About this Research Topic
Speech communication is not only (perhaps not even primarily) about exchanging propositions. Rather, it is a social action, and this fact shapes the nature of the activity and its effects. People talk to each other to express their emotions, to share their ideas with others and, ultimately, to influence their listeners' thoughts, decisions, and behavior. Of course, the corresponding speech signals also involve words. However, there is a growing body of evidence suggesting that it is actually body language and prosody (i.e. the complex interplay of melody, stress, loudness, rhythm, and voice quality) that literally set the agenda in effective and attractive communication. Our Research Topic builds on the growing importance and understanding of these nonverbal signals in interdisciplinary research, as well as on the insight that voice and body language are similar to words insofar as they can also be analyzed in syntagmatic units with context-specific meanings and functions. Moreover, these units and their meanings and functions are closely interwoven with displaying, constructing, and perceiving gender and gender identity, both of which are among the fundamental driving and restraining forces behind the production of effective and attractive communication signals (cf. research on sexual politics, gendering of speech acts, and speech convergence in romantic and other relationships).
Effective and attractive communication signals play a role in charisma and persuasion, public speaking and rhetoric, emotions and attitudes, speech convergence and speech evaluation, gender and cultural identity, leadership and social hierarchies, as well as in education, speech technology, and persuasive technology. The diversity of these fields is reflected in the strongly interdisciplinary nature of the R&D activities on effective and attractive signals; and one discipline often does not know what the other is doing. For instance, in research on charisma, linguistic and phonetic studies hardly ever refer to studies in psychology and management and vice versa. Thus, the goal of our Research Topic is to build a sustainable bridge between the various disciplines working on effective and attractive communication signals, to initiate a network for knowledge and method exchange, and to generate transdisciplinary synergy effects that range from mutual inspiration to joint R&D activities.
In accordance with this idea, our team of topic editors consists of experts in the areas of speech (acoustics) and perception (Niebuhr), social psychology of persuasive multimodal processes (D'Errico), leadership and leadership development (Schmid), computer science and cognitive systems (Esposito), as well as innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurship (Brem).
We welcome all submissions -- whether theory-, application-, or technology-oriented -- that help deepen and enrich our knowledge about what makes a speaker attractive and/or effective in all the social, cultural, and business contexts that shape our private and professional lives. Moreover, we are interested in submissions that address the role of the listener/audience or deal with the question of how attractive and effective communication signals can be measured, assessed, and learned. Authors are encouraged to work together in interdisciplinary teams. However, submissions to be considered for publication should at least include interdisciplinary references in their research overview. The use (and possibly the explanation) of interdisciplinary methods is also a plus.
**Topic Editor Oliver Niebuhr is the founder and CEO of AllGoodSpeakers ApS. The other Topic Editors declare no competing interests with regard to the Research Topic subject.**
Keywords: persuasion, charisma, speech, public speaking, leadership, management, speech technology, voice, body language, rhetoric, speaker training, persuasive technologies.
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.