Speaker BIO

Bolt is Editor-in-Chief of Defence Strategic Communications, the peer reviewed academic journal of NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, and chief academic advisor to NATO COE’s Terminology Working Group. He is a Visiting Professor at Tokyo College, University of Tokyo, and Senior Fellow at SCERU, University of Tokyo, and a Visiting Scholar at St Edmund’s College, University of Cambridge. He created and directed the King’s Centre for Strategic Communications (KCSC) which became a leading global centre of expertise in strategic communications (2015-23). He was Reader in Strategic Communications and Convenor of the Masters in Strategic Communications in the Department of War Studies, King’s College London where he was a faculty member (2006-23). He convened the Masters course in Evolution of Insurgency and Counterinsurgency and the International Relations course Transnational Movements, Networks & Revolutionary Strategy. He still supervises the King’s Strategic Communications PhD programme: research topics including empathy in international negotiations; trust in the revolutionary theatre; counter-conduct & democratic dissent; materiality of communication in urban space; Cold War metaphor of containment; strategic communications policies in Afghanistan; phenomenology of the information environment; jazz diplomacy in the Cold War; political memory-building in Latvian independence; influence networks in South Caucasus; Brazil’s Amazonia dilemma. He was the Teaching Excellence Award Winner 2017. Much of his career was spent as a television journalist and producer-director at the BBC, ITV, and CBC (Canada). Working in news and current affairs, he specialised as a producer of war zone documentaries, covering conflicts in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and Indian subcontinent. Later he created strategic communications campaigns for Britain’s Labour Party; Amnesty International; the African National Congress (ANC)/Anti-Apartheid Movement. He served too as communications advisor to UEFA Champions League football. His book The Violent Image: Insurgent Propaganda and the New Revolutionaries (Columbia UP) was published in 2012, 2nd revised edition, 2020 (Oxford UP), winning the CHOICE ‘outstanding academic status award’. His Unmapping the 21st Century: Between Networks and the State (Bristol UP) was published in 2022. He is writing Strategic Communications: Information, Disinformation & The Human Condition; also Looking Over the Horizon, Strategic Communications in Liberal Democracies; and will publish a volume of field-defining articles from Defence Strategic Communications journal in 2024.