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WIU Assistant Professor Chris Carpenter
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Carpenter Chosen to Deliver Annual Thompson Lecture Oct. 22, 23

October 4, 2013

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MACOMB, IL – The Western Illinois University Department of Communication has chosen WIU Assistant Professor Chris Carpenter to deliver the 24th annual Wayne N. Thompson Lecture Tuesday-Wednesday, Oct. 22-23.

The lecture, "How to Harness the Power of Influential People in a Word-of-Mouth Campaign," begins at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 22 in room 111 of the Quad Cities Riverfront Campus and at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23 in the Sandburg Theatre of the University Union on the Macomb campus.

Carpenter said his lecture will include research he has conducted to recruit "superdiffusers."

"Superdiffusers are people who are well connected, persuasive and perceived as experts in a particular area by people they know," he said. "A survey has been developed to identify people with these traits so they can be recruited for word-of-mouth campaigns. My research was done to establish that these scales do identify these traits and that recruiting superdiffusers can enhance the success of a campaign in any context."

Carpenter has published many articles on social influence and his work on online social networking has garnered worldwide media attention.

The lecture is named to honor WIU alumnus Wayne Thompson, who was a former professor of speech communication. An endowment in his name helps sponsor a number of departmental programs to enhance learning and scholarship in the field of communication, including the annual Thompson Lecture by a prominent scholar in the field.

The lecture is open free to the public. For more information, contact Western's Department of Communication at (309) 298-1507.

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