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The Department's Research

The range of information on offer today is broader than ever before. Organisations and companies fight for attention and the media landscape has changed radically, with digital media becoming a part of everyday life, among other things. The importance of strategic communication has increased as a result of this development. It permeates our society – politically, economically and culturally.

What a company or a public authority communicates is crucial for the trust and credibility which the organisation achieves internally and with surrounding society. Communication processes affect the inner balance of power and relations between management and employees, but also the external relationships with clients, for example.

Research in strategic communication tackles the formal and informal communication initiatives which an organisation implements in order to achieve a particular goal. These can be anything from marketing communication and communication to reinforce relations with external groups, to how internal communication affects the organisation. The focus is on communication processes from the perspective of society, the organisation and the individual. At the Department of Strategic Communication (ISK) research focuses primarily on crisis communication, change communication, research into the profession of communications officers and image and branding research.

The aim of the research is to contribute new knowledge about organisations and society from a communication perspective. The research is to highlight, increase understanding of and critically review the communication processes which govern and shape organisations in our society.

Ever since rhetoric – "the art of speaking well" – developed during Antiquity, people have discussed how to succeed in communicating strategically. The research field of strategic communication was previously a specialisation within Media and Communication Studies, but it has been a separate main field of study at Lund University since 2007.

The holistic view of organisational communication is unique to research within strategic communication. Understanding organisational communication requires a comprehensive approach. It is not possible to draw a clear boundary between internal and external communication; they affect each other. Research therefore covers three areas: public relations, organisational communication and marketing communication.

ISK has more students, lecturers and researchers in this field than any other institution in Sweden. Sweden’s first professor of strategic communication is to be found at our department. We are also one of the largest units in the field within Europe.