Livio Calabresi Michele Zizza

Beyond media storytelling: Unobserved narratives and counter-narratives in strategic communication

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The present paper has a threefold objective. First, it stresses the persisting material aspects of information influence operations and narrative warfare, and advocates for a multidisciplinary, holistic approach to the field of strategic communication; one that takes into account the characteristics of the connective role of audiences within the platform society. Second, it offers an overview of long-term communicative strategies implemented by different political actors, to achieve narrative goals and strengthen their soft power (and meta-power). Specifically, the analysis focuses on forms of strategic communication that exceed traditional media and conventional propaganda, deploying more culture-centered forms of public diplomacy. Third, it emphasizes the implications of narrative amplification and narrative convergence in transnational and transmedia communicative phenomena. Finally, it urges Western institutions to assume interoperability as a functional paradigm, and proactively (and more effectively) engage in the ongoing global narrative confrontation.


  • strategic communication
  • StratCom
  • narrative warfare
  • soft power


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