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Communication, Culture & Languages
The Department of Communication, Culture and Languages brings together professors from a variety of disciplines: information and communication sciences, management sciences, sociology, history, foreign languages, cultural studies, design, political science.
Audencia is the only business school in France to host researchers in Information and Communication Sciences (71st CNU section).
Between experimentation and an interdisciplinary approach
International, intercultural and interdisciplinary approaches are central to the team, supported by long-term collaborations with Prof. Colleen Mills (Cantebury, NZ) and Prof. Cynthia Stohl (UCSB, USA). The scholarly and pedagogical programs associated with the department contribute to the development of research and professional practice around communication, media, and cultural processes. Our diverse approaches are complementary, allowing us to produce a fine-grained analysis of the interactions between actors. We try to grasp the multiple mediations at work in project situations: educational projects, action research, support for organizations and communication, media or cultural services.
We claim an interest in action research (intervention research, design research, etc.), project-based teaching, dialogues between the arts and sciences and management, and alternative research and teaching practices that position the department between experimental practices and epistemological questioning.
We work mainly at the Mediacampus, in the heart of the Quartier de la création on the Ile de Nantes: this location places us in a teeming ecosystem of digital, innovation and cultural entrepreneurship players.
Audencia benefits from the expertise and experimentation carried out by members of the department, especially as part of the ECOS2025 strategic plan. Through our research and teaching, we contribute to the education of global citizens and humanistic leaders. Our students and partners will be able to act in the direction of the great challenges of today's transition from approaches in communication and culture: a concern for the other, a concern for relationships, a concern for the heritage and works that underpin the common good.
With a logic of publications, funded projects and seminars, we are invested in each of the challenges structuring the strategic plan:
- Responsible information: our research and teaching focus on the media ecosystem, journalistic practices, the circulation of content, and modes of engagement and participation in political life.
- Inclusive management: we work on issues of diversity, representation, organizational communication modes, implicit marketing.
- Models of sustainability: our research and teaching activities focus on working practices in the cultural industries, the business models of digital platforms, and the ethical design of mediation devices.
The Media and Responsible Engagement group is interested in the ways in which media (understood in the broad sense of connection or relationship) produce engagement, i.e. the mobilization and orientation of social actors in a more or less sustainable way. It pays particular attention to the media systems that enable or, on the contrary, prevent stakeholders from addressing the question of the ethical or responsible character of their engagement. Members of the group thus explore phenomena as diverse as disinformation, journalistic ethics, conspiracy theories, (non-)violent communication, dark advertising, and implicit marketing.
The Design & Fiction group is interested in what fiction does: to a brand, to information, to a course, to a scientific article, to an organization. Here, fiction is juxtaposed with debate: what kind of discussion produces fiction? How does it affect the participants? How far can fiction go: dystopia, fake news, illusion and fantasy?
From there, it's the object of the debate that is questioned through experimentation. The members of the Axis are thus involved in the design of a fictional apparatus, the Factory, in order to assess what, in its materiality, does or does not stimulate debate, change of opinion, or even engagement in individual and/or collective action within this framework.
To build this object, several meetings are planned: with authors and designers, with students, with researchers, and of course with the public.
The aesthetic dimension of organizations and the mobilization of creativity have recently gained momentum in academic research.
At the intersection of the arts, management sciences, and communication studies, the Art, Aesthetics, and Organizations group explores cross-disciplinary research objects oriented toward the study of artistic and creative organizations and, concomitantly, the study of the aesthetic dimension of organizations.
The group's research questions the place and role of art and the artist in organizations, but also in education. They are investigating the forms of entrepreneurship and business models best suited to artistic and creative organizations, as well as arts-based forms of management. Finally, they consider how the passage through artistic forms influences the design of new products, services, and experiences.
The research methods used by the team members are essentially qualitative and largely borrowed from the social sciences.
In the context of globalized issues of ecological and social transition, the members of this thematic unit observe and analyze the processes of writing and circulation of public policies from a communicative and critical perspective, from two main fields: culture (including communication, data and NTICs) and economy (mainly entrepreneurship and social and solidarity economy).
It focuses on the media and technological systems that support the writing and circulation of public policies, the knowledge and discourses mobilized, their concrete arrangements and the sociological dimensions that support them, the members:
- Observe the institutional moments of this writing
- Analyze the practices and discourses of institutions (ministries, international organizations, etc..) and instituting actors (NGOs, social movements, foundations, media, individuals, etc.) in the public space to initiate new policies; discuss, act on public policies; renew those already written, imagine and propose alternatives, adapt to these policies
- Track the circulation of policies and their writing in an internationalized space
Each group presents the progress of its work at several seminars throughout the year, with interventions by members or external guests. Once a semester, the department organizes a session of the seminar "Visualizing the research process": mornings are dedicated to research practice workshops, and afternoons to the presentation of work related to the epistemological reflections of the morning. The department has had the pleasure of welcoming researchers such as Yves Jeanneret, Shelley Bouliane, François Cooren, Jonathan Schroeder, Janet Borgerson, Joëlle le Marec, Julia Bonaccorsi, Marc Jahjah, Chris Bilton, etc.