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17.10.2003

The 17th Conference of the World Communication Association

In July 2003 in Haninge, Sweden there was the 17th Conference of the World Communication Association. The topic of the conference was: "Framing Global Links: Communication and Culture in a Networked World." In the following Alexey Matveev shares his impressions about the conference.

Upon the request of Olga Matyash, the President of RCA, I decided to summarize my impressions on the recent WCA conference in Haninge, Sweden. WCA conferences are held twice a year. In July 2003 there was the 17th conference "Framing Global Links: Communication and Culture in a Networked Word." This year the participants were offered to reflect on what it means "to be a part of a community" on the interpersonal, international, and global levels; what the role of the Internet is in the development of society, how communication changes in an integrated community and what are the features of a person actively involved in interrelations with other community members. As always, the WCA conference was impressive with a diversity of represented communication programs and a pluralism of views and opinions. The fact that the conference site was in the cozy little town of Haninge, 20 minutes from Stockholm, was favorable for discussing the subject matter of the conference.

I was pleasantly surprised by a very warm communication atmosphere at the WCA conference: one could get to know and chat with many famous communication scholars from the USA, Japan, Europe, the Middle East, Canada, Russia, Australia, and other countries. It was very likely due to all the preparatory work of WCA President Sharon Ratliffe (Golden West College) and Vice-president Barbara Monfils (University of Wisconsin-Whitewater). Additionally, the success was influenced by Stockholm, founded in 13th century on 24 thousand islands. Also, pleasant boat trips, a trip to one of the most ancient Viking towns, Birka, and tours of the museums of the royal ship Vasa and the Museum of the Nobel Laureates. All of those things contributed to the achievements of the conference. Definitely, it is worthwhile to think of going to the next WCA conference in Japan in 2005.

Alexey MATVEEV, New York University

 
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