CALL FOR ABSTRACTS: Risk and Crisis Communication in Europe: A Definitive Guide to Pan-European Scholarship and Practice

On behalf of the editors – Audra Diers-Lawson, Andreas Schwarz, Silvia Ravazzani, and Florian Meissner – and as part of the Routledge Studies in European Communication Research and Education Series we are inviting abstract submissions for a risk and crisis communication book proposal titled: Risk and Crisis Communication in Europe: A Definitive Guide to Pan-European Scholarship and Practice. Our core objective with this text is to develop a student and practitioner-focused text that represents the breadth of research in risk and crisis communication in Europe. 

Deadline for the submission of abstracts is 6 September, 2020 with accepted abstracts notified by 17 September. If the book is approved by the ECREA Series editors, contributors would have approximately one year to produce their chapter and supplemental materials. 

We welcome submissions from academics and practitioners. Where necessary, preference will be given to ECREA members as it is a condition of the series that at least 50% of contributors are ECREA members. If you are not a member of ECREA, you can join anytime. 

Submission Information

To submit — send an email to audra.lawson@leedsbeckett.ac.uk with the following information:

  1. Brief author bio for each author (name, affiliation, degree, and 1 or 2 sentence summary of research agenda)
  2. ECREA Member (yes/no)
  3. Section of the book (see below for the list)
  4. Theme of your submission (see below for the list)
  5. Willingness to create a 5-minute supplementary video to support the book (yes/no)
  6. If you are proposing a case study, willingness to work with the editors to create a 15 or 30 minute exercise based on the key themes emerging in the case study (we will put the exercises together, but we will ask you for key recommendations and suggestions to create an applied exercise based on the key lessons learned from the case study) (yes/no)
  7. Include a 300-500 word (maximum) structured abstract for the submission that addresses:
    1. Central aims and objectives of the chapter
    2. Focal Country(ies) for the chapter
    3. Brief summary of key content in the chapter
    4. Brief summary of key transferrable knowledge/skills after reading the chapter (learning outcomes)

Details About the Book Proposal

Context and Importance

The field of risk and crisis communication emerged, as a cohesive and distinctive area of study and practice, in the mid 1990’s and over the early 2000’s has established itself as a growing field (Diers-Lawson, 2020). Europe has emerged as a critical hub for the global development of theory and practice in risk and crisis communication. For example, ECREA is the first international communication association to have a full crisis communication section; it hosts one of the two main risk and crisis communication conferences in the world; the section has membership and consistent attendance at ECREA-sponsored events from Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas.

Despite the influence, the only text to meaningfully and explicitly addressed crisis communication in Europe was the Handbook of International Crisis Communication Research (2016) and that was within the context of exploring risk and crisis communication around the world. Since that text was published, not only has the field of risk and crisis communication continued to develop but Europe has experienced the amplification of the refugee crisis, Brexit, increasing terrorist attacks, a heightened awareness of the climate crisis, and of course the COVID-19 pandemic. Each of these has not only contributed to scholarship and practice but have also changed the contexts for considering risk and crisis communication in Europe.

Moreover, one of the ongoing challenges is the translation of academic work to practitioner and student audiences to ensure the innovative research being conducted is accessible by the audiences that most need it. Therefore, our objectives with this book are:

  1. Develop pan-European perspectives on risk and crisis communication with relevance across and beyond Europe.
  2. Provide accessible and engaging material to translate traditional academic theory and research to non-academic audiences.
  3. Use the accessible material to create practical impact for the theoretical, methodological, and practical contributions of European-based scholars and practitioners in risk and crisis communication.
  4. Explore the multi-disciplinary connections in risk and crisis communication.
  5. Provide case studies from around Europe to support teaching and practice.

Intended Audience

The intended audience for the book will focus on:

  • Practitioners in risk and crisis communication
  • Students – both advanced undergraduates and post-graduates
  • Lecturers and scholars

Book Layout

Our tentative structure will include three sections; however, a more detailed structure might emerge based on the topics and categories of abstracts that we receive:

  1. Risk Communication in the pan-European context
  2. Crisis Communication in the pan-European context
  3. European-Based Case Studies

Themes in the book will address risk and crisis in relation to:

  • Business/Management/Leadership/Strategy
  • Culture
  • Employees
  • Health
  • Measurement
  • Media (including journalism and social media)
  • Politics
  • Social Responsibility
  • Technology and algorithms
  • Wicked Problems (e.g., climate change, natural disasters, refugee crises/migration, pandemics)

Unique Features

To support the objectives, there are several unique features to the book to improve its accessibility and translation of the material to non-academic audiences.

  1. Chapters will be written with the target audiences in mind. Therefore, they will:
    1. Be concise (i.e., 3000-4000 words maximum for sections 1 and 2, 1000-1500 words maximum for section 3).
    2. Use a uniform template for both regular chapters and the case studies to give the book consistency and clarity
    3. Actively incorporate visuals like figures, diagrams, and tables to improve clarity of concepts and models introduced. The copyright to all visuals will be owned by the authors.
  2. Each chapter and case study will have an approximately 5 minute supplementary video presentation from the author(s), which will be hosted on the section’s website (ecreacrisis.com).
  3. The editors will work with case study contributors to create 15 or 30 minute mini-simulations which will complement the material presented in the case studies to allow practitioners or students to experience a situation similar to the case study and apply lessons learned in the case study.

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