Biography

Jonathan Matusitz (Ph.D., University of Oklahoma, 2006) is currently a tenured associate professor in the Nicholson School of Communication and Media. His research focuses on the role of communication in terrorism, symbolism in terrorism, the globalization of culture, and health communication. His research methodologies include qualitative interviewing, content analysis, semiotics, and theoretical analysis.

On top of having more than 150 academic publications and over 170 conference presentations, he taught at a NATO-affiliated military base in Belgium in 2010. Originally from Belgium himself, he moved to the United States in 2000.

Dr. Matusitz has already published six academic books on terrorism: Terrorism & Communication: A Critical Introduction (Sage, 2013); Symbolism in Terrorism: Motivation, Communication, and Behavior (Rowman & Littlefield, 2015); Online Jihadist Magazines to Promote the Caliphate: Communicative Perspectives (Peter Lang, 2019); Global Jihad in Muslim and non-Muslim Contexts (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020); Female Terrorism in America: Past and Current Perspectives (Routledge, 2020); and Communication in Global Jihad (Routledge, 2021).

In 2011, Dr. Matusitz’s research was cited by the U.S. Supreme Court. Since 2014, he has collaborated with a representative of the Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO), Ministry of Defence, in India to examine suicide terrorism.

Occasionally, Dr. Matusitz is the featured speaker at law enforcement workshops and training sessions. He has delivered presentations on terrorism to agencies such as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Department of Homeland Security, the Transportation Security Administration, and local sheriff’s offices.

Since his tenure at UCF, Dr. Matusitz has received multiple faculty awards. In both 2012 and 2017, he was honored with a prestigious teaching award by the College of Sciences (COS). In 2014, he received a teaching award by the Nicholson School of Communication and Media: the “Excellence in Teaching Award for 2013-2014.” And in 2015 and 2019, he was the winner of the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award for COS.

Dr. Matusitz has taught the following courses at UCF: Terrorism and Communication (COM 4416), Symbolism in Terrorism (COM 6425), Communication Research Methods (COM 3311), Qualitative Research Methods in Communication (COM 6303), Intercultural Communication (COM 4461), Conflict Management (COM 4462), Group Dynamics (SPC 4426), Nonverbal Communication (SPC 4331), Organizational Communication (COM 3120), Communication and Human Relations (COM 3011), Health Communication (COM 6025), Honors Fundamentals of Oral Communication (SPC 1600), Fundamentals of Technical Presentations (SPC 1603), and Topics in Intercultural Communication (COM 4934).

Lastly, in addition to cooking, reading, watching movies and documentaries, listening to music, walking, and bicycling, Dr. Matusitz has developed a great passion for traveling. He has already visited 30 countries across four different continents. Of particular interest are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. He likes to visit landmarks or areas classified by UNESCO as having monumental significance from a cultural, historical, or scientific standpoint. Four of his favorite sites are Teotihuacán in Mexico, the Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea in Brazil, the Bom Jesus do Monte in Portugal, and the Royal Alcázar of Seville in Spain.

RESEARCH INTERESTS

  • Terrorism and communication
  • Symbolism in terrorism
  • Globalization of culture
  • Globalization of human communication processes
  • Healthcare and technology