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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2003

Mairead McCoy and Owen Hargie

This paper considers the implications of mass communications theory on public relations (PR) evaluation and briefly reviews mass communication effects, persuasion, and…

3308

Abstract

This paper considers the implications of mass communications theory on public relations (PR) evaluation and briefly reviews mass communication effects, persuasion, and cognition, attitude and behaviour change theories. The implications for evaluation are then examined. Reliance on domino models is shown to be too simplistic. It is suggested that claims of PR behavioural effects may be unrealistic and it is argued that more moderate and/or alternative goals are needed if preordained failure is to be avoided. Evaluation results must be interpreted cautiously so that further significance that is not supported by theory is not assumed. This paper shows how the concept of PR evaluation could be widened to include formative evaluation and broad environmental monitoring, which are especially important in identifying and understanding why and how communication works, what its effects are, what factors restrict or facilitate effectiveness and under what conditions success can be maximised.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 7 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 July 2012

Jim Macnamara

A number of scholars including Benno Signitzer and Jacquie L'Etang have proposed public diplomacy as an alternative model to describe and/or inform the practices of public…

2018

Abstract

Purpose

A number of scholars including Benno Signitzer and Jacquie L'Etang have proposed public diplomacy as an alternative model to describe and/or inform the practices of public relations. However, international relations and political science scholars claim major differences between public diplomacy and PR, and few studies have sought to reconcile these claims and counter‐claims. The purpose of this paper is to report a comparative analysis of key concepts and principles of public diplomacy.

Design/methodology/approach

This article reports a comparative analysis of key concepts and principles of public diplomacy and the “new diplomacy” as described by Shaun Riordan and public relations (PR) as defined in Excellence theory and other contemporary models of PR to identify commonalties as well as divergences, and discusses how these can inform PR theory and practice.

Findings

This analysis shows similarities between these fields of practice, as well as six unique concepts and principles of public diplomacy and “new diplomacy” that inform corporate diplomacy and organisational diplomacy as an alternative paradigm to “public relations”.

Practical implications

Reconceptualising PR as corporate and organisational diplomacy involves much more than a name change. It recasts PR within alternative theoretical frameworks that are significantly different to those of dominant paradigms of PR and informs new and refined approaches to practice.

Social implications

Adopting the concepts and principles of public diplomacy and “new diplomacy” also would provide a more ethical and societally‐orientated approach to PR.

Originality/value

Most studies comparing public diplomacy and PR have focussed on commonalities with a view to expanding PR's territorial claim or gaining validation of PR. This analysis takes the opposite approach, identifying concepts and principles of public diplomacy and “new diplomacy” that contribute to an alternative paradigm of PR that is more effective, more societally‐orientated, more ethical, and ultimately more publicly accepted.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 26 August 2016

Olaf Hoffjann and Philine Hachmeister

The distinction between external communication services and internal consulting services plays an important role in most public relations (PR) theories dealing with PR as…

Abstract

The distinction between external communication services and internal consulting services plays an important role in most public relations (PR) theories dealing with PR as an organisational function. In these theories, two perspectives are at the centre of discussion: either PR succeeds in changing the environment or the organisation has to adapt to it. This chapter suggests a descriptive approach. It analyses theoretically and empirically the question of how PR manages the difference between external communication and internal consulting. A theoretical framework based on systems theory is presented. Key aspects of the approach have been tested with a quantitative online survey among communication professionals in Germany.

Details

The Management Game of Communication
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-716-8

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 4 July 2020

Albert Anani-Bossman and Takalani Eric Mudzanani

The goal of the study is to develop an integrated, non-sequential framework for excellent public relations management for the financial services sector in Ghana. The study…

Abstract

Purpose

The goal of the study is to develop an integrated, non-sequential framework for excellent public relations management for the financial services sector in Ghana. The study empirically analyzes how PR is conceptualized and practiced in relation to the purpose (models) and roles (activities).

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted the qualitative in-depth interview approach to gauge the views of 22 PR practitioners.

Findings

Practitioners of most communication departments have no PR background, and this influenced their conceptualization of PR. Essentially, PR in Ghana is shaped, to a large extent, by a western ideology. PR is however influenced greatly by strong interpersonal relationships, which is premised largely on the culture of the country. What is obvious is that PR in the financial services sector is not fully strategic. Although practitioners occupy managerial roles, they are limited in their ability to make impact due a lack of understanding by management about the purpose of PR and budgetary constraints.

Research limitations/implications

The use of a qualitative approach means the result cannot be generalized. As the study focussed on one sector, it will be essential to look at other sectors using a generalized sample.

Originality/value

The study developed an integrative non-sequential PR framework based on literature and empirical findings. The framework differs in certain aspects from some of the recommendations made by literature for an excellent PR practice.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 2016

Gareth Thompson

The purpose of this paper is to consider the relevance of the institutional analysis and development (IAD) framework (Ostrom, 1990) in understanding the incentives for…

1139

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to consider the relevance of the institutional analysis and development (IAD) framework (Ostrom, 1990) in understanding the incentives for public relations (PR) practitioners’ interactions with Wikipedia, and other common-pool media.

Design/methodology/approach

This interdisciplinary conceptual paper applies the economics theory of commons governance to two case studies of PR interactions with Wikipedia.

Findings

The analysis concludes that commons governance theory identifies the downside risks of opportunistic behaviour by PR practitioners in their interactions with media commons such as Wikipedia. The paper concludes that Ostrom’s IAD model is relevant to the governance of PR interactions and offers guidance on productive PR practice in common-pool media.

Research limitations/implications

The analysis was applied to only two cases for which information was widely available.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications for the scope of PR practice in its interactions with common-pool media. The economic value of information held by PR professionals has been undermined by the collaborative nature of common-pool media, which has consequences for the role of PR.

Originality/value

The paper introduces an economic theory and related literature to PR scholarship and applies them to PR practice. The paper aims to stimulate further research into the application of economic ideas to PR practice and to encourage discussion on the place of economic theory in PR knowledge.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 30 September 2014

Graeme William Domm

The purpose of this paper is to explore the practices and outlooks of public relations (PR) and corporate communication practitioners in six countries of South East Asia…

1905

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the practices and outlooks of public relations (PR) and corporate communication practitioners in six countries of South East Asia, through the eyes of practitioners themselves.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper draws on the findings of a doctoral research project comprising an online questionnaire sent to 100 active PR and corporate communication practitioners in six countries of South East Asia, attracting 30 responses; and a subsequent series of 14 semi-structured, in-depth face-to-face interviews. While taking some account of a range of theories in formulating questions, the research is primarily inductive in nature, seeking to reveal self-perceptions of the working worlds, worldviews, values and concerns of practitioners themselves.

Findings

The project confirms, in the South East Asian context, hypotheses previously advanced by researchers including Sriramesh (2004), Sriramesh and Vercic (2001), Bardhan (2011) and others which assert that distinctive worldviews and local and regional cultures can be significant considerations in understanding the ways that communication strategies are developed and applied in different geographical locations. Going further, the research confirms that local practitioners see other environmental variables including differences in infrastructure, the composition of local languages and a range of other factors which go beyond “attitudes” and “values” as having important impacts as well, and therefore being worthy of more detailed attention by international communication planners and scholars.

Research limitations/implications

The research has implications for practitioners seeking to develop effective communication strategies in South East Asian environments. For scholars, the research has implications for better understanding of the significance of a range of environmental variables which may impact the effectiveness of professional practice in the region but which as yet may not be sufficiently recognised by existing theory and case studies. The project has a small sample size, with respondents drawn primarily from the membership of two English-speaking international professional associations. All research was also conducted in English. It may therefore not be fully representative of all practitioners across the region.

Practical implications

The findings draw attention to ways that communication strategies might be more successfully developed and applied in particular Association of South East Asian Nations countries, and how professional practice in this region can help to better inform the development of more inclusive, comprehensive and critical “international” PR theory, curriculum and pedagogy.

Social implications

The research has social implications in regard to promoting better understanding of the outlooks and influences upon a group of professional people who arguably enjoy disproportionate influence upon the communities and societies in which they operate, by virtue of the work they undertake to explain, persuade and build relationships on behalf of other influential parties.

Originality/value

This is the first research project providing extensive first-hand simultaneous insights into the working worlds and personal outlooks of a broad cross-section of corporate communication practitioners across a number of major countries of South East Asia, embracing a comprehensive range of discussion topics.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 7 November 2017

Donnalyn Pompper

The time is right for renewed and updated attention to the relationship between public relations (PR) and human resources (HR) departments in the context of corporate…

Abstract

The time is right for renewed and updated attention to the relationship between public relations (PR) and human resources (HR) departments in the context of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability. For too long, conflict between the two practice areas has obscured opportunities for collaboration which benefits organizations and stakeholders. This chapter offers theoretical underpinnings for examining an interdepartmental, cross-unit working relationship between HR and PR – and advances a vision for why it is needed now.

Details

Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainability, and Ethical Public Relations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-585-6

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 August 2011

Oliver Raaz and Stefan Wehmeier

This paper seeks to compare different national PR histories in order to unfold the degree of abstract reflection in PR history writing. It aims to provide some suggestions…

3104

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to compare different national PR histories in order to unfold the degree of abstract reflection in PR history writing. It aims to provide some suggestions for a future PR historiography, based on this comparison.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper compares British, German, and US American PR historiography. The study is based on a comparison of 36 PR histories. A triple matrix of theoretization is used in order to differentiate the histories.

Findings

Within the comparison American PR historiography accounts for 24 public relations history approaches, whereas Great Britain (1) and Germany (11) offer fewer histories. However, this richness in quantity does not lead to theoretical diversification. Owing to the paradigmatic obligation to a progressivist understanding, American PR historiography actually entails only one theoretic approach, while its German equivalent includes three different theoretic approaches and British PR historiography – being at its start – at least contains one explicitly non‐progressivist, methodologically well‐informed, fact‐oriented example. Paradoxically, the prevailing American PR historiography, on the one hand, conceptualizes PR as a modern phenomenon but, on the other hand, claims even ancient beginnings.

Research limitations/implications

The corpus of analysis contains only studies that attempt to supply an encompassing overview of (national) PR history.

Practical implications

Public relations managers may use these findings to achieve a more nuanced critical understanding of the history of their occupation, and thereby reflect on its current state, which may lead to intensified ethical endeavours.

Originality/value

The paper presents a pioneer systematic comparison of the three national PR histories, which may lead to enhanced national and general PR historiography. Another value is the establishment of a theoretically informed comparative measuring instrument, which (in future) can also be applied in order to compare and improve other national PR historiographies.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 30 January 2009

Veronica Diaz, Russell Abratt, Ruth Clarke and Mike Bendixen

The purpose of this paper is to report on the degree of success in international assignments that public relations (PR) practitioners experience and explores the influence…

2469

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report on the degree of success in international assignments that public relations (PR) practitioners experience and explores the influence of both organizational culture and national culture.

Design/methodology/approach

PR practitioners in the USA and South Africa were surveyed.

Findings

Results show that there is no difference between PR practitioners from the USA and South Africa with experience in international assignments, in terms of degree of success in international assignments and of level of preparedness for international assignments. It was also found that there is no significant correlation between national culture or organizational culture and the degree of success in international assignments for those respondents with international experience.

Research limitations/implications

The response rate was limited and therefore the results cannot be generalized. Future research would be to further extend this study to include additional countries.

Practical implications

The results support the concept that a PR practitioner with an organic organizational culture and a long‐term orientation of national culture will be better prepared to engage in international assignments than a practitioner with a mechanistic organizational culture and a short‐term orientation of national culture.

Originality/value

This study adds to the literature on international PR practice, and compares the practice in a developing economy, South Africa, to a developed economy, the USA.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 14 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 11 October 2017

Adrian Crookes

In the context of debates about the performance of Higher Education (HE) in which quantitative measures proliferate, this chapter reports the top line observations of an…

Abstract

In the context of debates about the performance of Higher Education (HE) in which quantitative measures proliferate, this chapter reports the top line observations of an initial exploration of the preparedness for practice of recent graduates of a Public Relations (PR) course at a post-1992 United Kingdom (UK) Higher Education Institution (HEI). Preparedness for practice is chosen as a conceptual lens (as preparedness for the uncertainty of practice) because HEIs frequently promise it. Using a Bourdieusian framework, preparedness is considered in relation to habitus-field match and HE performance as capital-added in habitus transformation. The chapter offers a complementary way of considering the dynamic between educator and recent graduate agency and how that might be applied when studying course and student performance, designing curricula and developing appropriate ‘signature pedagogies’, especially for those HE actors tasked with delivering against the ‘promise’ of graduate preparedness. In considering preparedness for practice as a performative function of HE, the chapter is located in wider societal debates about the ‘worth’ of HE and offers insight for educators of future PR practitioners.

Details

How Strategic Communication Shapes Value and Innovation in Society
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-716-4

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 9000