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PANELS

PANEL 1

The idea of public sphere

After the books of Hannah Arendt (The Human Condition, 1958) and Jurgen Habermas (Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, 1962) the concept of public sphere has undergone enormous changes and critical evaluations. This panel seeks to answer some recurring issues in this debate. Among these are the following:

a) How can we assess today, in the normative and heuristic plans, the strength of the ideal that aims to establish a rational and egalitarian public sphere, supported in an enlightened public opinion?

b) What is the impact of media in the conceptualization of this public sphere?

c) Should we consider only the existence of a single national public sphere or the existence of multiple public spheres?

PANEL 2

Journalism and the public sphere

Since John Dewey the reflection on the political role of journalism is intimately tied to the concept of publicity. However, the development of the media produced a critical discourse on the relationship between journalism and civic life. This critical discourse led to the emergence of reform movements of journalism that have the concepts of publicity and citizenship at the heart of its thinking. Public journalism, civic journalism, citizen journalism and blogs legitimize itself through a discourse of revitalization of civic life and the pursuit of closeness to the citizen.

PANEL 3

ICTs and the public sphere

The chances for interactivity and easy access to new media gave to Internet an aura of strong democratic potential. The debate still goes on and it’s important to discuss the limits and possibilities of new technologies to invigorate the public sphere.

PANEL 4

Rhetoric and public sphere

The public sphere has always been a discursive space of argumentative exchange. There is a rhetorical dimension in the public sphere that is inherent in civic practices.

PANEL 5

The European public sphere: new challenges

The so-called democratic deficit of the European Union, heralded by some authors, became a topic of major relevance. At a time when the decision-making power is transferred from national bodies elected directly by citizens to transnational instances, the subject knows a more urgent dimension. The existence of an European public sphere has become a central issue of political debate and inevitably has an important impact on communication studies.

PANEL 6

Identities and the public sphere

The desire for recognition by social identities implies raising it to public visibility and discussion. However, as a cosmopolitan social domain that points to the existence of principles of freedom, not coercion, and reciprocity, the public sphere can become problematic in its relationship with the various social identities. This may happen because public sphere doesn’t admit the existence of identities not subscribing to the ideals of rational debate, and because its post-conventional dynamic may contribute to the erosion of traditions. Thus, the public sphere can disqualify private problems or communitarian options shared by some social groups.

Roundtable

The national public spheres: Portugal, Brazil and Spain

Public spheres reflect the national realities, the social and historical specificities, the political and economic transformations and the communication models. It is worth discussing this concept around three national spaces linked by history, geography and culture.

INVITED SPEAKERS

  • Président du Centre de Philosophie du Droit, Université libre de Bruxelles.
  • Hans-Jörg Trenz

  • Professor at the Centre for Modern European Studies.
  • University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • Paul Statham

  • Centre for European Political Communication.
  • Bristol University, UK.
  • Rousiley Maia

  • Studies in Media and Public Sphere Group.
  • Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • João Carlos Correia

  • Professor of Communication in University of Beira Interior.
  • Chair of the Communication and Politics Group of Portuguese Society of Communication (SOPCOM).
  • Leading researcher of Project Citizen's Agenda.
  • Researcher of LABCOM; Coordinator of the research Group “Identities and Citizenship”.
  • Joaquim Mateus Paulo Serra

  • President of the Faculty of Arts and Letters of University of Beira Interior.
  • Professor of Communication.
  • Researcher of Labcom.
  • Member of Information and Persuation on Web Group.
  • Theodore Glasser

  • Professor of Communication.
  • University of Stanford, USA.
  • Federal University of Bahia, Brazil.
  • Iñaki Garcia Blanco

  • Vice-Chair ECREA Communication and Democracy section.
  • Cardiff University, Wales, UK.
  • Raphaël Kies

  • Researcher in Political Science at the University of Luxembourg.
  • Co-founder of the E-democracy Center (Switzerland).
  • Member of the Réseau de Démocratie ELectronique (France) and of the ECPR standing group on Internet and Politics.
  • co-responsible for the national and European electoral studies, and for the introduction of innovative methods of political participation such as the voting advice application smartvote.lu and the European Citizens Consultation.
  • Has published several articles and reports on e-democracy, local democracy, and deliberative democracy.
  • Tito Cardoso e Cunha

  • Professor of Communication at University of Beira Interior.
  • Coordinator of the Research Group “Design, Cinema e Mutimedia”.
  • Chair of the Rethoric Working Group of Portuguese Society of Communication (SOPCOM).
  • António Fidalgo

  • Professor of Communication at University of Beira Interior.
  • Chair of LABCOM.
  • Cláudia Álvares

  • Professor at School of Communication, Arts and Information Technologies, Lusophone University of Humanities and Technologies.
  • Vice-chair of ECREA Gender and Communication Section.

Scientific Comission

  • António Fidalgo

    University of Beira Interior
  • Paulo Serra

    University of Beira Interior
  • Anabela Gradim

    University of Beira Interior
  • Gil Ferreira

    Education School of Coimbra
  • Eduardo Camilo

    University of Beira Interior
  • Gisela Gonçalves

    University of Beira Interior
  • João Carlos Correia

    University of Beira Interior
  • Francisco Seoane Pérez

    University of Leeds
  • João Canavilhas

    University of Beira Interior
  • José Ricardo Pinto Carvalheiro

    University of Beira Interior
  • Marcos Palácios

    Federal University of Bahia / University of Beira Interior
  • Tito Cardoso e Cunha

    University of Beira Interior
  • Rousiley Maia

    Federal University of Minas Gerais
  • Wilson Gomes

    University of Beira Interior
  • José Luís Dader Garcia

    Complutense University of Madrid, Spain
  • João Pissarra Esteves

    New University of Lisbon

Executive Comission

  • Gil Ferreira

    Education School of Coimbra
  • João Carlos Correia

    University of Beira Interior
  • João Canavilhas

    University of Beira Interior
  • José Ricardo Pinto Carvalheiro

    University of Beira Interior
  • Susana Sampaio Dias

    Cardiff University
  • Susana Borges

    Education School of Coimbra
  • Marco Oliveira

    LABCOM / University of Beira Interior
  • João Nuno Sardinha

    LABCOM / University of Beira Interior
  • João Carlos Sousa

    LABCOM/ University of Beira Interior
  • Ricardo Morais

    LABCOM / University of Beira Interior
  • Eduardo Alves

    LABCOM / University of Beira Interior
  • Catarina Rodrigues

    LABCOM / University of Beira Interior
  • Victor Amaral

    LABCOM / University of Beira Interior / Polytechnic Institute of Guarda