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Challenging disciplinary borders of PR to foster global communication PowerPoint Presentation
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Challenging disciplinary borders of PR to foster global communication

Challenging disciplinary borders of PR to foster global communication

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Challenging disciplinary borders of PR to foster global communication

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  1. Challenging disciplinary borders of PRto foster global communication Professor Jim MacnamaraPhD, FPRIA, FAMI, CPM, FAMEC Deputy Dean & Professor of Public Communication Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences University of Technology Sydney

  2. Communication without borders? The technologies of globalisation The discourses of globalisation

  3. Introduction • A conceptual critical paper • Written to stimulate debate by providing a counterpoint to the theme ‘Communication without borders’ • Methodology • Draws on two PR history studies and an empirical analysis or PR scholarship • History of PR in Australia (Macnamara & Crawford 2010; Crawford & Macnamara 2011) • History of PR publishing in Australia (Johnston & Macnamara 2012, 2013) • Content analysis of 20 PR texts and reference books (Macnamara 2010, 2012a) • Critical analysis

  4. PR – theoretically • Dominant paradigm of Excellence theory • Arising from the Four Models • Grounded in systems theory and behaviourism • Organisation-centric and functionalist • Expandingtheory – rhetorical, dialogic, cultural economic, feminist, postmodern, etc • ‘Sociocultural turn’ in PR (Edwards & Hodges 2011) • Shift of focus to sociology of PR, societal interests • PR as social and cultural practice • Critical perspectives (L’Etang 2008, 2011)

  5. PR in Australia – Historical orthodoxy • Invented by Americans and then exported elsewhere • Ivy Lee (1905) • Edward Bernays (1923) • Brought to Australia by Hollywood press agents in the 1930s and … • Gen Douglas MacArthur in 1942 (Zawawi 2009)

  6. PR in Australia – Australia Day (Macnamara & Crawford 2010; Crawford & Macnamara 2011) • 1838 – media publicity, information publications, posters, speeches, public events for anniversary celebration of White settlement • Sustained campaign over 75 years • Australian Natives Association (ANA) campaign from 1880s • Anglo-Saxon focus on celebration of White settlement • 1918 ANA called for a single national day celebrating White settlement • Australia Day established as 26 January in 1935 • (Sir) Asher Joel appointed by NSW Government in 1937 • Major PR campaign for 150th anniversary in 1938 • Joel went on to Australia Day Council Board and joint founder of the PRIA

  7. PR scholarly publishing • First Australian PR book –The Australian Public Relations Handbook, Thomas Dwyer, ed. (1961) • A practical handbook • First local PR textbook –Public Relations Practice in Australia, J.D.S. (David) Potts, ed. (1976) • Edited book • Chapters by leading practitioners – Asher Joel, Hal Myers, Laurie Kerr, Peter Golding and Eric White • Local PR handbooks in 1980s and 1990s • Macnamara (1983, 1984, 1992, 1996) • The Australian Public Relations Manual(Tymson & Sherman 1987) • First theory-based PR text – Public Relations: Theory and Practice (Johnston & Zawawi 2000)

  8. PR scholarly publishing – journals (Johnston & Macnamara 2012) Australian Journal of Communication(1975) Media International Australiaincorporating Culture and Policy Journal (1976) Asia Pacific Public Relations Journal (1999) PRism (2003) Public Communication Review (2010)

  9. Australian PR texts and reference books today (Macnamara 2012a, 2012b) • Content analysis of 20 widely used PR texts and reference books • As stocked in Cooperative Bookshops • Contemporary – published 2006–2011 • 8 x Australian/NZ authors; 12 international (US, UK, New Zealand) • Mix of functionalist and critical • 8,547 pages analysed • Coding scheme • 12 broad categories + several hundreds theories, concepts, models, etc • Theories and concepts list from Botan and Hazelton (2006), Heath (2005, 2010), Littlejohn and Foss, 2008; Srirameshand Verčič (2009)

  10. Coding categories

  11. Australian PR texts and reference books today

  12. Australian PR texts and reference books today

  13. Australian PR texts and reference books today * Excluding L’Etang (2008) and Curtin and Gaither (2007)

  14. What has happened? • Local histories and development of PR long before imported US practices or texts • PR hegemony during the second half of the 20th century • Seduced by dominant American functionalist models • Macro-level influence of neoliberal capitalism • Alternative and emergent theories and models little discussed “beyond the relatively sparsely populated enclaves inhabited by readers of scholarly journals and critical texts” (Macnamara 2012a, p. 373) • Need to “de-territorialize” and “re-territorialize” PR (Petelin 2005) • Develop multiliteraciesof PR • Cultural, linguistic and ideological diversity

  15. So where do we turn? Reconceptualizingstrategy Corporate and organizational diplomacy Escaping ethnocentrisms

  16. Strategy • Traditional notions are mostly organization-centric • Control, persuasion, organizational effectiveness • Landmark paper by Hallahan et al (2007) • ‘Strategic turn’ away from reductionist approaches (Falkheimer & Heide 2011; Torp 2011) • Dual purposes of communication (Deetz1992) • Participation and effectiveness • Network approach (Murphy 2011) • Emergent strategy (King 2010; Mintzberg 1988)

  17. The ‘new public diplomacy’ Public diplomacy widely discussed (in PR) Mainly to rationalise, justify and legitimize PR Closer look reveals lessons and ideas for PR

  18. (Macnamara 2012c)

  19. Asiacentricity, Afrocentricity, Transversality • Challenges Eurocentrism and Western centrism • Particularly US centrism • Asiacentricity not the same as Asiacentrism • Metatheoretical and methodological concept to de-Westernise theory and research • Does not replace one centrism with another, sees multiple knowledge sources • Humanity is “understood and deeply felt through cultural particularities, not through universal abstractions” or global discourses (Miike 2010) • Transversality involves constructing knowledge globally, rather than applying knowledge globally (HwaYol Yung 1995, 2004)

  20. Conclusions • PR evolved with localised histories, embedded in local social, cultural and political contexts • PR hegemony in the 20th century • Western centric, organisation-centric, functionalist • Need for multiliteraciesof PR • Break down disciplinary and ideological borders • Ideas and models available in the borderlands of PR and social science • Anthropology, cultural studies, media sociology, ‘new public diplomacy’, emergent business strategy