Civil Society, Media and Public Diplomacy

Christos Frangonikolopoulos

EUJ 215 Civil Society, Media and Public Diplomacy


About This Course

Course Description

Τhe course examines how transnational and multidimensional civil society efforts can work in the trajectory of enhancing the transparency, legitimacy and awareness of European politics and media, by creating spaces for alternative theorizations to mainstream paradigms, aiming and shaping shape conducive ground for alternative, potentially groundbreaking policies, as well as functioning in the direction of existing policies, making them more efficient. In addition, the course will also introduce and examine the concept of strategic communication discursive processes and how it can play an essential role in politics and diplomacy in the twenty-first century.  Strategic refers to the need to focus on the mounting problems for and relevant to most, if not all, parts of the global population.  Discursive refers to the need to create hubs for discussion, argumentation and counter-argumentation, and feedback.

Course Objectives

The aim of this course is to explore the digitalization of diplomacy and to shed light on the adaptation level of the European Union by presenting its activity on social media. The main teaching and research questions posed are:

  1. in what ways has the European Union used digital tools to respond to crises?
  2. what are the (recurring) challenges facing the European Union so as to improve its image in a changing world and enhance its role as a leading global actor?
  3. how the diversity and dense texture of civil society and the new media can contribute to European politics/diplomacy?

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the course, students will be able to critically understand how EUPD can and should encourage discursive processes, strengthening the European public sphere with regard to the profoundly political and critical issues of the present era.

Class/Learning activities

This course will employ seminar lectures and discussions, student in-class presentations, and individual investigative reports.

Course Evaluation

  • Presentations and verbal contributions by all students are essential. It is expected that students attend each class. Each student will be responsible for one or two presentations. During the presentation, students present an effective summary of their prescribed reading/research, offer their insight into its arguments/significance and direct class discussion on it.
  • Each student will write an investigative report (roughly 5.000 words, incl. references/footnotes). Bibliography will be suggested and if possible be provided by the instructor. Students will work and research in greater detail their class presentations or in collaboration with their professor agree on a specific topic they would like to research/write.



Type of work

Description Hours
Lectures Thirteen 3-hours lectures 39
Independent study Study of compulsory and optional literature 61
Research Online research 30
Presentations Student in-class presentations (individual or group presentations) 50
Written assignments

Written assignments

Research essay (5000 words) and investigative report (3000 words)

in-class presentations

Total workload 300


Type of assessment Learning outcome Impact on final grade Date of assessment
Participation in group work and discussion 1-2 10% Regularly
In class presentations 1-2, 5 30% 7th and 13th week
Investigative reports 3-4 30% 13th week
Written assignment (essay) 1-5 30% 13th week