An idea of the Enlightenment?” which took a long way to identifying the position and future of public service media (PSM) organizations in Europe and beyond. The goal of the session was to bring together a range of scholars able to draw together a diversity of theoretical and methodological approaches to interrogate the idea of PSM in a post-enlightenment, post-mass media, global ecology. Speakers of the panel: Tim Raats and Karen Donders (Free University of Brussels, Belgium), Manuel Puppis and Laia Castro Herrero (University of Fribourg, Switzerland), Corinne Schweizer (London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom), Peter Gross (University of Tennessee, Knoxville, USA), Nick Gross (University of North Carolina, USA), Lizzie Jackson (London South Bank University, UK) and Michał Głowacki (University of Warsaw, Poland)  were asked to explain the necessary shifts in the traditional public broadcasting model. They were also tasked with exploring the ways in which public service media enterprises organize and might re-organize internal structures and production processes in order to become more adaptive to external factors. Among the research questions were: how do we make a PSM fit for the next generations? What kinds of centralized or decentralized organizational structures will be required to ensure evolution? How can scholars critically and objectively examine the internal structures and production ecosystems of public service media firms? What forms of participatory public service media are emergent? How can the traditions of PSM be maintained and/or augmented?

The PCA session in San Juan was chaired by Iwona Hofman ? President of the Polish Communication Association. In addition, Spring 2016 issue of Central European Journal of Communication was officially launched.

Text: Michał Głowacki

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