SACM - Swiss Association of Communication and Media Research

Our Aims

The Swiss Association of Communication and Media Research (SACM), founded in 1974, represents communication and media research in Switzerland and is mainly oriented towards social sciences. The SACM is a member of the Swiss academy for the Humanities and Social Sciences (SAGW). The members of SACM are comprised of scientists and teaching staff from universities, technical colleges and further education, alongside journalists, experts in communications practice and media research, professional associations and representatives of government agencies and administrative bodies.

The aims of the SACM are to

  • encourage teaching and research in the field of communication and media research in Switzerland,
  • defend its members' common interests,
  • promote the transfer of academic knowledge. To this end, the association addresses the positions of its scientific community in public and assembles academic researchers with experts in media practice.

The SACM organises an annual conference, invests in the support of new academic generations by means of sponsorship and events for junior scholars, strives for a coordinated doctorate programme, and since 2007 has published the "Studies in Communication Sciences" journal in cooperation with the Facoltà di scienze della comunicazione dell’Università della Svizzera italiana.

In the past years, the SACM has intensified international cooperations. On an international level, its aims are to build bridges between professional associations and different scientific traditions in the neighboring countries and to increase the visibility of findings in communication and media research over linguistic and national boundaries. Regular meetings and common events are organized with partner associations in France (SFSIC), Germany (DGPuK), and Austria (ÖGK).


Here you can download the statutes and other important documents of the SACM as pdf files.


The main academic discipline responsible for communications and media is communications and media sciences, which looks at the conditions, meanings, services and effects of public communication, organizational communication and their respective agents. While the discipline would historically have examined the classic mass media, it now also includes non-public individual communications and with that new media and information and communication technologies.

Under the guise of journalistic sciences, academic interest in the published media in fact has a venerable history. The first thesis dedicated to newspapers appeared in Germany as early as 1690. All in all the field of study called 'science of journalism' is older in many places than is often assumed. However, the expansion of the subject and its full institutionalization at university level visibly coincides with the growth of the media sector in the 20th century. Whilst the discipline was offered in Switzerland as early as 1903 at the universities of Zurich and Bern, it remained fairly small-scale right up to the 1990s. The Department of Journalism at Zurich University was founded in 1923, while in 1942 the subject was established at Bern University and lectures given at Freiburg University. However, it was only in the 1960s and 1970s that the subject became available as a minor at individual universities. From the 2000s onwards, the discipline was further expanded by offering degree programmes with a focus on communication and media studies at various universities of applied sciences and by founding corresponding institutes that are also heavily involved in applied research and further education.

Depending on the positioning of the institutes and chairs, the discipline approaches its subject matter or works on its issues with different approaches and methods. The link list to our member institutes provides an overview of communication-related study programmes in Switzerland.