Policy & Public Engagement

Researchers in this area examine policy and public engagement along two dimensions. The first is the communication challenge of designing and implementing policy. For example, how can communities engage their members in the generation of policies relevant to their needs and concerns? What role can communication researchers and practitioners play in this process? How does strategic communication influence public perception of and support for particular policies? How, and to what effect, are scientific, social, health, environmental, and technological issues framed in media and public discourse?

The second is the study of communication policy itself. For example, how is public communication governed by formal and informal rules across nations, platforms, and other technologies? On what assumptions about democracy, culture, and the social good are these policies based? How do publics respond to these policies, and how do new policies shape the broader information landscape?

Recent projects in this area focus on:

  • Assessing capacity for public engagement through citizen science
  • Establishing a framework for training science communicators
  • Involving people from low-SES backgrounds in research on implications of health and environmental policy
  • Understanding communication dimensions of science controversies
  • Testing theory-informed message strategies to promote evidence-based public policies
  • Working with educators to design and evaluate educational interventions to promote digital citizenship skills among youth
  • Understanding how privacy, algorithms, artificial intelligence influences democracy and the development of personal, social, political and economic engagement
  • Developing ethical guidelines and practices in higher and public education regarding privacy, algorithms and artificial intelligence
  • Understanding, testing, and auditing digital policy systems that govern online speech and behavior

Associated Faculty

Headshot of Dominic Balog-Way
Dominic Balog-Way

Postdoctoral Associate

Department of Communication

Dominic Balog-Way
  • db729 [at] cornell.edu
Headshot of Natalie Barazova
Natalie Bazarova

Associate Professor

Department of Communication

Natalie Bazarova
Headshot of Tarleton Gillespie
Tarleton Gillespie

Adjunct Associate Professor

Department of Communication

Tarleton Gillespie
  • tlg28 [at] cornell.edu
Algorithms
Copyright
Culture
Headshot of Amelia Greiner Safi
Amelia Greiner Safi

Senior Research Associate

Department of Communication

Amelia Greiner Safi
Headshot of Bruce Lewenstein
Bruce Lewenstein

Professor

Department of Communication

Bruce Lewenstein
Headshot of Drew Margolin
Drew Margolin

Associate Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies

Department of Communication

Drew Margolin
  • dm658 [at] cornell.edu
Headshot of J. Nathan Matias
J. Nathan Matias

Assistant Professor

Department of Communication

J. Nathan Matias
  • nathan.matias [at] cornell.edu
Headshot of Katherine McComas
Katherine McComas

Vice Provost for Engagement and Land-Grant Affairs

Office of the Provost

Professor

Department of Communication

Katherine McComas
A man
Jeff Niederdeppe

Professor and Director of Graduate Studies

Department of Communication

Jeff Niederdeppe
Headshot of Dawn Schrader
Dawn Schrader

Associate Professor

Department of Communication

Dawn Schrader
Head shot of Neil Lewis Jr.
Neil Lewis, Jr.

Assistant Professor

Department of Communication

Neil Lewis, Jr.
  • nlewisjr [at] cornell.edu
Headshot of Jonathon Schuldt
Jonathon Schuldt

Associate Professor

Department of Communication

Jonathon Schuldt