University of Southern California

About USC

Ernest J. Wilson III

Ernest James Wilson III was appointed dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and holder of the Walter H. Annenberg Chair in Communication in July 2007. He is also a professor of political science, a faculty fellow at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy, a member of the board of the Pacific Council on International Policy, and a member of the National Academies’ Computer Science and Telecommunications Board.

Wilson’s experience at the intersection of communication and public policy spans the private and public sectors. He has served as a consultant to the World Bank and the United Nations, led research centers and academic departments at premier institutions of higher education such as the University of Michigan and the University of Pennsylvania, and worked in government at the White House National Security Council and the U.S. Information Agency. He also advised President Obama’s transition team on matters of communication technology and public diplomacy.

Nominated by President Clinton in 2000, Wilson served on the board of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting from 2000 to 2010, the last year as chairman. He is a member of the Carnegie-Knight Commission on the Future of Journalism Education and the National Academies Board on Research Data and Information.

Wilson’s academic focus is the convergence of communication and information technology, public policy, and the public interest. His current work concentrates on China-Africa relations, global sustainable innovation in high-technology industries, and the role of politics in the diffusion of information and communication technologies.

In addition to his most recent books – Governing Global Electronic Networks and Negotiating the Net: The Politics of Internet Diffusion in Africa – Wilson co-edits the MIT Press series The Information Revolution and Global Politics and the journal Information Technologies and International Development.

Wilson is the recipient of numerous research fellowships and awards, including the Distinguished Scholar Award from the International Communication section of the ISA, an International Affairs Fellowship from the Council on Foreign Relations and a postdoctoral fellowship at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Wilson holds a Ph.D. and an M.A. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley, and a B.A. from Harvard College.

Last Updated: 12/20/11