Anna Popkova

Photo of Anna Popkova
Anna Popkova
Assistant Professor of Communication
(269) 387-3156
315 Sprau Tower
Mailing address: 
School of Communication
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5318 USA
  • Ph.D., University of Minnesota School of Journalism and Mass Communication
  • M.A., University of Minnesota School of Journalism and Mass Communication
  • 5 year Public Relations Specialist Degree Siberian State Aerospace University (Russia)
Teaching interests: 
  • Public relations campaigns
  • Public relations research
  • International public relations/strategic communication
  • Strategic communication and social change
Research interests: 
  • International political and strategic communication
  • Media and foreign affairs (with focus on Russia-U.S. relations)
  • Non-state public diplomacy

 Anna Popkova is an Assistant Professor at Western Michigan University School of Communication, and an allied faculty member at WMU Global and International Studies program. Her research examines the relationships between media institutions, media discourses, policymakers, various publics and communication technologies as these apply to such issues as the politics of national identity at national and transnational levels, state and non-state public diplomacy, and the role of culture, technology and communication in shaping the traditions of public participation and civic discourse worldwide. Most of Dr. Popkova’s work focuses on Russia and Russia-U.S. relations and has been published in the Journal of Communication Inquiry, International Journal of Communication, International Communication Gazette and elsewhere. She is currently writing a book (with Professor Philip Seib, University of Southern California) on the strategic narratives that shaped the U.S.-Russian debate on NATO expansion in the 1990s, and the impact of this debate on the current state of Russia-U.S. relations.


Dr. Popkova’s teaching philosophy emphasizes the importance of linking theory and practice. In her service-learning course on public relations campaigns, students have researched and developed campaigns for a number of organizations, including Rootead Enrichment Center, Colleagues International Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Children’s Trauma Assessment Center, Restore Justice Community Program and Friendship House, Western Michigan University Study Abroad program, Western Michigan University International Student Support unit, and Coexist Cafe. In spring of 2019, Dr. Popkova will teach a graduate seminar titled Strategic Communication in Changing Times, exploring the challenges and the opportunities associated with communicating strategically and ethically during times of dramatic social, political, cultural, organizational and technological change.


Dr. Popkova’s research and teaching have also been informed and enriched by her professional experience working as a publicity, marketing, and public relations coordinator, media specialist, and special events assistant for a variety of educational, nonprofit and governmental organizations in the United States and Russia.