Expanding our knowledge at the cutting edge of research in advertising, entertainment & media studies, journalism, public relations.

Research Foci

The Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at UGA is on the cutting edge of research in many areas. Listed below are research foci of particular interest and prominence for the College. Grady College has particular expertise in research in the areas of Health and Risk Communication, Political and Policy Communication, Narrative Storytelling, Critical Studies, and Sports Communication. The College also has experts focusing on many of the other fundamentals of advertising, journalism, public relations, social and new media, and entertainment media. Read on for more information on what's happening in each area.

Health and Risk Communication

The ability to effectively and efficiently communicate about health and risk-related issues is becoming increasingly important. Hospitals, government agencies, health departments, news media organizations and public relations and other communication practitioners need to know how best to reach diverse audiences with timely and relevant messages, and the new Grady Center for Health and Risk Communication (CHRC) is an important interdisciplinary center of expertise. Grady scholars and the new Center, serves as a resource for training, access to experts, and research for strengthening health and risk communication efforts. This expertise includes health and risk communication message development and messaging, working with the news media, designing and evaluating health or risk communication efforts, information delivery and risk communication preparedness. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.

Political and Policy Communication

The political arena is constantly changing. Grady has published groundbreaking research in the area of political and policy communication. Some of the topics being researched at Grady include the role of social media in news, political and international communication, and the effects of political advertising on voting decisions. Other topics of particular interest to Grady researchers include how the personalization of messages afforded by Facebook, Twitter and blogs have impacted organizations and political messages. Grady researchers have published numerous books and peer-reviewed articles on the subject of politics and policy communication, and faculty members have been involved in numerous programs to help foster democracy and stability in other countries. Grady is also home to the James M. Cox Jr. Center for International Mass Communication Training and Research, which focuses on global issues affecting the journalism and communication industry. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.

Narrative Storytelling and Critical Studies

Grady knows the importance of telling a good story. Grady is home to some of the leading researchers in the field of storytelling, including author Valerie Boyd, and experts in the field of script writing Dr. Nate Kohn and Jennifer Smith. Boyd is interested in narrative nonfiction writing in various venues, including newspapers, magazines and books, and has a particular interest in race and gender issues in media. Dr. Kohn is an expert on screenwriting and producing, and has recently published an article on producing for and working with emerging filmmakers. Professor Smith focuses on short narrative and feature writing, as well as directing and producing.

Critical scholars at Grady are constantly monitoring and evaluating the media and its role in culture. Areas of particular focus are research on the history, theory and practice of alternative media and democratic communication. Critical-cultural research at Grady includes immersive studies of Latin American television series, research in Diasporic media cultures and the use of comedy in narrative political satire. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.

Sports Communication

With the increasing importance of sports in our culture, an area of growing interest is sports journalism and sports communication. Grady is currently bringing together industry experts to examine issues related to sports media and its role in society. Areas of interest include the role of social media as it relates to sports, sports writing in the digital age, and concepts of "fandom." For research purposes, students have access to high-profile sports franchises such as the Atlanta Falcons and the Atlanta Braves as well as the collegiate SEC powerhouses. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.

Departmental Research

Each of the departments within Grady also leads the way in research in their fields.


Advertising permeates our culture. Advertising scholars at Grady specialize in health communication, advertising management, brand management and the use of sex in advertising, as well as the role of digital media in advertising. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.

Entertainment & Media Studies

Researchers in the Department of Entertainment & Media Studies are expanding our knowledge at the cutting edge of digital media. The Department's scholars are delving into the unanswered questions of communication and social networks;interactive media, video games and culture, and children and media; health and crisis communication; media law, policy, economics and management in a changing digital environment; media and culture; and the role of media in political and economic development. For details on the ongoing research being conducted by the Department's research teams, please click here.


Above Grady's door is the slogan, "Democracy's Next Generation." Key to this mission is the role of journalism. Grady's journalism scholars study public opinion, journalism history, media law, media management and international journalism. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.

Public Relations

Grady boasts some of the top scholars in the field of public relations research. These scholars' work ranges from crisis communication, to social media, from history, to theory building, from leadership to activism. A dedication to linking scholarship to practice is of particular importance to Grady scholars. To view the specific Grady scholars doing work in this area click here.