Challenges in Strategic Communication and Fighting Propaganda in Eastern Europe is an editorial project which follows and builds on the results of the NATO Advanced Research Workshop, organized by the CPD-SNSPA and the Institute for Development and Social Initiatives (IDIS) in April 2018 in Chisinau.

The workshop brought together institutional, academic and civic experts from the social sciences, journalism, computer science, and international relations to share insights into security and strategic communication, as well as research results and expertise on the impact of social media and technological innovation, in order to shape a new project, with a common methodology, to monitor, collect, process and interpret reliable data on strategic communication, which can enable the devising of efficient tools to counteract anti-Western propaganda. The book includes papers developed on the basis of the ideas, theses and projects discussed during this successful event.

The core thesis that crosses the entire work is synthesized by the editor in the very first pages of the volume: The Western model is under attack all across the countries of Eastern and Central Europe, but also “at home”, in the countries belonging to the core of the EU and even in the United States. And while the messages and dissemination methods differ and adjust to each national context, the effect is the same – the slow, but progressive erosion of trust in the democratic values, as well as the institutions which embody this model. This is the main reason why we concluded that stopping this erosion and defending this model must be a coordinated effort, using the best-suited methods and channels for each segment of the public. The novelty of the approach we proposed resides in coordination (which can also mean the sharing of best-practice models to be adjusted and reproduced in other regions) and also in using the most advanced research and online communication methods, creating a complex methodological mix (based on traditional research tools, but also incorporating Big Data analysis and exploration into the latest, most effective communication tools across social networks).

With contributions about Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, the Western Balkans and the USA highlighting challenges such as detecting propaganda, identifying the groups most vulnerable to its influence and building mechanisms to strengthen trust, the book will be of value to all those with an interest in defending the Western democratic model.

You can check out and download the eBook here


Strengthening Links Between Citizens, Governments and Media as a Strategy to Combat Propaganda by Rusty Brooks

Towards a Better Understanding of Anti-Western Propaganda & Building an Efficient Model to Fight Back by Dan Sultănescu, Dana Sultănescu and Daniel Buti

Vision of the Future Cooperation Between the Republic of Moldova and NATO by Igor Munteanu

Hybrid Aggression. The Ukrainian Case by Yevhen Mahda

Information Operations in the Western Balkans by John Cappello and Daniel Sunter

“Question More” – But Not Too Much. Mapping Russia’s Malign Master Narratives in Central and Eastern Europe by Corina Rebegea

Tracking Russia’s Digital Deception – Analysis of the Kremlin’s Information Operations on Social Media by Bret Schafer

Using a Semantic Networks Approach to Monitor and Evaluate Influence on Social Media by Itai Himelboim and Daud Isa

The Pitfalls of Propaganda – The Theoretical Challenge by Radu Cucută

Fighting Fake News – The Key Role of the Public by Roxana Bratu, Darie Cristea and Diana-Alexandra Dumitrescu

Echo Chambers and Polarization of Opinion: When Multiple Voices Create Multiple Realities by Alina Bârgăoanu and Flavia Durach