Vanessa Bravo

Assistant Professor of Communications
Long 208D
2850 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244 (336) 278-5510

Brief Biography

B.A., Universidad de Costa Rica; M.A., University of Florida; Ph.D., University of Florida. Fulbright Scholar at the University of Florida in 2001-2003. Fourteen years as a journalist and editor at newspaper La Nacion (Grupo Nacion) in Costa Rica in positions such as online editor and features editor. Strategic communications director at Paniamor Foundation from 1997-1998. Has published work in Public Relations Review, The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, International Journal of Communication, Global Media Journal (American Edition), Revista Internacional de Relaciones Públicas (Universidad de Málaga, Spain) and Palabra Clave (Universidad de La Sabana, Colombia). Has authored a book chapter in Communication and Community (Hampton Press). Has presented research papers at AEJMC, ICA, IPRRC, and SSCA, among others. Taught at the University of Florida from 2008-2011 and at the Universidad de Costa Rica in 2005. Received the Susan Roschwalb Grant for research in international public relations from AEJMC in 2011 and the 2010-2011 Latin American Studies Doctoral Teaching Award from the Center for Latin American Studies, University of Florida. Came to Elon in 2011, where she is the adviser to Elon's chapter of PRSSA.


UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA (UF)                                                                      Gainesville, Florida. USA

2008- 2011      Ph.D. in Mass Communications.

  • Certificate in Latin American Studies.
  • GPA: 3.95.
  • Research areas: strategic use of social media in public relations, international public relations, diasporas as publics, journalism and public relations in Latin America.
  • Dissertation: Conceptualization of Diaspora Relations From the Government Viewpoint: An Exploratory Qualitative Study of Diaspora Relations in the Cases of Costa Rica and El Salvador (Chair: Dr. Juan Carlos Molleda).

2001- 2003      Master of Arts in Mass Communications.

  • GPA: 3.91 / Fulbright Scholar.
  • Graduation with distinction.
  • Thesis: The Costa Rican press on the Internet: The first ten years (Chair: Professor Kurt Kent). Available at

UNIVERSITY OF COSTA RICA (UCR)                                                              San Jose, Costa Rica

Licenciatura degree in Journalism (1996). Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications (1994).

Courses Taught

  • COM312 Strategic Writing
  • COM232 Public Relations and Civic Responsibility
  • COM110 Media Writing
  • COM100 Communications in a Global Age
  • GST436 Latinos in the United States and the Media
  • COR110 The Global Experience

Grants Awarded

  • Summer 2013- Faculty Summer Research to support study about the communication processes of Hispanic immigrants in the Triad area of North Carolina.
  • Summer 2012- Hultquist Grant and New-Faculty Summer Research to support research writing efforts.
  • Spring 2012- Diversity Infusion Project (DIP) to develop the course GST436 Latinos in the United States and the Media.
  • Spring 2011- Susanne A. Roschwalb Grant for International Study and Research in Public Relations. Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC). Public Relations Division. Travel to Costa Rica to conduct dissertation research in 2011.



Bravo, V. & De Moya, M. (2014). Communicating the homeland’s relationship with its diaspora community: The cases of El Salvador and Colombia. The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, 9(3), pp. 1-35.

Bravo, V. (2014). El Salvador and Costa Rica’s state-diaspora relations management. International Journal of Communication, 8 (22). Available at .

Bravo, V. (2013). Communicating external voting rights to diaspora communities: challenges and opportunities in the cases of El Salvador and Costa Rica. Revista Internacional de Relaciones Públicas,3 (5), 5-26.

Bravo, V. (2013). Studying diaspora relations in the field of global public relations. In P. Moy (Ed), Communication and Community. ICA Annual Conference Theme Book Series. New York: Hampton Press.

Bravo, V., Molleda, J.C., Giraldo, A.F., & Botero, L.H. (2013). Testing cross-national conflict shifting theory: An analysis of Chiquita Brands`transnational crisis in Colombia. Public Relations Review, 39 (1), pp. 57-59. (Available online 22 October 2012 at )

Bravo, V. (2012). Engaging the diaspora: El Salvador and Costa Rica´s use of social media to connect with their diaspora communities in the United States. Global Media Journal – American Edition, 11 (21). Fall 2012 edition. Available at

Giraldo, A.F., Botero, L.H., Molleda, J.C., & Bravo, V. (2011). Crisis transnacional global en relaciones públicas: El caso Chiquita Brands. Palabra Clave, 14 (1), pp. 31-52. Comunicación Estratégica. Universidad de La Sabana. Bogotá, Colombia.


Bravo, V. (2014). Diaspora Online: Identity Politics and Romanian Migrants. By Ruxandra Trandafoiu. Brooklyn, New York: Berghahn Books, 2013, 224 pages. International Migration Review, 48(2) (Summer 2014), pp.571-572.   


Selected Presentations

De Moya, M. & Bravo, V. (2014). The role of public relations In ethnic advocacy and activism: A proposed research agenda. Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) annual conference. Public Relations Division. Montreal, Canada.

Bravo, V. (2014). Meaning of new technologies for the trasnational communication experiences of Latina migrants in the U.S.East Coast. International Communication Association (ICA) annual conference. May 22-26. Seattle, Washington, Communication and Technology Division.

Bravo, V. (2014). Public diplomacy efforts with diaspora communities in the U.S.: Perceptions of Latino diaspora community members. International Public Relations Research (IPRRC) conference. March 6-8. Miami, Florida.

Bravo, V. (2013). Communicating external voting rights to diaspora communities: Challenges and opportunities in the cases of El Salvador and Costa Rica. Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) annual conference. International Communication Division. Washington, DC.

De Moya, M. & Bravo, V. (2013). Communicating the homeland´s relationship with its diaspora community: The cases of El Salvador and Colombia. ICA´s annual conference. Global Communication and Social Change Division. London, England.

Giraldo, A.F., Botero, L.H., Molleda, J.C., & Bravo, V. (2012). Las relaciones públicas como factor de la opinión pública: Análisis de la agenda-setting en la crisis corporativa de Chiquita Brands. V Latin American WAPOR Congress—World Association of Public Opinion Research. Bogotá, Colombia.

Bravo, V. (2012). El Salvador and Costa Rica: Two Central American Opposite Cases in Their State-Diaspora Relations. AEJMC conference. Chicago, Illinois. International Communication Division.

Bravo, V. (2012). Diaspora relations: A specific type of relationship in the field of global public relations. ICA conference. Phoenix, Arizona, Public Relations Division.

Bravo, V. (2012). El Salvador’s state relationship-building efforts with its migrant community in the United States. ICA conference. Phoenix, Arizona. Conference Theme Division.

Bravo, V. (2012).   “Invisible” but soon able to vote: The contradictions of the state-diaspora relations in the case of Costa Rica. Center for Global Public Relations’s annual conference. University of North Carolina-Charlotte.

Molleda, J.C., Bravo, V., Giraldo, A.F., & Botero, L.H. (2011). Testing the Theory of Cross-National Conflict Shifting: A Quantitative Content Analysis and a Case Study of the Chiquita Brands’ Transnational Crisis Originated in Colombia. AEJMC conference. Public Relations Division. St. Louis, Missouri.

Bravo, V., Ferguson, M., Sung, K., & Park, H. (2011). Size matters: Larger public relations agencies offer more social media services than smaller ones. ICA conference. Boston, Massachusetts. Public Relations Division.

Bravo, V. (2011). International government public relations: Conceptualization, functions, and convergence with public diplomacy. Southern States Communication Association (SSCA) conference. Little Rock, Arkansas. Public Relations Division.

Bravo, V. (2010). Persuasive elements in blogs: The case of public relations agencies web sites. AEJMC Midwinter Conference. Norman, Oklahoma. Communication Technology Division.

Bravo, V. (2009). Borrowing the concepts of information asymmetry and information symmetry, as used in economics, to apply them in public relations. AEJMC conference. Boston, Massachusetts. Public Relations Division.


Bravo, V. (2013, August). Connecting students with the community through service learning: Stories and tips. Session presented in collaboration with professors Rebecca Pope-Ruark (Elon University) and Jorge Gaytan (North Carolina A&T State University) at the Annual Teaching and Learning Conference. Elon, North Carolina, 15 August.  

Service Activities


  • FR&D Committee (Faculty Research and Development, university wide. Revision of sabbatical proposals, summer research proposals, funding proposals, distinguished scholar proposals, and more) (since 2013)
  • Faculty Adviser of the International Living Learning Community (ILLC) in the Global Neighborhood (since 2013)
  • Faculty-in-Residence at the Global Neighborhood, Building A, and member of the Global Neighborhood Association (since 2014)
  • Faculty Adviser of the PRSSA's (Public Relations Student Society of America) Elon Chapter (School of Communications) (Since 2013)
  • Second Language Proficiency Committee member (since 2014)
  • Communication Fellows Committee member (School of Communications) (Since 2013)
  • Adviser of 38 Communication majors (mainly Strategic Communications majors) (Since 2011)


  • Residential Campus Advisory Committee member (2013-2014)
  • Faculty-in-Residence at the Isabella Cannon Pavilion (2013-2014)
  • Academic Service-Learning Faculty Advisory Committee (2012-2013)
  • Service Learning Faculty Scholar (2012-2013)
  • Diversity Committee member and chair (School of Communications, 2011-2012, 2012-2013)


  • 2013: Faculty Summer Research Award
  • 2012: Hultquist Award (for Summer Research)
  • 2010: Doctoral Teaching Award Competition. Center for Latin American Studies. University of Florida.
  • 2007, 2003 and 1999: Costa Rica’s National Prize of Music, as member of El Café Chorale choir.
  • 2004: Best News Website (awarded by the Costa Rican Ministry of Science and Technology). Received as the online editor for (newspaper La Nacion´s site).
  • 2001: Fulbright Scholarship. 2001 through 2003, at the University of Florida.
  • 2001: New Media Fellowship, Newspaper Association of America,
  • 1995: “Cristal Ecologico” Award on sustainable development news, awarded in Costa Rica by the University of Navarra (Spain), the University of Valencia (Spain), the Latina University (Costa Rica) and the Earth Council (international non-profit organization).