Dr. Johanna Dunaway, Texas A&M University associate professor of communication, has conducted extensive research on the effects of the media on politics.
More specifically, her studies show that when local newspapers close, less reporting of local news occurs, which widens the political divide.
Dunaway will discuss her findings during an hourlong discussion 1 p.m. Monday, April 15, in Room 1109 of Jenkins Hall on the Tyler Junior College main campus.
Admission is free and the public is invited to attend.
In her research, Dunaway has examined the impact of the changing contemporary media environment across individuals, groups, and local communities. Her research indicates that when less local news is available, consumers tend to see everything through the lens of national news, which means local issues take on partisan labels. Even non-partisan local elections and issues become viewed through conservative or liberal party perspectives, which tends to create more division at the local level.
Dunaway has also examined local news coverage of political campaigns, immigration, and events. In addition, she has published in other areas including public opinion, political behavior, and political advertising.