President's Welcome

Stohl

Welcome to the International Communication Association!

ICA is an academic association for scholars interested in the study, teaching and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication. It began more than 60 years ago as a small organization of U.S. researchers and now is truly international with more than 4500 members in over 80 countries. Since 2003, ICA has been officially associated with the United Nations as a non-governmental organization (NGO).

The centrality and broad impact of communication technologies offer an exciting and critically important moment for communication scholars. With the digital revolution far from over and new inventions repeatedly challenging assumptions that were themselves formed only yesterday, communication studies emerge more than ever before as central to the mission and focus of the academic universe. Communication studies can rightfully claim a central role not only in the basic general education of an informed citizenry, but also in understanding and clarifying many of the central challenges of our rapidly changing world. Communication scholars have the opportunity to draw upon a wealth of disparate theoretical and empirical strands in order to clarify questions of real societal import, illuminate complex realities, and help explore solutions to pressing problems as well as long-standing intellectual mysteries. By asking relevant questions and conducting academically sound research to find their solutions, ICA members are uniquely positioned to provide answers that enhance our understanding of the environment in which we live.

ICA's expertise is available to everyone, and its diverse structure ensures the association's relevance to a multitude of interest areas. ICA includes 26 Divisions and Interest Groups, each representing a subfield in the study of communication. Despite special interests, we view our field as a wide-ranging discipline in which different aspects of communication are linked by common processes and structures, but also by diverse theories, methods, and methodologies. One of the most pressing goals for my year as president of this association is to bring together the various academic perspectives and to support their dialogue and exchange with each other when tackling common problems.

ICA communicates within the association and with others interested in our field through various channels. The association publishes five major, peer-reviewed journals: Journal of Communication, Communication Theory, Human Communication Research, the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, and Communication, Culture, and Critique, to which members have free access. It also sponsors publication of Communication Yearbook and collaborates with academic publishers on resources for the discipline. To keep members informed about ongoing activities, ICA provides a monthly electronic newsletter. It holds its annual conference (the next scheduled for San Juan, Puerto Rico, US, in May 2015) at which hundreds of research papers will be presented and over 2,000 scholars from all over the world will participate. There we also recognize outstanding contributions to the field through awards and fellowship programs.

The members-only section of our website provides a searchable worldwide membership directory, full archives of ICA journals and the ICA Newsletter, as well as other information of particular interest to our members. ICA Executive Director Michael Haley and other members of the ICA staff will be happy to help you and answer your inquiries about the association. If you would like to contact me personally, you can e-mail me at vorderer@uni-mannheim.de.

Thank you for your interest in ICA.

Peter Vorderer, President
U of Mannheim, Germany

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn