Emma L. Briant

Visiting Scholar
[email protected]

Areas of Expertise

Political communication; propaganda and information warfare; Anglo-American relations; foreign policy, media bias and media reporting; US and UK counter-terrorism strategies; reporting of refugees and migration in the UK media; reporting of economic inequality in the media.


Emma's research interests are in the areas of propaganda, influence and censorship in the U.S. and UK, particularly in relation to international conflicts, social issues and inequality debates. Her Economics and Social Research Council Funded doctoral research examined Anglo-American counter-terrorism propaganda and 'strategic communication' since 2001, which is now the subject of her new book 'Propaganda and Counter-terrorism: Strategies for Global Change'. Dr Briant is working here on an important new project with Prof Robert Entman analyzing the Democrats’ political communication in economic inequality debates. In addition, while she is here, Dr. Briant will be conducting research on propaganda war between the US and Russia focused on recent tensions and conflicts in Eastern Europe, as well as completing another project looking at the post-war reconstruction period and propaganda in Iraq. Her other previous published research includes analyses of media coverage of disability during the UK austerity cuts and media reporting of asylum in the UK with the Glasgow Media Group including the book 'Bad News for Refugees' co-authored with Greg Philo and Pauline Donald.


• PhD Sociology, jointly supervised in Politics, University of Glasgow (2011) – ESRC-funded: ‘Special Relationships’ and the Negotiation of the Propaganda ‘War on Terror’ (External Examiner: Prof Stuart Croft - Professor of International Security/Vice-Chancellor, University of Warwick) 

• Diploma in Literature & Creative Writing, Open University, Distinction (2010) 

• MSc Sociology University of Glasgow, Distinction (2007) 

• MRes (Business and Public Management Research) Glasgow Caledonian University (2004) 

• BA International Relations & Politics, Coventry University, 2:1 with Honours (2003)


Peer-Reviewed Books

Briant, E, L (2015) ‘Propaganda and Counterterrorism: Strategies for Global Change' Manchester University Press

Philo, G; Briant, E; Donald, P (2013) Bad News for Refugees, Pluto Press.

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Briant, E L (April 2015) ‘Allies and Audiences: Evolving strategies in Defense and Intelligence Propaganda' in International Journal of Press/Politics (Special Issue), Vol. 20, No. 2. Pp145-165.

Briant, E, Watson, N & Philo, G (Sept 2013) 'Reporting disability in the age of austerity...' in Disability & Society Vol 28 No. 6. pp874-889.

Briant, E; Philo, G; Donald, P (Oct 2013) 'The Role of the Press in the War on Asylum' in Race & Class Vol. 55 No. 2. pp28-41.

Published Reports

Briant, E (2015) Brief Summary Report on Recent US Information Operations and Public Diplomacy Efforts in Countering Terrorism for the Director of the US Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy.

Briant, E; Watson, N & Philo, P (2011) ‘Bad News for Disabled People' Report for Inclusion London.

Philo, G and Briant, E (2008) “Community Cohesion and the Role of the Local” JCPR/Mayor of London.

King, K et al. (2004) “UK Social Science & the African Continent in 2004" Report to the ESRC.

Book Chapters, Blogs & Journalism

Briant, E L (In Print 2017) ‘Rights, reporting and mass-surveillance in a digital age’ in Tumber, Howard & Waisbord, Silvio, Routledge Companion to Media and Human Rights, London: Routledge.

Briant, E L & Harkins, S (In Print 2016) 'Managing Social Impacts of Austerity Britain: neo-liberal ‘nudging’ and mainstream media scapegoats' in Berry, D (Ed.) Cultural Politics in an Age of Austerity, London: Ashgate.

Briant, E, L (3rd May 2016) ‘Failure of British Reporting Refugees to Europe’ in UN Association’s New World Magazine

Briant, E L (18th November 2015) ‘West’s crisis of communication will make terrorist atrocities more likely’ in The Conversation.

Briant, E L (23rd July 2015) ‘Sirens of the Potomac: Think-tanks and Torture’ in CounterPunch.

Briant, E L (27th November 2014) 'Lee Rigby report another weapon in the propaganda war', inThe Conversation.

Briant, E L (28th Sept 2013) 'The UK Media needs to stop referring to refugees as 'illegal immigrants'' in New Statesman Blog.

Briant, E (2007) “The Struggle for Public Opinion within the Media and Information War on Terror” in Edited Volume - NATO Teaching Series: Media a Terrorist’s Battlefield: IOS Press.


Dr Briant recently received grants (as Co-Investigator) for an Economics and Social Research Council-Funded Seminar Series 'DATA-PSST! Debating and Assessing Transparency Arrangements - Privacy, Security, Surveillance, Trust': £30,000 (with Dr Vian Bakir) and a 'White Rose Collaboration Grant': £10,660 (with Dr Alexandra Hall, York) ‘Europe, migration and the new politics of (in)security. She is on the Editorial Board for Defence Strategic Communication, an academic journal published by NATO. Dr Briant is open to possible new opportunities, collaborations and consultancy during this time.