22922 - Public Communication

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

The main goal of the course is twofold. On the one hand, it is committed to present the essential concepts and the theoretical, legal, and socio-cultural frameworks within which communication patterns of public institutions and political actors have developed within Western Democracies and especially in Italy. On the other hand, the course will give the students the knowledge and the skills needed to both evaluate and implement communication campaigns by public actors, parties and other political actors, with a focus on digital technologies.

Course contents

The course is organized in two main modules:

1) Public institutions and communication

-Public actors and citizens: communication, institutions and democracy

- The evolution of the normative framework for institutional communication in Italy

- Governing communication: how different public institutions organize their communication effort

- Digital information ecologies and the disruption of traditional patters in public institutions' communication

- Case Histories from Italy and beyond

2) Political actors and communication

- The evolution of political communication and election campaigns

- Citizens' information, participation and election campaign

- Digital politics and social media

- Case Histories from Italy and beyond


R. Grandi, 2007 (Nuova Edizione Aggiornata) La comunicazione pubblica. Teorie, casi, profili normativi. Roma: Carocci. Chapters 5 and 8 excluded.

R.Grandi Vaccari, C,. 2013, Come si vincono le elezioni. Elementi di comunicazione politica. Roma: Carocci. Chapters 4, 5, 6, 18, 20 excluded.

A. Lovari, 2013, Networked citizens. Comunicazione pubblica e amministrazioni digitali. Milano: Franco Angeli


Students not attending classes are requested to add also:

L. Materassi, 2016, Comunicare le amministrazioni. Problemi e Prospettive. Roma: Carocci. Capp. 1 e 2.

L. Ceccarini, 2015, La cittadinanza online. Bologna: Il Mulino. Capp. 1 e 3.

Teaching methods

The course will be based mostly on taught classes, but it will also feature guest lectures by professionals in the field of political and public institutions' communication as well as seminar activities on voluntary bases.

Assessment methods

Written exam: multiple-choice and open ended questions.

Students not attending classes should write the professor at least 10 days before exam day.

Teaching tools

Powerpoint presentations, screening of campaigns and other multimedia materials, and practical exercises.

Office hours

See the website of Augusto Valeriani