Business firms, public institutions and non-profit organisations operate today in an increasingly complex environment marked by hyper-digitalisation, media fragmentation, ambiguous market and political conditions at global levels, and growing public scepticism. In such context, there is growing market demand for communication experts who can help organisations to (re)build trust, enhance reputation and, more in general, realise their strategic goals.
The MSc Strategic Communication offers a cross-disciplinary education with a distinctive focus on:
- How corporate leaders, governments, public institutions, NGOs and even celebrities make use of narrative and argument to build consensus and dialogue with stakeholders and to (re)construct their identity, reputation and trustworthiness, especially in crisis situations.
- The role of digital media, particularly social media, in enhancing strategic communication and informing strategic planning.
- The contexts and practices of strategic communication (e.g. financial communication and investor relations; political campaigns; crisis management; branding, policy change, takeover and mergers): how they are shaped through discourse and how discourse affects them.
The programme combines a range of conceptual knowledge and practical skills which are crucial for successfully managing a variety of strategic communication activities, such as defining and effectively sharing the mission, vision and values of an organisation, responding to a crisis, launching new products and services or supporting strategic initiatives like mergers, event promotions, and campaigns for political elections, health prevention or policy change.
Students will learn how to translate organisational goals into communication objectives, to analyse situations by identifying and segmenting the relevant stakeholder groups, as well as regulatory constraints and ethical issues; to design spoken and written messages that are at the same time sound, persuasive and compliant; to exploit the potential offered by established communication technologies and new digital media to effectively engage stakeholders.
Practical projects include a variety of activities like designing and delivering effective public speeches, building a digital media campaign and the writing of digital communications for live briefs.
In addition to the classroom modules, a dedicated module involving communication experts and leaders will give you the chance to familiarise yourself with relevant professional contexts. You will closely interact with specialists in the sector and learn more about current challenges in strategic communication practices. Through the final capstone project you will have the opportunity to develop an empirical or theoretical dissertation or to develop a research project in collaboration with an organisation.
Why Communication and Media?
Communication and Media is a close-knit community of dedicated, innovative teachers and researchers that extend a warm welcome to postgraduate taught and research students. You can benefit from a personalised approach which treats you as an individual and encourages you to become involved in the life of the department. Our approach enables a productive dialogue to be created between and amongst our postgraduate community and our staff, so that we are all engaged in the pursuit of excellent scholarship and research and, more broadly, making a contribution to the development of our field.
Key areas of research strength include: communication, politics and power; media theory; political and independent cinema; gender and identity in media; media, ethics and human rights; media and war; new media and digital communication; media discourse; global entertainment and media industries; media, space and place; media and heritage; visual culture and memory, anthropological approaches to the study of communication and media; sociolinguistics, communication and language; and media and cultural identity.
This broad range of research expertise underpins the two pathways we offer – ‘Media and Politics’ and ‘Digital Culture and Communication’. We also run regular research seminar series – the Liverpool Film Seminar, the Media and Politics Seminar Series, and The Keyword Conversations (Culture, Space, and Memory Research Group) – which postgraduate students are encouraged to participate in.
The department's actively contributing to the development of our field through research, key subject associations, conference organisation and speaking engagements, and editorial board membership of significant journals. Our activities include internationally recognised research, linking political science and communication studies primarily through crossover interests in public and digital communication within the British, European and International political and cultural contexts.
Immerse yourself in a city known as a political and creative force. What better place to immerse yourself in the subject than Liverpool, a city with a reputation as a political and creative force, with a thriving production sector and a unique cultural heritage? The Department has close links to cultural industries and venues in the city, some of which collaborate with us in offering assessed work placements as part of our programme of study.