Universität Erfurt


Lifeworld Communication and the "Global Wo/Man" - New Perspectives on the Globalization Debate

General Information

Conference of the International and Intercultural Communication Section of the German Communication Association (DGPuK)

Date: October 5th – 6th, 2017 

Location: Erfurt | Germany | venue will be announced shortly

Hosted by: University of Erfurt | Department of Media and Communication Studies

Coordination: Dr. Anne Grüne

Conference Theme

Globalization debate has entered a new phase which some already label as “third wave”. The debate faces manifold challenges since the last decade has demonstrated ambivalences and paradoxes of global developments. These include increasing as well as decreasing social inclusion, and globalizing as well as re-localizing processes on all social levels. Different understandings of globalization as either growing interdependence/interaction or universalization/interconnection still complicate coherent theory building. A timely, constructive, and integrating theoretical basis beyond the binary positions of early “globalists” and “sceptics” is still pending. Revisionist voices, although not denying globalization at all, have already started to relativize the synchronicity and quality of global change in politics, economics, culture and communication on empirical grounds. 

Globalization appears to be prevalent since possibilities of physical, digital, symbolic and material border-crossing have not declined. Yet, the extent and effect of global communication is hard to measure up until today. One of the reasons is that global media and communication studies have focused primarily on how media and communication systems are integrated or connected, for example in research about the global integration of media systems, the growth of transnational organizations, the flow of media and cultural products or the global public sphere. Besides systemic approaches, local adaptations of global cultural narratives have been investigated in the field of media cultural studies. Despite the importance to understand local adoption, it does not provide a profound explanation of the multilayered communicative interactions of individuals, groups or communities across borders either. We do not know very much about the implications and mechanisms of global communication in everyday social realities. Global communication studies tend to ignore global communication processes in the lifeworld of people. “Global understanding” as a social practice beyond systemic or structuralist approaches is a desideratum in theory building. 

Especially in times of growing neo-nationalist, right-wing and post-truth politics, of returning racism and discrimination in public space, of culturalism and xenophobia in national discourses, it is even more necessary to scientifically complement globalization processes in the very realm of the everyday. Recognition of and communicative interaction with the “global other” are the prerequisites for globalization that not only builds on co-orientation, but also on cross-border dialogues. 

The international conference seeks to focus on the globalization processes of communication in everyday lifeworlds: How does global dialogue look like beyond political and economic systems? Do individuals, groups and communities interact globally and how does that change their social and cultural life, their global knowledge and mutual understanding? How do people communicate across borders through both media and direct interpersonal communication in their everyday lifeworlds? In short: how global is the “global wo/man”?  

Important Dates

Deadline for submissions: May 15, 2017

Notification of decisions on abstracts: June 30, 2017

Registration: will be announced shortly

Conference: October 5th - 6th, 2017



Nutzermenü und Sprachwahl