CO 350: Contemporary Perspectives in Public Relations: Blog Post 6: “Global Theory” of Public Relations

“Paradigms of Global Public Relations” (mycampus handout)

These questions are basically over pp. 1-3

  1. Explain this phrase: “global public relations should fall in the middle between standardization and individualization”

Answer: In the phrase “global public relations should fall in the middle between standardization and individualization” refers to the concept of acknowledging the roots and history of public relations in its roots, but to also refer to the idea of countries using their own demographics, history, and people to shape the profession into a profession that fits the confines of their societal culture.  The individualization of public relations of a country is important to the profession as it learns to embrace the differences found between each country; countries do not feel pressured to follow one standard.  Of course, global public relations does not want the country to become two individualistic in its public relations profession because it could then become out of sync with the rest of the world’s standards of public relations. 

 2. Is the global theory a normative theory? Explain

Answer: The global theory is a normative theory because, according to Grunig, the global theory is general enough that it can engage most of the world in general practices of public relations, but it can allow the countries to adopt political, social, economic and other local cultural variables that make it successful in that particular country.  For example, the country of the Netherlands uses the practices of public relations, one of its older terms voorlichting and does not acknowledge the use of the term public relations, but yet, it is part of the global theory because it still takes into practice the basic standards of public relations with a Dutch twist on the profession and practice.

 3. According to Grunig’s research, which of the four “models” does seem to be universal

Answer: According to Grunig’s research the press agentry/publicity model is the mostly widely used model around the world.  Although, according to Grunig, it is the least effective model of the four models in public relations.  The reasons for the least effective model being used is the amount of local customs and variables adopted into the profession of public relations that most countries only use the bare minimum to stay in touch and have minimal commonality with other countries around the globe.  The least effective in the agentry/publicity model follows a normative and global theory that makes public relations a global profession amongst many different countries.

 4. This global theory argues that public relations will be most effective when what happens

Answer: Public relations will be most effective if countries are allowed to bring in their local variables to create a unique model of public relations to be practiced within the country.  The idea of having some small commonality amongst different countries in the public relations profession satisfies the normative theory and global theory.  According to Grunig, if these basic parts of public relations do not exist because they are resistant to local variables, then public relations cannot be practiced within these countries and cannot be considered a part of the global practice and do not fulfill the global theory of public relations.

 5. Explain, in your own words, the 8 “generic principles”

Answer: According to Grunig, the eight generic principles are empowerment of public relations, integrated communication function, a separate management function, headed by a strategic manager rather than a communication technician or an administrative manager who supervises technical services, involved in strategic management, two-way  and symmetrical communication, diverse, and ethic.  Empowerment of public relations refers to the fact that the head communication person must be a part of the top administrators of the company, especially in making decisions for the organization. Integrated communication function refers to coordinating or bringing together all communication/public relations functions into one department.  A separate management function refers to the idea of making the public relations department available for other departments to function off of to help accomplish their own departmental goals within the organization.  Involved in strategic management refers to the development of strategies or programs to be used to communicate with the publics of an organization. Two-way and symmetrical communication refers to the use of dialogue, research and listening to help with the management of relationships within the organization and with the outside publics of the organization.  Diverse refers to creating more diversity in practices that coordinates with the growth of diversity in an organization’s publics.  Ethical refers to the use of ethics in public relations when making decisions in the organization.


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