Typologies of communicators in Europe

Bettina Beurer‐Züllig (Institute for Media and Communications Management, University of St Gallen, St Gallen, Switzerland)
Christian Fieseler (Institute for Media and Communications Management, University of St Gallen, St Gallen, Switzerland)
Miriam Meckel (Institute for Media and Communications Management, University of St Gallen, St Gallen, Switzerland)

Corporate Communications: An International Journal

ISSN: 1356-3289

Publication date: 8 May 2009



The purpose of this paper is to present the findings of a quantitative investigation into the major working fields of European communication professionals.


The paper build upon previous work done in roles research, but follow a grounded approach in using an explorative cluster analysis on a sample of 1,410 communicators from 30 different European countries.


The paper identifies five typologies into which the working fields of European communication practitioners can be categorized: negotiators, brand officers, policy advisors, internal communicators, and press agents. These clusters are distinctively different in terms of education, salary, and career, as well as job satisfaction.

Research limitations/implications

This paper is focused on the typologies of the European communication profession, whereas differences regarding the cultural or national context of the communication profession as well as the particularities of the respective media systems are not discussed.

Practical implications

Following the five clusters, the research maps the field of professional communication on a European level and shows the various roles communication practitioners take, as well as their integration within organizations.


The study elicits on the state of the communication profession in Europe and brings forth five different roles communication professionals exert. In line with Dozier's and Broom's manager technician dichotomy the paper identifies two manager and three technician roles, whereas the technical activities to a small extent also contain some policy elements.



Beurer‐Züllig, B., Fieseler, C. and Meckel, M. (2009), "Typologies of communicators in Europe", Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 158-175. https://doi.org/10.1108/13563280910953843

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