University of Missouri

PCI Co-Director Dr. Benjamin R. Warner was named the inaugural recipient of the Judith S. Trent Award for Early Career Excellence in Political Communication at the 2019 Central States Communication Association conference in Omaha, Nebraska. PCI co-directors Benjamin R. Warner Mitchell S. McKinney edited a volume of political communication research along with colleagues from the University of Kansas and Iowa State University. The volume, entitled “An Unprecedented Election: Media, Communication, and the Electorate in the 2016 Campaign” was published by ABC-CLIO in February of 2018. Click here to learn more about the important research being conducted by PCI faculty and research associates. The PCI is focused on helping Missouri communities to foster dialogue and engage the public. In 2018, the PCI created a guide for communities or organizations interested in hosting a local debate or candidate forum. Click here to learn more about how to plan and organize a debate. Undergraduate research fellows have an opportunity to participate directly in the research process as members of the PCI at the University of Missouri. In 2016, fellows traveled to the Iowa caucuses to survey attendees at presidential campaign rallies. During the 2018 midterms, fellows assisted with both quantitative and qualitative research projects and attended lectures from PCI faculty and research associates. Click here to learn more about our past fellows and how to get involved with the PCI as an undergraduate student. PCI Director, Dr. Mitchell S. McKinney is one of the nation’s leading researchers on presidential debates. His scholarship has been featured in many of the top academic journals in communication and political science, including the Journal of Communication, Communication Monographs, American Behavioral Scientist, and Journalism Studies. Dr. McKinney’s debate research is frequently cited by national and international news outlets such as USA Today, TIME Magazine, Washington Post, and the Daily Mail. Interested journalists can arrange interviews with any PCI experts through the MU News Bureau.

Our Purpose

The Political Communication Institute (PCI) at the University of Missouri develops knowledge and promotes greater understanding of how communication functions in the practice of politics and achievement of democracy. Primary activities of the Institute include conducting original research, sponsoring educational programs, and promoting citizen engagement in political and civic affairs. The PCI is housed within the Department of Communication, a unit of the College of Arts & Science at the University of Missouri.

Events & Announcements