Peter Gross is professor emeritus and former Director of the University of Tennessee’s School of Journalism and Electronic Media (2006-2016). Before his tenure at UT, he held the Gaylord Family Endowed Chair at the University of Oklahoma, Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication. His research focus is East and Central Europe society, media and journalism.
Multilingual, Gross lectured at the University of Dortmund (Germany); Oxford University (England); Vytautas Magnus University (Lithuania); the universities of Madrid, Bilbao, Santiago de Compostela, Murcia, and Barcelona (Spain); University of Tirana (Albania); Jagiellonian University (Poland); University of Bucharest, University of Timisoara West, Babes-Bolyai University (Romania); Central European University (Hungary); International Summer School for Democracy (Montenegro); University of Salzburg (Austria); and Shanghai University (China).
In 1992, he helped establish a journalism program at the University of Timisoara West (Romania). He completed assessment assignments for the U.S. Information Agency/U.S. Department of State and Voice of America, and conducted USIA, Academy for Educational Development, and Eurasia Foundation-sponsored training for East, Central and Southeast European and Central Asian journalists.
He frequently lectured at the U.S. Department of State's National Foreign Affairs Training Center and served as consultant to the International Media Fund, The Freedom Forum, the Eurasia Foundation, and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. In 1998, the U.S. Department of State gave Gross the Secretary's Open Forum Distinguished Public Service Award.
Since he finished his Ph.D. (University of Iowa, 1984), Gross received research, lecture and training awards and grants from, among other institutions, the National Academy of Sciences; International Research and Exchanges Board; Open Society Forum; International Media Fund; German Marshall Fund of the U.S.; Freedom Forum; Fulbright Program; National Science Foundation; and Harvard University's Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy. In 1996, he was a research fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, D.C.
He authored/co-authored seven books and two textbooks, and co-edited two book collections, among them, Entangled Evolutions. Media and Democratization in Eastern Europe. (The Johns Hopkins University Press/
Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2002); Giant With Feet of Clay. The Post-Communist Romanian Press (Polirom – Romania, 1999); with Mihai Coman, Media and Journalism in Romania (Vistas Verlag - Germany, 2006); and with Karol Jakubowicz, eds., Media Transformations in the Post-Communist World: Eastern Europe’s Tortured Path to Change (Lexington Books, 2013). Over 200 of his chapters and articles appeared in books, academic, professional, as well as general circulation media published in the U.S. and Europe (e.g. Georgetown Journal on Foreign Affairs, International Journal of Press/Politics, European Journal of Communication, East European Politics and Society, Media, Culture and Society, Political Communication and Persuasion, Social Europe - England, Revista 22 - Romania, Media Perspektiven - Germany, Los Angeles Times, Christian Science Monitor, Columbia Journalism Review). A columnist for Transitions Online, (Czech-based journal on East and Central European politics, economics, society, culture and media), in September 2019 he was named co-editor of the Journal for Romanian Studies, 2020-2023.
In 2009, the State of Romania awarded Gross the “Order of Merit in Education,” Commander Grade conferred by decree by the country’s president for “unusual merit in…education…and in research.” In Romania, the University of Bucharest awarded him the Doctor Honoris Causa (2005), as did the University of Timisoara West (2009). The Babes-Bolyai University gave him the Professor Honoris Causa (2018).
He serves/ed on the editorial boards of 15 American, British, Hungarian, Romanian and Spanish academic journals. Among a number of other functions, he serves/served as Ratings Review Advisor for the Freedom House's Freedom of the Press Index; and Grant Proposal Reviewer for the American Council of Learned Societies, Fulbright Awards Program (Romania), Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education’s National Science Center, and the Republic of Kazakhstan Ministry of Education and Science’s National Center of Science and Technology.
Gross is/was a member of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication and its International Division’s Chair of Teaching Standards, Markham International Student Paper Competition, and Professional Freedom and Responsibility. He is/was a member of the European Communication Research and Education Association; European Network for Trans-Integration Research; South East European Studies Association; Society for Romanian Studies; Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies; COST A30 (EU-sponsored research group); and International Communication Association. He was Vice President (1997-2001) and member of the Board of Directors, the American-Romanian Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Peter Gross, The mis-adventures of media and journalism in East and Central Europe. A collection (in Romanian). Timisoara, Romania: Editura Universitatii de Vest, Summer 2019. ISBN 978 973 125 642 9, 111 pgs.
Peter Gross, “Journalism and Transitions to Democracy in Former Communist States,” Thomas Hanitzsch and Karin Wahl-Jorgensen, eds., Handbook of Journalism Studies, 2nd Edition, Chapter 33, 522-537. New York, NY: Routledge/ICA, 2019.
Peter Gross, “On the frontiers of the unknown: Kazakh media seeking purpose, freedom, and the opportunity to matter,” Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, Fall 2019, Vol. XX: 187-194.
(Keynote addresses/paper/panel presentations)
"Europe’s public sphere and the European elections: Changing Media and political communication?" keynote address at the “2019 European Elections - Banalization or creativity of political communication?” Conference in Comparative Political Communication (l'Université Paris Est – UPEC), Nice, France, July 1-2, 2019.-2, 2019.