President's Welcome

Peng Hwa Ang
ICA President Peng Hwa Ang

Welcome to the International Communication Association!

We are the premier academic association for scholars engaged in the study, teaching, and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication internationally.

Our membership is organized into 31Divisions and Interest Groups, each representing a subfield in the study of communication. We view the breadth of divisions and interest groups as a strength of the Association, showcasing our wide-ranging discipline in which different aspects of communication are linked not only by common processes and structures, but also by diverse theories, methods, and methodologies. No matter your area of academic focus, you will be able to find a home with us.

Our flagship event is the annual conference. In the past six years, average registrations have exceeded 2,500 and indications are that attendance is poised to grow, along with continuing improvement in the quality of papers and panels accepted. Our next conference is planned for San Diego in May 2017.

ICA began more than 60 years ago as a small organization of U.S.-based researchers. Today, we number more than 4,300 members in some 80-odd countries. Since 2003, we have been officially associated with the United Nations as a non-governmental organization (NGO); this means that the Association has special consultative standing with the UN and is invited, on occasion, for special high-level meetings there.

In concert with that international outlook, seeking the best from the best, we are also recognized for the quality of our academic journals. We publish five peer-reviewed journals: Communication, Culture, and Critique (CCC), Communication Theory (CT), Human Communication Research (HCR), Journal of Communication (JoC), and the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication (JCMC). All are highly regarded, with JoC and JCMC in particular often placing at the very top in rankings of communication journals. As an ICA member, you receive free access to our journals. We also sponsor publication of Annals of the International Communication Association (which used to be called the Communication Yearbook) and collaborate with academic publishers for the ICA Annual Conference ThemeBook series.

What are the benefits of membership? We are a self-organizing association, which means that members drive the Association. So while attending conferences, getting papers accepted and access to quality journals are pluses, members find they also benefit from contributing to the Association in many ways:

You may serve as an officer of one of the 31 divisions and interest groups (each D/IG chair has a seat on the Board of Directors governing the association as a whole). You may also serve in one of the ICA's committees and task forces. Such work, which can be equal parts challenging and rewarding, both necessitates and comes with the benefit of interaction with scholars from all around the world. It helps us grow intellectually and academically. Many of my fellow members have mentioned that friendships and collaborations formed and nurtured at ICA have become some of the most rewarding relationships of their lives.

We live in such interesting times. The Internet, social media, online games, video streaming, and now, Pokemon Go, are changing the way we live, work, and play. As physical and ideological borders form and break down around the globe at a dizzying pace, ICA offers a stable academic home. As a member of the ICA, you have the opportunity to contribute to the better understanding of the changes that affect our lives, no matter which of the 80-plus ICA member countries you call home.

You have taken that first, most important step: joining the ICA. I wish you success as you grow along with the Association. Thanks for being here.

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