Dr Alenka Jelen

Senior Lecturer

Communications, Media and Culture University of Stirling, Stirling, FK9 4LA

Dr Alenka Jelen

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About me

Alenka is Programme Director of three postgraduate programmes: MSc Strategic Communication and Public Relations (Joint Degree with Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona), MSc Strategic Public Relations and Communication Management and MSc Strategic Public Relations (online). She teaches postgraduate modules on public relations and public communication theories, public affairs and advocacy, media relations and production and research methods. She is Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK. 

Her current research interest is in public relations, political and communication studies with a focus on public relations as an academic discipline; relationships between media and politics; gender in media and public relations; health communication in the areas of reproductive rights and COVID-19 and public communication of loss and mortality. She specialises in qualitative research, particularly expert interviews and framing analysis. Her research has been published in international academic journals Public Relations Inquiry, British Politics and Public Relations Review, edited books, professional public relations publications and regularly presented at academic conferences, including ECREA European Communication Conferences, MeCCSA conferences, EUPRERA congresses, BledCom symposia, British Sociological Association conferences and Political Studies Association conferences. 

She is a member of a EUPRERA (European Public Relations Education and Research Association) research network Women in Public Relations and co-investigator in the project Leadership and Trust: Public Communication of Covid in Scotland funded by the Scottish Founding Council under the leadership of Queen Margaret University. Between April 2020 and September 2021, she led the project Government Communication and COVID-19: A Comparison between Scotland and UK. She was a Co-Investigator in AHRC-MRC funded project Right to Health in Prison (2018-2020) and in the EU funded Erasmus+ AwarEU project (2016-2018), an international and interdisciplinary initiative to promote democratic values, intercultural understanding and active citizenship in the EU.

She has been an Instructor of Expert Interviews at the ECPR (European Consortium for Political Research) Summer Schools in Methods and Techniques since 2008 and has taught qualitative interview research at several universities and research institutes across Europe and Canada. In 2017, she won a prestigious ECPR Cora Maas Award for the best-evaluated course at the ECPR Summer Methods School.

Alenka is a founding member and Advisory Board Member of MethodsNET – Methods Excellence Network. She is also a member of ECREA (European Communication Research and Education Association) Advisory Board. She was the ECREA General Secretary (2012-2016) and a member of the ECREA Executive Board (2009-2016). 

She joined the University of Stirling in September 2013 from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) where she was Senior Lecturer in Public Relations. Prior to UCLan, she worked as a Teaching Assistant and a Public Relations Adviser at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Alenka holds a PhD in the field of Social Sciences - Communication from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, an MSc in International Applied Communication from the University of Central Lancashire, UK, and a BSc in Communication Science - Marketing and Marketing Communication also from the University of Ljubljana.

For her undergraduate dissertation titled ‘International Comparison of Study Programmes in the Field of Communication Studies' she received EUPRERA (European Public Relations Education and Research Association) Jos Willems Award for best undergraduate dissertation in 2005.

Outside of academia, she has public relations experience and experience in broadcast media as a journalist, radio news director, overseas correspondent, television host, and ad copywriter.