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Conference on crisis communication in Gothenburg

The pandemic has led to a great need for more knowledge about risk and crisis communication. A research field which has long been prioritized at the Department of Journalism, Media and Communication (JMG) at the University of Gothenburg, which is hosting a major international conference this fall.

Covid-19 and the war in Ukraine have lifted risk and crisis communication high on the agenda of the international research community. The number of scientific publications has increased significantly, and a number of new projects have been initiated, both in Sweden and around the world. At the same time, there is a great demand for research results among authorities, corporations, and organizations in order to be better prepared for the next crisis.

Communication is crucial during crises

“It is important to make use of the research results and inspire new knowledge, as well as to put what we know into action”, states Marina Ghersetti, professor at the Department of Journalism, Media and Communication (JMG). “From previous research, we know how crucial communication is in handling and mitigating crises”.

Marina Ghersetti, together with her colleagues, is now responsible for the planning of the seventh international conference on crisis communication,, organized by the European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA), the major European organization for communication researchers.

A citizen perspective

The conference takes place in Gothenburg this autumn, 5-7 October. The theme is Crisis communication from a citizen perspective – urban risks and crises, such as societal unrest, natural disasters, and major accidents.

“We start from the citizen's perspective, i.e., what kind of communication do people need during societal crises in order to protect themselves, understand what is happening and know when the danger is over”, says Marina Ghersetti. “This perspective differs from other research on risk and crisis communication that focuses on reputation management of organizations and companies when something goes wrong, for example as with Dieselgate, Volkswagen's emissions scandal”.

She hopes that the conference will be an opportunity for both researchers and practitioners to meet and exchange their experiences.

“Those who work strategically and operationally with crisis communication are welcome to participate. As researchers, we need input from the outside world so that our continued research is relevant, and the practitioners, for their part, can benefit from taking part in new research”.

A pre-conference for PhD students

For doctoral students, a pre-conference is held the day before, 4 October, where they can present their projects and also practice how to communicate their research to the news media and the public.

By: Cajsa Malmström

More information

Read more and register on the conference website (in English):

More facts about the conference

The 7th International Crisis Communication Conference will be held in Gothenburg 5-7 October 2023.

We encourage participants to suggest papers and panel proposals that address the citizen perspectives of crisis communication in urban settings, but of course even contributions addressing other themes are welcome too. We encourage new approaches to theory, methodology, education and training, practice, as well as the intersection of technology in the context of risk and crisis.

We invite both researchers and practitioners and are looking for cross-disciplinary approaches from communication, journalism, business, marketing, health, law, politics, policing, cross-cultural research, education, and training.

The conference will be hosted by the Department of Journalism, Media and Communication (JMG) at the University of Gothenburg.

We will provide additional details and guidelines over the next several months.

For more information see