[NEW DEADLINE] Comunicação e Sociedade: call for papers on “Health communication during a pandemic”

Editors: Felisbela Lopes (CECS, University of Minho, Portugal), Rita Araújo (CECS, University of Minho, Portugal) and Peter Schulz (University of Lugano, Switerzland)

Health communication is an interdisciplinary scientific area that gathers Communication Sciences and Health Sciences, namely Medicine both also Public Health, Nursing, and Psychology (Zoller & Kline, 2008). Even though there are several definitions of Health Communication, behavior change is often pointed out as one of its main goals. Indeed, Health Communication aims at involving, capacity-building, and influencing individuals and communities (Schiavo, 2014).

According to the World Health Organization (1998), Health Journalism is an area within Health Communication, such as interpersonal communication, media advocacy or organizational communication. But it is also a Journalism specialization. In fact, although one can understand Health Journalism as a small part of journalism, it has its specificities, just as economic, political or sports journalism. Hallin and Briggs (2014) argue that medical and health journalism is, to a certain extent, different than other kinds of journalism, since health journalists often reveal more didactic and instrumental conceptions of their role. This “hybrid” character of health journalism is one of the characteristics that makes this an interesting object of study for journalism studies (Hallin & Briggs, 2014).

In the past few decades, the emergency of infectious diseases and the increase of chronic diseases reinforced the role of health journalism, since the media have a central social role in portraying these stories. Recent global outbreaks, such as Influenza A (2009) or Ebola (2014), and the Covid-19 pandemic we are experiencing right now, demonstrate the need to invest in Health Journalism and Health Communication. These can be essential tools in fighting pandemics, contributing to informed and health-capacitated audiences and influencing both individual and collective behaviors. Indeed, Health Journalism and Health Communication may have a significant impact in lay people, especially within a public health crisis setting, contributing to health promotion and disease prevention.

This volume of Comunicação e Sociedade focuses on the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and aims at gathering researchers from different geographies in thinking about Health Journalism and Health Communication within a global health crisis. Nowadays, the diversity of media platforms, the change in habits of media consumption, or the increase of fake news and disinformation bring renewed challenges to the fields of Health Journalism and Health Communication. Therefore, it is important to understand what is being done, both nationally and internationally, to deal with these challenges and to reinforce the role of journalism and communication applied to health.


Paper proposals should focus one of more of the following topics:

– Health Communication and the Covid-19 pandemic;

– Health Journalism and the Covid-19 pandemic;

– Relationships between media and news sources within a pandemic;

– What impact does confinement have on journalism?

– Covid-19 and disinformation/fake news;

– The importance of health literacy within public health;

– The role of Health Journalism and Health Communication in behavior change.



Deadline for submission: January 29th 2021 February 15th 2021

Notification of acceptance: april 30th 2021

Deadline for complete and translated article: june 30th 2021

Publication: December 2021



Articles can be submitted in English or Portuguese. After the peer review process, the authors of the selected articles should ensure translation of the respective article, and the editors shall have the final decision on publication of the article.



Comunicação e Sociedade is a peer-reviewed journal that uses a double blind peer review process. After submission, each paper will be distributed to two reviewers, previously invited to evaluate it, in terms of its academic quality, originality and relevance to the objectives and scope of the theme chosen for the journal’s current issue.

Originals must be submitted via the journal’s website. If you are accessing Comunicação e Sociedade for the first time, you must register in order to submit your article (indications to register here).

The guidelines for authors can be consulted here.

For further information, please contact: comunicacaoesociedade@ics.uminho.pt

[Posted: 04-12-2020]