Joseph Erba

Associate Professor
Primary office:
1435 Jayhawk Boulevard
Lawrence, KS


Joseph Erba, Ph.D. is an assistant professor in the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications. He joined the KU faculty in the fall of 2014 from American University in Washington D.C. He has also taught communication classes at the University of Corsica, and media ethics and strategic communication classes at the University of North Carolina. Erba's research interests include public relations in higher education, multicultural communication, media representations of racial/ethnic minorities and racial/ethnic identity development. His research goals are to better understand how low income and/or racial/ethnic minority publics interpret media messages and how to enhance communication with these audiences in a culturally relevant manner. Erba has received awards for his research exploring how racial/ethnic minority audiences respond to messages containing racial/ethnic cues from the International Communication Association and the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. He obtained his doctoral degree from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a Roy H. Park doctoral fellow. Prior to his doctoral studies, Erba practiced public relations in Kansas City, working for an integrated marketing communications agency.

Teaching Interests

  • Intercultural communication
  • Strategic communication
  • Communication theory
  • Communication research
  • Media ethics

Research Interests

  • Representations of and communication with racial/ethnic minorities
  • Public relations in higher education
  • Media literacy & Intercultural competence
  • Racial/Ethnic identity development

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