In October 2020, the Department of Communication relaunched the Center for Communication and Civic Engagement as the Center for Journalism, Media and Democracy (CJMD). The relaunch reflects significant shifts over recent decades in media and politics and evolving efforts to understand contemporary democracy as it is being shaped by digital-era communication cultures, tools, platforms, policies and practices.
The new Center marked its inauguration by hosting “Media and Politics in the US Presidential Election: A Virtual Roundtable.”
Discussion topics included:
- The link between eroding trust in institutions and our increasingly dysfunctional media landscape
- The role journalism plays among polarized electorates
- The ways current mediated activism works to strengthen and to undermine democracy
About the Speakers:
Lance Bennett received his Ph.D. in political science from Yale University in 1974, and has taught since then at the University of Washington, where he is Ruddick C. Lawrence Professor Communication and Professor of Political Science. He is also founder and director of the Center for Communication and Civic Engagement (soon to be the Center for Journalism, Media and Democracy). The Center is dedicated to understanding how communication processes and technologies can enhance citizen engagement with social life, politics, and global affairs. The work at CJMD emphasizes student involvement with research and community partnerships.
Matthew Powers is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication, and Co-Director of the Department’s Center for Journalism, Media and Democracy. His research explores transformations in contemporary journalism through a cross-national comparative lens, and his writings have been published in Journal of Communication, New Media & Society, and the International Journal of Press/Politics, among others. With Adrienne Russell, he is the editor of Rethinking Media Research for Changing Societies (2020, Cambridge University Press). Bringing together leading scholars of media and public life, the book asks how media researchers can make sense of the massive changes confronting politics and media.
Adrienne Russell is the Mary Laird Wood Professor of Communication and Associate Director of the Center for Communication and Civic Engagement. Her research focuses on the digital-age evolution of activist communication and journalism and explores communication related to climate change and social justice. She is editor, together with Matt Powers, of “2K,” a special section of the journal Social Media + Society that is dedicated to public scholarship related to media and technology and serves on the editorial boards of Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism; Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media; Kaleidoscope: The Journal of Alternative Media and Social Movements, and Mimesis International publishing house. She has written extensively on the ways national and transnational media systems are evolving in the networked era, and on how journalists, activists, technologists, media publics and others shape information products and spaces.