Call for abstracts


The educational environment has undergone deep transformations in the last decades: specifically offering undergraduate and graduate courses in the communication area are facing new and quickly evolving challenges.

On the one hand, the training of future professionals in the field of communication and journalism has been directly impacted by the technological changes introduced by cyberspace and the successive developments of the Network: web 2.0 or social web, web 3.0 or semantic web and web 4.0 or the internet of things.

On the other, Twentieth-century teaching methods and 21st-century technology represent a generation gap like no other. Gen Zers are “digital natives”: our students grew up not only with computers and internet access, but also with smartphones, social media, and mobile devices, and thus are not interested in traditional passive learning.

The role of communication and journalism education, therefore, is not only to provide future journalist or communicators with new technological skills (Ekdale, et. al. 2015), but mainly to prepare them to adapt to a fast-moving world where things can change almost month by month as the interface between humans and the digital world becomes ever closer (Frost 2018). Communication, in other words, can be considered a “new knowledge profession” (Donsbach 2014).

Already thirty years ago, Dennis (1988) called the debate between profession and education ‘‘a dialogue of the deaf’’: nowadays, the rise of the audience as producer of news, i.e. the emergence of citizen (Campbell 2015) and participatory journalism, challenges professional journalists and communicators to rethink their professional identities and understandings of their function in society (Lewis 2012; Robinson 2010; Wahl-Jorgensen 2015). In 2017, the Nieman Lab and the Reuters Institute Prediction Report highlighted that, among the main challenges that journalism and communication face, mobile technologies, augmented reality, artificial intelligence and Big Data, are the most important (Nieman Lab 2017; Reuters 2017).

In Barcelona, at the sixth annual conference of the ECREA ‘Journalism & Communication Education TWG’, we want to take a closer look at the multi-faceted relationships between education, technology and digital native future media professionals. We invite you to submit academic research and project based experiences and various approaches (theoretical, methodological or empirical in nature) that can touch upon, but are by no means restricted to, the following thematic areas:


  1. The evolution of new emerging professional profiles: multimedia journalism,
  2. Data journalist, community manager, SEO, branded content, etc.
  3. The application of AI in journalism.
  4. Educational multiplatform innovation: change in theory and practice.
  5. Ethical and deontological education for journalism in the post-truth era.
  6. Digital communication and advertising.
  7. New business models.
  8. Fake news: fact checking models.

Please note that we invite contributions in various formats, e.g. workshops, panels and conference presentations.




Conference presentations involve research results and/or theoretical work relevant to the conference theme. Please submit an abstract (max. 500 words, not including references), outlining the state of the study or research project, as well as the research question(s) or hypotheses, findings and conclusion(s). We also encourage submitting work in progress, e.g. new theoretical or methodological ideas you want to discuss with peers at the conference.


Panels consist of various presentations addressing a common topic from different perspectives. Panels are scheduled for one hour, including discussions. Panel proposals should include a description of the topic and an overall panel goal, addressing the relevance of the topic to the conference theme (400 words). The proposal should also suggest a chair to serve as a moderator and should include a short abstract of each of the presentations (max. 200 words each).



Workshops sessions are practice-oriented. Proposals should include a workshop description (max. 500 words) with a clearly defined workshop topic and goal, and several questions or assignments for discussion as well as an indication of the length of the session.

The conference will take place  Thursday 14th May and Friday 15th May, 2020

Deadline for submissions: Friday, 28th February, 2020

Submit abstracts as anonymized word- or pdf-documents to
michael.harnischmacher@uni-passau.de  

Please include your author information (name, institution, contact) in the accompanying e-mail. Accepted presenters will be informed by 16 March 2020.

Registration fee: 100 eur

The conference is organized by the local organizing committee at the Department of Journalism and Communication Sciences of UAB and the ECREA Journalism & Communication Education TWG.
Management team:

Dr. Santiago Tejedor (Santiago.Tejedor@uab.cat); Dra. Cristina Pulido (Cristina.Pulido@uab.cat); Ricardo Carniel  (ricardo.carniel@uab.cat(Head of committee) / University Autonoma of Barcelona (UAB) / Spain  

Dr. Michael Harnischmacher (Chair TWG) / University of Passau / Passau, Germany / (michael.harnischmacher@uni-passau.de)

Dr. Harmen Groenhart (Vice chair TWG) / Fontys University of Applied Sciences / Tilburg, The Netherlands (h.groenhart@fontys.nl)

Dra. Pilar Sánchez-García (Vice chair TWG) / University of Valladolid / Valladolid, Spain (pilar.sanchez@uva.es)