The UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB, the former devoted to communication studies, initiated its activities in 1989. The Chair is attached to the Communication Institute (InCom-UAB) of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB), a university center for basic and applied research which is in charge of the Chair’s management. InCom, directed by Dr. Miquel de Moragas, specializes in research, training and other services in communication studies, as well as the knowledge dissemination to society in general.
The main goal of the UNESCO Chair in Communication Incom-UAB is to carry out academic and research activities on communication, dealing with the UNESCO ideas, values and initiatives in this area (cultural diversity, Information Society, communication and development, democratic participation, culture of peace, etc.). The core of these activities is developed through the figure of specialist scholars (the UNESCO Professors) which give PhD seminars within the framework of the departmental programs of the Faculty of Communication Sciences of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB). The UNESCO Professors also collaborate in complementary activities, especially conferences and colloquiums on their areas of specialization and about the state of the communication research in their country or current geographical area.
UNESCO Chair coordination and financing
The UNESCO Chair in Communication Incom-UAB is directed by Dr. María Dolores Montego Sánchez and managed by the InCom’s team, through its director, Dr. Miquel de Moragas and the researcher Lic. Núria Reguero.
The UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB is part of the international network Orbicom
since its creation in 1994.
Activities Planned for 2009
1. UNESCO Chairholder 2009. Professor Juan Carlos Miguel de Bustos (University of the Basque Country)
Juan Carlos Miguel de Bustos is a Professor at the University of the Basque Country.
His areas of research include cultural industry economics, communication for development and Internet cultural industries. His main publication is Comunicación sostenible y desarrollo humano en la sociedad de la información (2007).
Professor Miguel de Bustos will be visiting the UAB in spring 2009 (April) and planned activities include the organisation of a seminar and a presentation (over one week) on cultural industries.
2. UNESCO Chairholder 2009. Professor Ramón Zallo (University of the Basque Country)
Ramón Zallo is a Professor at the University of the Basque Country and Cultural Advisor to the Basque Government. Worthy of note are his contributions to communication research relating to economics, business, and communication and cultural polices. His publications Economía de la comunicación y la cultura (1987), Industrias y políticas culturales en España y País Vasco (1995) and El país de los vascos (2001) are particularly important in communication research.
Professor Zallo will be visiting the UAB in November 2009 and planned activities include presentations and seminars (aimed particularly at doctoral students) on topics in his specialist field. If possible, some of these activities will be held at cultural institutions in Barcelona, like the CCCB (Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona).
One presentation and three doctoral seminars will be held (over one month) on the analysis of communication policies in Europe and Spain from a cultural diversity viewpoint.
3. UNESCO Chairholder 2009. To be confirmed
An international expert will be invited to take up the Chair as a visiting Professor to give a seminar and a presentation on communication and development in the second semester of 2009.
4. Communication Monitoring Studies at UNESCO
The production of a report on each of UNESCO’s priority communication topics is planned. The topics to be covered are:
– Cultural Diversity
– Information Society
– Communication and Development
– Democratic Participation
5. Participation in International Conferences and Forums to Disseminate the Research Undertaken
The UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB intends to take part in the 2009 Conference of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) being held in Mexico in July. The Chair’s links with ORBICOM, the International Network of UNESCO Chairs in Communication, will also be boosted through more active online involvement in annual general assemblies.
2. Organisation Chart and Updated Data for the UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB
In 2009, the UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB will celebrate its 20th anniversary. For that reason, 2008 was considered to be a good year to initiate a fresh approach that will become consolidated in 2009. The reorganisation of the Chair will apply to its activities on the one hand, and to its organisation chart and management on the other.
New Organisation Chart – Management and Coordination
The new organisation chart for the Chair’s management and coordination intends to strengthen the structure of the academic management and coordination team. The most significant change is that Professor of Communication Sciences María Dolores Montero will be taking over from Manuel Parés i Maicas, the person who has managed the Chair since its creation in 1989. From 2009, Manuel Parés i Maicas will become an Honorary Director on the Chair’s Board of Directors. The profile of the Chair’s new Director, who is currently a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Journalism and Communication Sciences and a former Dean of the Faculty of Communication Sciences at the UAB, brings academic and intellectual diligence, managerial competence and experience in institutional relations to the position, and is therefore ideally suited to this new period in the life of the institution.
The reorganisation was deliberated and developed throughout 2008 to ensure that it would be ready to design and execute the 2009 Activity Plan.
Management and Coordination Team
After Director of the Chair Manuel Parés i Maicas’s retirement, the Chair’s
Management and Coordination Team will be as follows:
María Dolores Montero
Board of Directors
Manuel Parés i Maicas, Honorary Director
Miquel de Moragas, InCom-UAB Director
María Dolores Montero, Chair Director
Mercè Díez, InCom-UAB Investigator
Technical and Administrative Team
The Chair will continue to be coordinated and administered by InCom-UAB’s technical and administrative service:
Miquel Gómez Benosa
Diffusion and Website Information Management:
Ramon G. Sedó
Secretary and Institutional Relations:
3. Institutional Relations and Additional Resources
The Chair has received funding from the Government of Catalonia’s Directorate
General for Research since 1990.
Institutional Relations and Diffusion
The activities of the UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB are disseminated mainly through the web pages (www.portalcomunicacion.com/catUNESCO) hosted on the InCom-UAB Communication Portal (www.portalcomunicacion.com), an academic portal specialising in communication sciences. In addition to offering up-to-date information about activities, there are a number of related resources that users can access.
In 2008, the following institutions also collaborated with the Chair on the dissemination of its activities in a number of documents, including:
• “CIDOB Documents / Intercultural Dynamics” Collection, published by the CIDOB Foundation, Center for International Relations and Development Studies. Available in print and digital format at:
• Col·lecció Lexikon, Presidential Department, Government of Catalonia. Issue 2 of this collection, published in Catalan and English, contains papers from the Press Subsidies in Europe symposium organised by InCom-UAB and held in June 2006. A second collaboration was established in 2008, in which the Chair participated directly, for the 2nd European Communication Conference ECREA-Barcelona 2008.
4. Activities undertaken in 2008
4.1 UNESCO Chairholder 2008. Professor Daniel C. Hallin (University of San Diego, California)
The UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB invited Daniel C. Hallin to become one of the Chairholders for 2008. A Professor and Director of the Department of Communication at the University of San Diego, California, he specialises in analysing the relationship between politics and the media.
Taking advantage of the publication in Spanish of the book Comparing Media Systems:
Three Models of Media and Politics (2004), which he co-authored with Paulo Mancini (University of Perugia), Professor Hallin undertook the following activities:
• Presentation: “Comparing Media Systems: Three Models of Media and Politics” (28 January, Institut d’Estudis Catalans (Catalan Studies Institute or IEC). The activity was undertaken in collaboration with the Societat Catalana de Comunicació (Catalan Communication Society), a subsidiary of the IEC.
• Doctoral seminar: “Keys to Understanding Changes in Western Media Systems” (29
January, Faculty of Communication Sciences, UAB).
4.2 UNESCO Chairholder 2008. Professor Jesús Martín Barbero (Javeriana University, Bogotá)
Dr Jesús Martín Barbero is currently a Senior Lecturer at the Javeriana University in Bogotá, Colombia, and a Member of the National Council for Social Sciences (COLCIENCIAS) and the National Council for Culture, Colombia. Dr Martín Barbero has had close links with the UNESCO Chair in Communication InCom-UAB since the very beginning (he was invited to become the Chairholder in the 1992/93 academic year and gave the presentation “Communication Research and the Pitfalls of Globalisation” in 2003). During his visit in May, he undertook the following activities:
• Doctoral seminar: “Keys to Research into Culture and Communication Policies” (8 May, CIDOB Foundation).
• Presentation: “Communication Policies and Culture” (9 May, Faculty of Communication Sciences, UAB). The activity was undertaken in collaboration with the CIDOB Foundation.
• Interviews with the organisers of the 2nd European Communication Conference ECREA (European Communication Research and Education Association), held in Barcelona in November 2008.
• Working meeting with the Catalan Minister for Culture, Dr Joan Manuel Treserres,
and the President of the Catalan Audiovisual Council, Dr Josep Maria Carbonell, as well as other experts and leading members of the Government of Catalonia, to discuss cultural policy.
4.3 UNESCO Chairholder 2008. Dr Peter Humphreys (University of Manchester)
Peter Humphreys is an internationally renowned investigator in his specialist field, which principally focuses on comparative studies on telecommunications and audiovisual media policies, and the political economy of communication industries.
During his visit, he undertook the following activities:
• Presentation: “The European Union and Audiovisual Regulation: A Force for De-
regulation or Re-regulation?” (3 June, Faculty of Communication Sciences, UAB).
• Doctoral seminar, organised as a debate session to discuss issues arising from the
presentation held the day before (4 June, CIDOB Foundation).
• Interviews with the people responsible for the opening and closing sessions of the 2nd
European Communication Conference ECREA, held in Barcelona in November 2008.
4.4 The Chair’s Participation in the 2nd European Communication Conference
ECREA-Barcelona 2008 on “Communication and Cultural Policies in Europe”
The Chair took part in the 2nd European Communication Conference ECREA, held in
Barcelona from 25 to 28 November 2008. The core theme of this academic encounter,
which brought over 1,000 delegates together, was communication policies and culture
In conjunction with the InCom-UAB Communication Policies Observatory, the most relevant task of the Chair in the framework of the Conference was to encourage thought on communication policies and culture, involving international experts on such issues. This gave rise to the publication of the book Communication and Cultural Policies in Europe (Fernández Alonso, I. & de Moragas i Spà, M. (editors), 2008), which was handed out to conference delegates. The publication’s editors are the
InCom-UAB Director, Miquel de Moragas and the Coordinator of the InCom-UAB Communication Policies Observatory, Isabel Fernández.
In addition, the Chair collaborated in the Conference’s closing session, by planning and designing the session, which focused on “Cultural Expression and Universal Symbols. The Experience of Catalonia”. The ‘cultural expressions’ concept referred to the symbolic systems and languages that give rise to cultural creation. The concept of ‘universal symbols’ referred to meanings shared and interpreted by various cultural media.
Maria Dolores Montero
Universidad Autònoma de Barcelona