stephanie De Munter

stephanie De Munter

Participant in 2014
Work history Key account manager International PR for PR Newswire Belgium (head office in The Hague) april 2009- now: portfolio of existing accounts, such as communication companies (Ogilvy, ESN, Weber Shandwick, ..) BTC (Mars Petcare) and BTB (e.g. Ansell Healthcare). Developping portfolio of new accounts, through sales and marketing campaigns.
2005-2009: Technogym, the Wellness Company, Rotterdam: sales development for BTC clients in Belgium and Luxembourg.
Internships for Ana Martins PR, NYC, New York and The Communication Company, Breda, Netherlands.
Study history January 2014: PhD student for communication sciences at UAntwerpen under Prof. P. De Vries
December 2013: Georgetown for continuing studies: social media for government
2009-2010: Teaching degree
2002-2004: Master in Communication at KULeuven
2003: erasmus at Ramon Llull, Barcelona, Spain
200-2002:Bachelor in communication, UAntwerpen
1999-2000:Latin sciences at Jesuits school, Antwerp

Phd Projects


The influence of online successes of political campaigns in the US on Belgian political communication

The groundbreaking way in which social media were strategically used in Obama's 2008 campaign has been the subject of several research and study. Trending channels such as Facebook and Twitter had been proven to be important communication means of influence. In the first stage, this research wants to deduct the best practices out of US campaigns- not only limited to Obama's campaign - and wants to create a US model of these common used online tactics. This will be done through literature and interviews with communication experts. In the second part of this research we would like to research how this model influences political campaigns around the world, especially Belgium. Social media form a perfect platform for online citizenship and could be useful to reach out to Belgian electors as well, if used in the right way. Since 80% of the Belgian population has access to the internet, the expectation lives that the group of people with one or more social media accounts will be growing and will become more important to political marketeers. The data for this research will be gathered during 2014 elections, that are taking place on a European, national and local level. Based on these data, in combination with interviews with experts, we can develop a Belgian model of the use of online practices and compare this to the American one. We expect to find an influence, but not an exact 'copy and paste' of the strategies. We assume these online tactics to win votes will be adapted to a Belgian context. Also we expect to find differences between the national and local level of campaigning. Influencing factor can be for example that in the US there is the suffrage, and in Belgium there is the system of compulsory voting - but probably we will find more explanations. To conclude we expect to find a difference in use of tactics in intensity between extreme parties and more centered parties. And that the influence of the regions, Flanders versus the French speaking south, will be of great importance in the choice, the level of intensity and the all over vision of online tactics in campaigning. With the building of these models we aim to gain more insight in the use of online tactics, what their added value for the electorate is, and to learn how to recognize it when used, as a voter.

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