S. Shyam Sundar named Fellow by International Communication Association

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — S. Shyam Sundar, distinguished professor in the Bellisario College of Communications at Penn State, was named a Fellow by the International Communication Association (ICA) at the group’s annual conference, held May 25-29 in San Diego.

Recognition as an ICA Fellow provides confirmation of Sundar’s impact in the field of communication research. Fellow status is primarily a recognition of distinguished scholarly contributions to the broad field of communication. It also recognizes contributions to the association.

The award noted that Sundar is the most published author of internet-related research in the field during the medium’s first decade: “A distinguishing feature of his work is its emphasis on theory testing and theory development. He has proposed and tested novel theoretical frameworks about social and psychological aspects of online mass-communication.”

Sundar’s research investigates social and psychological effects of technological elements unique to online communication, ranging from websites to newer social and personal media. In particular, his studies experimentally investigate the effects of interactivity, navigability, multi-modality and agency (source attribution) in digital media interfaces upon online users’ thoughts, emotions and actions. In naming Sundar as a Fellow, the association noted that “his work on the impression formation effects of interactivity in websites is among the most cited by both academics and practitioners.”

His research is supported by the National Science Foundation, Korea Science and Engineering Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, and Lockheed Martin Information Systems and Global Services, among others.

Sundar was among the first to publish refereed research on the effects of internet-based media in Journal of Communication, the ICA’s flagship publication. His work has also appeared in other leading journals, such as Communication Research, Human Communication Research, Media Psychology, Human Computer Interaction, International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, Behaviour & Information Technology, The Information Society, Journal of Advertising, and Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly.

In addition, he has published in leading conference proceedings such as CHI (Computer Human Interaction), HRI (Human Robot Interaction), and INTERACT.

A frequently cited source on technology, Sundar has testified before Congress as an expert witness and delivered talks at several universities in the United States, Germany, Netherlands, Hong Kong, Korea, China, Singapore and India. He has served on the editorial boards of 18 journals, including Communication Research, Journal of Communication, Human Communication Research, Media Psychology, Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, and Journal of Advertising.

In 2015, he edited the Handbook of the Psychology of Communication Technology, published by Blackwell Wiley. He is currently editor-in-chief of the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, an official ICA journal with the highest impact factor in the field. He was elected chair of the Communication & Technology Division and served as vice president of ICA from 2008 to 2010.

ICA is an academic association for scholars interested in the study, teaching and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication. ICA began more than 50 years ago as a small association of U.S. researchers and is now a truly international association. Since 2003, ICA has been officially associated with the United Nations as a non-governmental association.

Last Updated May 31, 2017