Call for candidates for the 2022 PhD positions at the Institute of Communication Studies and Journalism

Call for candidates for the 2022 PhD positions
at the Institute of Communication Studies and Journalism
Charles University

The Institute of Communication Studies and Journalism at the Faculty of Social Sciences of the Charles University in Prague calls for candidates for the following PhD projects (each supported by a scholarship), for its English-language PhD programme in Media and Communication Studies:

1/Intolerant belief systems and their intersection in the online communication
Western liberal democracies are becoming polarized along different lines and this polarization is specifically visible in the online discussions on various controversial topics. How does intolerance based on one characteristic (for example age) relate to other intolerant belief systems (for instance, those in relation to gender, ethnicity, race, sexuality etc.)? How does intolerant public online communication reflect societal norms and cultural prejudice prevalent in the analysed culture? What is the role of disinformation media in promoting intolerant belief systems?
The phenomenon can be studied on various research topic and case studies (ranging from politically exposed topics to debates among popular culture fans). Proposals are expected to be rooted in theories on online deliberation and its societal significance, intersectionality, post-truth society and other relevant theories. A project proposal focusing on this topic can be submitted in English or in Czech.
Proposed supervisor: Lenka Vochocová,

2/Discursive constructions of the environment
This PhD position consists out of research into the discursive construction of the environment, climate and/or human-nature relationships, driven by a discourse-theoretical (or other post-structuralist) framework, that allows for attention for the workings of contingency, hegemony, materiality and discursive struggle. The research can be located in variety of social fields, including media, the arts and/or museums.
Proposed supervisor: Nico Carpentier,

3/Inclusive media literacy education
The aim of this PhD position is to explore the field of media literacy education/media education from the perspective of vulnerable groups, such as: migrant and refugee youth, minorities, the elderly, or people with disabilities. The project should focus on critical inquiry by drawing on theories of intersectionality and feminism, and focus on how identities and lived media experiences are shaped through the mediation of intersecting axes of difference including nationality, race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, age, ability, migration status and socioeconomic class. Connected topics, such as the digital civic engagement/activism of youth, digital learning and curriculum development will also be considered.
The PhD project should be interdisciplinary in nature and build upon a participatory and/or creative/digital methodology. Proposals should be submitted in English.
Proposed supervisor: Annamária Neag,

4/Political management: campaigns organization, impacts on political parties, media relations
The project proposal should focus on at least one of the following topics : political management, changes within political parties, campaign organization, political communication, and political leadership. The whole political process has dramatically changed, and it keeps changing. The focus of the project should be analyzing what are the reasons for these changes. Adapting to the political environment and new issues or if the reason lies more in populistic approaches to politics. Theoretically, it should be rooted in the political marketing theory and political communication theory. The research project can either focus on a specific case study or use a more comparative approach. This PhD project can submitted in English or in Czech (in the latter case to the Czech-language PhD program in Media Studies).
Proposed supervisor: Anna Shavit,

5/The Influence of Persuasion and Communication in Food Decisions
In general, this project aims to explore what factors influence people's short and long-term food preferences. This objective can be fulfilled by focusing on the research of the supply (communication of restaurants, lifestyle magazines, or influencers) and the demand (psychological mechanisms of how we make food decisions and what contextual factors play a role). The project's methodology will correspond to the specific objective chosen, but experimental evidence is preferred. The detailed objective of the project must be agreed upon with the supervisor in advance.
Proposed supervisor: Petr Houdek,

6/The Art of Persuasion and Political Skills: An Intra-organisational Study
This dissertation project concerns research on persuasion within organizations (and groups of people in general). The research aims to identify the factors of organizational politics - at the individual and organizational level - that hinder the implementation of measures that can increase organizational effectiveness, ethicality, or sustainability (or other prosocial goals). Subsequently, the aim will be to design interventions that would enhance effective political skills. Laboratory and field experiments are preferred, but other approaches can also be proposed.
Proposed supervisor: Petr Houdek,

7/Photography and practices of othering
The position involves researching the specific means of othering in technical images with particular regard to photography. The methodology can be qualitative (although a combination of qualitative-quantitative methods is not excluded), analysing the depiction of the other as an enemy - in the war, for example, or as a cultural or ethnic enemy. The research can be aimed at gender stereotypes too. The researcher is expected to focus on the visual (thematic, aesthetic, formal) constructions of othering - e.g., what aesthetics and formal aspects are typically used to create the image of the other. The position can concentrate on historical imagery as well as the contemporary one or its historical development.
Proposed supervisor: Robert Silverio,

8/Photography composition as a narrative and cognitive construct
The topic analyses composition in photojournalistic photography or, more generally, in a photographic image, as a narrative element with a cognitive impact. Photography as a static, time-limited image tells stories taking place in an extended time. Research emphasizes how photographs create narrative functions and create awareness of the world through composition. It scrutinises the cognitive possibilities of this narration and potential cognitive biases. It can also concentrate on similarities and differences between technical and pre-technical images. The research analyses how specific themes can be framed. The project also enables the research of other formal aspects that participate in making the overall narratives.
A wide range of methodological approaches can be applied: synchronic or diachronic analysis, qualitative or qualitative-quantitative approach, poststructuralist analysis, a series of case studies, or a combination of these approaches.
Proposed supervisor: Robert Silverio,


Interested candidates should submit their applications, using the online application system, which will be open from 1st January to 30th April 2022. Interest in a particular PhD project should be mentioned in the motivation letter, together with a more developed proposal on the PhD project.

All relevant information, including the link to the online application system, can be found at here:
and here:

Please download the form for filling your dissertation project proposal here:

For general questions, please contact the Centre of PhD Studies, at For questions about particular projects, please contact the proposed supervisors.

The Open Doors Day for PhD Study in Media Studies will take place on February 28, 2022 (Monday) at 12:00 CET. It will be organised online. If you wish to participate, please email the Centre of PhD Studies, at, asap.