Professor Dr Mark Wheeler

As a Professor of Political Communications, Mark has led high-quality research, teaching and learning programmes. Accordingly, Mark has strategised appropriate research, pedagogical and management skills to enhance the School and the University’s international profile.

Photo of Mark Wheeler, Professor of Political Communications

Mark Wheeler

Mark's research interests include:

  • the political economy of the global mass media
  • policy reforms to media systems within Britain and the European Union
  • the political relations between Hollywood and Washington
  • the rise of celebrity politics and social media

Mark received his doctorate entitled The Reform of British Television post-Peacock: A Policy Study from Queen Mary College, the University of London in 1994.

Mark has been a Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics Media and Communications Department and a Research Officer for the British Screen Advisory Council.

Mark has taught on modules and contributed to curriculum design at the undergraduate and postgraduate level concerning:
  • political communication and public relations
  • the politics and culture of Hollywood
  • media and culture
  • public diplomacy
  • the globalisation of the mass media
In this respect, Mark has designed modules which deal with contemporaneous concerns about the media and multi-media communication and marketing of political ideas, the political economy of the cultural industries, celebrity diplomacy and the rise of the social media. Within these modules, Mark has developed content to reflect upon the expanding role of the media in modern politics, corporate and social affairs.


  • Politics and the Mass Media, (Oxford: Blackwells, 1997)
  • Co-author with Jeanette Steemers and Petros Iosifidis, European Television Industries, (London: British Film Institute, 2005)
  • Hollywood: Politics and Society, (London: British Film Institute, 2006).
  • Celebrity Politics: Image and Identity in Contemporary Political Communications, (Cambridge: Polity 2013)
  • Co-author with Petros Iosifidis, Public Spheres and Mediated Social Networks: The Western Context and Beyond, (Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2016)
  • William Friedkin's Sorcerer: A Convoy of Fear, (Lanham, Maryland: Lexington Books, Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, 2021) (forthcoming)

Journal articles

  • (With Raymond Kuhn) ‘The Future of the BBC Revisited’, The Political Quarterly, (Vol. 65, No.4, October-December 1994), pp. 432-440
  • ‘Democracy and the Information Superhighway’, Vicky Randall (ed), Democratization and the Media, Special Edition of Democratization, (London: Frank Cass, Summer 1998), pp. 217-239
  • ‘High-Tech Politics: The Impact of Information Communication Technologies in the Labour Party’s 1997 Campaign’, Convergence, (Luton: University of Luton Press, Volume 4, No.4, Winter 1998), pp. 42-58
  • ‘Research Note: The ‘Undeclared war’ part II: the European Union’s (EU) consultation process for the new round of the General Agreement on Trading Services/ World Trade Organisation on audio-visual services’, European Journal of Communication, (London: Sage Publications, Volume 15, No.2, Summer 2000), pp. 253-262.
  • ‘Globalization of the Communications Marketplace’, Harvard International Journal of Press/Politics, (Cambridge Mass: MIT Press, Volume 5, No.3, Summer 2000) pp. 27-44
  • ‘Regulating Communications: British Public Policy Responses to Convergence within the Digital Age’, Canadian Journal of Communication, (Canadian Journal of Communication Corporation, Volume 26, No.1, Winter 2001), pp.119-129
  • ‘Regulating Communications in the UK: A New Future’, Convergence, (Luton: University of Luton Press, Volume 7, No.3, Autumn 2001), pp. 28-35
  • ‘Tuning into the New Economy: The European Union’s Competition policy in a converging communications environment’, Convergence, (Luton: University of Luton Press, Volume 8, No.3, Autumn 2002), pp. 98-116
  • ‘Supranational regulation: Television and the European Union’, European Journal of Communication, (London: Sage Publications, Volume 19, No.3, Autumn, 2004), pp. 349-369. (Translated into Chinese)
  • ‘Whither cultural diversity: the European union’s market vision for the review of Television without Frontiers Directive’ in Katherine Sarikakis (ed) Special issue Media and Cultural policy in the European Union, The Journal of European Studies: An Interdisciplinary Series in European Culture, History and Politics, (Netherlands: Rodopi, 2007), pp. 227-249
  • ‘Celebrity Diplomacy: UN Goodwill Ambassadors and Messengers of Peace’ in Jo Littler (ed), Celebrity Studies: Special Edition on Celebrity and the Global, (London: Routledge, 2011)
  • 'Celebrity Forum: 2010 Television Prime Minister debates’, Celebrity Studies (London: Routledge, 2011)
  • ‘The Democratic worth of Celebrity Politics in an era of Late Modernity’, British Journal of Politics and International Relations: Celebrity Politics special edition, (John Wiley-Blackwell, 2012)
  • ‘European Union State Aid, public subsidies and analogue switch-off/digital switchover’, International Journal of Digital Television, (Bristol: Intellect, 2012)
  • ‘A City Upon a Hill’: The Wire and its distillation of the United States polity’, Politics (Political Studies Association, 2014)
  • ‘The Mediatization of Celebrity Politics through the Social Media’, International Journal of Digital Television, (Bristol: Intellect, 2014)
  • (With Petros Iosifidis), The Public Sphere and Network Democracy: Social movements and Political Change?, Global Media Journal (Open Access, 2015)
  • (with Hugo Dobson, Andrew Cooper), ‘Introduction to non-western Celebrity Politicians’, Celebrity Studies, (London, Routledge 2017)
  • (with Duygu Karatus) ‘Introduction’. Editor of Special Edition ‘The Public Sphere and the Social Media.’ , International Journal of Digital Television, (Bristol: Intellect, 2017)
  • (with Petros Iosifidis), ‘Modern Political Communication and Web 2.0 in Representative Democracies’, Javnost: The Public – 25th anniversary issue, Vol. 25 (2018), no. 1-2.
  • “Celebrity Politics and Cultural Studies within the United States and United Kingdom.” In Encyclopedia of Communication and Critical Studies (Oxford University Press, 2018).(

Chapters in books

  • ‘Multi-Mediatization and Citizens’ Rights’, Jo Langham Brown (ed) etc, Tune In or Buy-In, (Luton: University of Luton Press, 1997)
  • ‘The Web Wars: the European Commission and British Governments’ response to the Internet’ in Rachel Gibson and Stephen J Ward (eds), Reinvigorating Government: Politics and the Internet, (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2000)
  • ‘The Coverage of Political affairs: the Weapons of Mass Destruction Debate, the Kelly Affair and the Hutton Inquiry’ in Alastair McGown (ed), British Television Handbook 2005, (London: British Film Institute, 2004)
  • ‘UK Perspectives: A ‘Third Way’ in British Communications Policy? in Marie-Françoise Labouz and Mark Wise (ed), La Diversité Culturelle en Question(s) Cultural Diversity in Question(s) (Brussels: Editions Bruylant, 2005)
  • ‘Supranational Regulation: The EU Competition Directorate and the European Audiovisual Marketplace’ in Bridgette Wessels and Jackie Harrison (eds) Mediating Europe: New Media, Mass Communications and the European Public Sphere, (Oxford, New York: Berghahn Books, 2009)
  • ‘The European Union’s Competition Directorate: State Aids and Public Service Broadcasting' in Petros Iosifidis (ed), Public Service Media: Facing Up to the Digital Challenges, (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010)
  • ‘Celebrity Politics and Cultural Citizenship: UN Goodwill Ambassadors and Messenger of Peace’ in Asteris Huliaras, Liza Tsaliki and Christos A Frangonikolopoulos (eds), Transnational Celebrity Activism in Global Politics Changing the World? (Intellect, 2011)
  • ‘Darryl F Zanuck’s Wilson’ in Iwan Morgan (ed), US Presidencies at the Movies (Palgrave, 2011)
  • ‘Bill Clinton: courting the Hollywood film industry’ in Mark White (ed) The Presidency of Bill Clinton: The Legacy of a New Domestic and Foreign Policy (I B Taurus, 2012)
  • ‘Digital Switchover: European Union State Aid, public subsidies and enlargement’ in Hilde van den Bulck Manuel Puppis, Seamus Simpson (eds), European Media Policy for the Twenty-First Century: Assessing the Past, Setting Agendas for the Future (Routledge, 2016)
  • ‘Celebrity Diplomacy: Theories and Practices’ in The Sage Handbook of Diplomacy (eds Costas M Constantinou, Paul Sharp, Pauline Kerr) (Sage Publications, 2016)
  • ‘The political history of Classical Hollywood: moguls, liberals and radicals’ in US Movies and the Great Depression (eds Professor Iwan Morgan and Professor Philip Davies) (Edinburgh University Press, 2016)
  • ‘Human Rights, Celebrity and Democracy’ in Anthony Elliot (ed), The Routledge Handbook of Celebrity Studies (Routledge, 2017)

Expert commentary

Media appearances

Interviewed on BBC and LBC concerning celebrity politics and several newspapers including The Times.

Conference papers

  • Presented a paper ‘Celebrity and Diplomacy: Theories and Practices’ at International Symposium on Sustainability and the Celebrity Business-Development Nexus, Copenhagen Business School, 9 May 2014 and at the International Studies Association (ISA), Atlanta, 17 March 2016.
  • Presented a paper entitled ‘The mediatization of celebrity politics through social media’ at UEA PSI Research Seminar, 21 January 2015 and at ECPR Workshops, University of Warsaw, April 2015.
  • Co-presented paper (with Petros Iosifidis), The Public Sphere and Network Democracy: Social Movements and Political Change? University of Sassini, Alghero, Sardinia, June 2015
  • Presented a paper entitled ‘Celebrity Endorsements and Commentaries in the 2015 UK General Election campaign’ at Media and Politics Conference, University of Chester, 5 November 2015.
  • Presented a paper entitled ‘Celebrity 'Outsider' Politicians in the digital realm: Donald Trump’ at Palmerston Politics Society, St John’s College, Cambridge, 29 February 2016, University College London roundtable on populism, news and information society, 8 March 2017, Keynote PSA Media and Politics Group, University of Hull, 16-17 November, 2017, #LeaderImage Session, Association of Art History Conference, Courthauld Gallery/Kings College, University of London, 5 April 2018, and Celebrity Studies Conference, University of Rome, Sapienza, 26-28 June 2018.

    Presented a paper entitled ‘Human Rights, Democracy and Celebrity’ at the International Studies Association, Atlanta, 17 March 2016, the American Association of Geographer, San Francisco, 31 March, 2016, the Everyday Human Rights, Conference, London School of Economics, 14-15 April, 2016 and the Celebrity Studies Conference, University of Amsterdam, 28-30 June 2016.
  • Co-organiser and paper presenter of ‘Trump, Brexit, Corbyn and the Social Media’ Political Studies Association Media and Politics Group Conference, City, University of London, 4 May 2018.
  • To present a paper entitled ‘Celebrity Politics in the Fake News Age’ at the Politics of (Post) Truth Conference, Cumberland Lodge, 7-8 October 2018.
  • To present a paper entitled ‘‘Ohhhh, Je-re-my Corrr-byn’ to the tune of ‘The Seven Nations Army’ – the ‘uncelebrity’ celebrity politician.’ At PSA Media and Politics Group, University of Nottingham, 8-9 November 2018.

Professor Dr Mark Wheeler
Professor of Political Communications, Politics and International Relations