The Fifteenth Serbian Political Science Association Annual International Conference responds to the growing need to explain political, economic, and social processes dominated by disinformation, misinformation and fake news. Fake news has become one of the main methods of governing and the instrument for creating and maintaining political influence. It is necessary to explain where this growing influence comes from, which institutions protect true information, and what are the warning mechanisms that check and combat disinformation.
The academic and professional communities have a significant role in analyzing such phenomena. They are called upon to contribute to defining policies and strategies to deal with fake news and disinformation not only in the field of journalism and media but in society as a whole. The academic community also has the responsibility to communicate the facts and reliable data obtained by rigorous research more transparently to the public.
We, therefore, invite scientists, researchers, media analysts, journalists, and civic activists to join us in trying to explain:
- Which institutions need to be strengthened or built to combat fake news and disinformation?
- How do political and social agents—political parties, political and civic movements, and citizens—react to fake news?
- What is the future of informative chaos we live in?
Modern technologies have enabled the increasing use of news and information that are difficult to verify. As deliberate production of false information with the intention to influence public opinion, disinformation has largely influenced political, economic and social processes, e. g. elections, referenda, migrations, labor market, environmental pollution and climate change, vaccination, LGBT minorities, etc.
In the last few decades, a specific form of political regime (information autocracy) has emerged, where the manipulation of information in order to remain in office stands out as the central mechanism of government. Politicians, media, journalists (who increasingly violate the code of media ethics), and other social agents actively participate in maintaining such regimes. Moreover, the state supports tabloid media which violate the code of ethics and daily produce false news and disinformation.
How should society and the state react to these processes? Fact-checking organizations, of which there are only a few in the region of the Western Balkans and the post-communist Europe, regularly check the media content, but the results of their work usually remain out of reach of mainstream media and rarely reach citizens because of political control of the most popular media. Civic associations and social movements have a slightly stronger influence, but they reach a limited number of citizens.
Possible panels at the Conference:
- Oversight institutions, democracy, and media system;
- Monitoring and assessing the reputation of media participants;
- Fake news and migration;
- Fake news and environmental protection;
- Fake news and economic development;
- Fake news and the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic;
- Social movements as producers of alternative information;
- The role of academic community in the age of disinformation.
To apply, please email us your application that contains: the name and the affiliation, the title of your presentation, abstract (up to 200 words) and 3-5 keywords.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; deadline: 1 August 2021
International organizing committee:
- prof. Lejla Turčilo, University of Sarajevo, Bosnia & Hercegovina
- prof. Igor Vobič, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
- prof. Jelena Kleut, University of Novi Sad, Serbia
- prof. Agnieszka Stępińska, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, Poland
- prof. Marijana Grbeša, University of Zagreb, Croatia
- prof. Aleksandra Krstić, University of Belgrade, Serbia