A Word From Dr. David Weiss...

Departmental News

Posted: March 2, 2020


Since I just got scheduled to be on a panel discussion -- and am featured on the Facebook page for the event -- I figured this would be a good time to send a blurb (and a photo or two taken here).

I will be one of three people on this panel -- all of us are Americans, interestingly! -- talking about Czech and American advertising. I have no idea what I'm going to say yet. But feel free to include the link to the event in whatever you write or post. 

Bigger picture: for the Summer 2020 semester (which goes from mid-February to late May, and thus doesn't even approach actually being in summer), I am a visiting professor at Charles University. Specifically, I'm in the Department of Marketing Communication & Public Relations, which is one of three departments (the other two are Media Studies and Journalism) in the Institute of Communication & Journalism Studies, which is one "institute" in the Faculty of Social Sciences. Whew! So many layers. 

I'm teaching two classes -- Political Communication; Strategic Planning & Positioning -- both of which I teach or used to teach regularly in C&J and which I've adapted and updated to make more international, since about 1/4 of the students in each class are from places other than the Czech Republic or Slovakia. I have students from Myanmar, Turkey, Portugal, Germany, and even the US. The English-language writing and speaking skills of my students are impressive! 

While here, I will be researching various aspects of and changes to the Czech media/journalism systems, especially in light of increasing nationalism, (so called) populism, and authoritarianism in this part of the world. I'm especially interested in threats to journalists, press freedom, and freedom of speech in post-Communist countries. Since the premier of the Czech Republic is (like our own president) a billionaire businessman -- but also a media oligarch -- the situation here is quite interesting and complex, even if the Czech Republic's media system is still (for the moment) relatively free and independent, especially in comparison to neighboring or nearby countries such as Hungary and Poland. 

What else can I tell you?