Emma BriantDr Emma L Briant

Lecturer in Journalism Studies

Tel: (+44) (0)114 222 2498
Email: e.briant@sheffield.ac.uk
Twitter: @EmmaLBriant

Room 211
Office hours: by appointment

BA (Hons) (Coventry), MRes (Glasgow Caledonian), MA, PhD (Glasgow)

Emma came to the department in 2013 after gaining her PhD at the University of Glasgow. Her research interests are in the areas of propaganda, influence and censorship in the US and UK, war reporting, counter-terrorism and governmental adaptation to a changing media environment. Her doctoral research examined Anglo-American counter-terrorism propaganda and 'strategic communication' since 2001, which is now the subject of her new book Propaganda and Counter-terrorism: Strategies for Global Change. Her other recent published research includes analyses of media coverage of disability and asylum in the UK with the Glasgow Media Group, where she worked before coming to Sheffield.

As of summer 2016 Emma is taking leave from her post at Sheffield to undertake research at George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs, working with Professor Robert Entman on a new project examining the Democratic Party's communication and debates of economic inequality in the US. Until she returns in August 2017 her email address will be emmabriant@gwu.edu.

Emma is co-investigator on a £30,000 ESRC seminar series grant, researching 'DATA-PSST! Debating and Assessing Transparency Arrangements - Privacy, Security, Surveillance, Trust'. Policy recommendations and full summaries can be viewed on the DATAPSST! website. More recently, Emma as co-investigator and lead academic secured a White Rose Collaboration Grant of £10,660 (with Dr Alexandra Hall, York) to research 'Europe, migration and the new politics of (in)security'.

She is on the editorial board for the NATO journal Defence Strategic Communications, reviews for several publishers and academic journals and has given a number of national and international invited talks and visits, including at George Washington University and New York University.

Emma is an honorary fellow of the Sheffield Institute for International Development, an associate fellow of the Sir Bernard Crick Centre for Public Understanding of Politics in the Department of Politics at Sheffield, and a member of the Digital Society Network and the Migration Research Group. She is seeking further collaborations within the University and beyond.

Emma recently won both institutional and regional awards for Student Employer of the Year and was entered in the national level competition.




Emma has experience teaching across a wide range of areas in media, propaganda and political communication, and also teaches on the Research Methods module. Emma has introduced a number of popular innovations on her modules including a propaganda role-play and blog.

Emma is module leader on the following modules:

Research and PhD supervision

Emma's primary interests for supervision are related to propaganda, representation and censorship. She is particularly interested in supervising on topics related to:

  • security, migration, and conflict
  • political sociology including cultures of power (especially elites), hegemony and cultural change
  • British and US politics and foreign policy (especially relating to human rights, counter-terrorism and eastern Europe/Russia).

Recent and forthcoming publications


Briant, E (2015) Propaganda and Counterterrorism: Strategies for Global Change, Manchester University Press

Briant, E; Philo, G; Donald, P (2013) Bad News for Refugees, Pluto Press

Articles, chapters and reports

Briant, Emma L (April 2015) 'Allies and Audiences: Evolving strategies in Defense and Intelligence Propaganda' in International Journal of Press and Politics vol 20, no 2, pp145-165

Emma L Briant (27 November 2014) 'Lee Rigby report is another weapon in the propaganda war' in The Conversation

Briant, E; Philo, G; Donald, P (October 2013) 'The Role of the Press in the War on Asylum' in Race and Class, vol 55 no 2

Briant, Emma L (28 September 2013) 'The UK Media Needs to Stop Referring to Refugees as "Illegal Immigrants"' in New Statesman

Briant, Emma L, Nick Watson and Greg Philo (September 2013) 'Reporting Disability in the Age of Austerity: the changing face of media representation of disability and disabled people in the United Kingdom and the creation of new folk devils' in Disability and Society, vol 28 no 6

Briant, Emma L., Watson, N & Philo, G (2011) 'Bad News for Disabled People: How the newspapers are reporting disability', Strathclyde Centre for Disability Research and Glasgow Media Unit Report for Inclusion London

Philo, G and Emma L Briant (2008) 'Community Cohesion and the Role of the Local', report for the Office of Lord Mayor of London, commissioned by Jackie Cooper Public Relations

Emma L Briant 'The Struggle for Public Opinion within the Media and Information War on Terror' in NATO Centre of Excellence Defence Against Terrorism (2007) The Media: The Terrorists' Battlefield, IOS Press


See also

A selection of Emma's published work can be seen at her personal website.

You can also follow Emma on Twitter: @emmalbriant