Faculty research is a cornerstone of MSU and key to an innovative learning environment. The College of Communication Arts and Sciences (ComArtSci) Office for Research (O4R), under the direction of Associate Dean for Research Kami Silk, supports ComArtSci faculty research and creative activities by helping faculty identify, pursue, and obtain external funding for their work. ComArtSci is home to amazing faculty researchers and houses two of the top doctoral programs in the field. The college has 3 strategic research priorities: Health and Risk Communication, International and Intercultural Communication, and Communication Technologies.
1. Health & Risk Communication
The college's internationally renowned Health and Risk Communication Center (HRCC) researchers have ongoing partnerships on campus and across the world to address health and risk communication issues. They also develop traditional communication campaign design and evaluation, as well as behavior-change research. Faculty affiliated with the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism research the role of communication in environmental risk and are positioned to train international teams of journalists on environmental and science communication issues.
The college's recent initiative, Trifecta, has been designed to build collaborative partnerships with faculty in MSU's Colleges of Engineering and Nursing. Named for three winning colleges, the initiative was created to address the large-scale health and risk communication challenges of diverse populations through technological solutions. Finally, Children's Central, housed in the Department of Advertising and Public Relations, brings together researchers who study the health effects of advertising and marketing on kids and the policy-frameworks associated with this issue.
Understanding the development, adoption and impact of new media technologies is a long-standing strength of the college. The world of communication is ever changing with the development of new technologies. Dynamics of the Internet, social media, gaming, mobile apps, usability, and the political and economic implications of communication are all areas in which CAS faculty members conduct funded research.
2. Communication Technologies
Understanding the impact of communication technologies on behaviors and systems is another focus of research within the college; ComArtSci is also home to premier research in telemedicine. The college has several research facilities that specialize in new communication technology, including the Behavior, Information, and Technology Laboratory (BITLab), the Communication Technology Lab (Comm Tech Lab), the Games for Entertainment and Learning Lab (GEL Lab), and the Quello Center for Telecommunication Management and Law. Additionally, the college's integrated media arts program, Media Sandbox, has expertise in data visualization, digital media production, serious game research, and other research on creation of content.
3. International and Intercultural Communication
Researchers in ComArtSci also address pressing international communication questions in countries all over the world. Faculty members working in this area examine the ways in which cultural differences and similarities influence the ways people interact with each other and their environment. Our research in Information and Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D) examines the ways in which communication technologies can address development challenges related to economics, health, education, and the environment; our researchers in this realm are core to MSU/USAID's Global Center for Food System Innovation (GCFSI). In collaboration with the College of Veterinary Medicine, the college is hosting an NIH-sponsored series of symposia entitled "One Health: The Role of New and Emerging Communication Technology in Human Decision-Making and Behavior." This project will bring together researchers from around the country to identify key research questions in emerging communication technology and global health around the theme of "One Health."