Strategic Communication: An Introduction (Paperback) book cover

Strategic Communication

An Introduction

By Jesper Falkheimer, Mats Heide

© 2018 – Routledge

160 pages

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Strategic communication comprises different forms of goal-oriented communication inside and between organizations, their stakeholders and the society. Strategic communication is an emerging practice and research field integrating established disciplines such as public relations, organizational communication and marketing communication into a holistic framework. The field is based on an awareness of the fundamental importance of communication for the existence and performance of all organizations.

This textbook offers a broad insight into the field of strategic communication. The main aim of the book is to give a general overview of theories, concepts and methods in strategic communication. The book also aims to develop an understanding of different perspectives and the consequences each one has for practice. After reading the book the student or reader will be able to define and reflect upon strategic communication as an academic field and professional practice, describe relevant theories and apply these to communication problems.

The authors apply a reflective and practice-oriented approach meaning earlier research or theories are not only described, but also discussed from different critical perspectives. A practice-oriented approach means, in this book, that the authors strongly emphasize the role of contexts and situations—where strategic communication actually happens. This book will help business and communications students to not only define and understand a variety of strategic communications theories, but to use those theories to generate communication strategy and solutions.

Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables, About the authors, Preface, Introduction, PART I: FUNDAMENTALS, 1 What is communication?The transmission perspective, The ritual perspective, Both perspectives matter, Theories of communication, The characterization of publics and the transformation of the public sphere, Asymmetry, symmetry or both, Strategic and communicative action, Dialogues, discussions and debates, 2 What is strategy?Tactics and strategy, Strategic schools and strategic perspectives, Whittington’s typology of strategies, Summary of perspectives, Practical use in strategic communication, Consequences for communication practice, Concluding reflections, 3 What is strategic communication?The traditional research fields, An ambition to break traditional borders, Strategic communication as a knowledge and research field, Strategic communication as a practice, Research journals within the field, On becoming a reflective practitioner, PART II: COMMUNICATION PROCESSES AND ORGANIZATIONS, 4 Society, social change and strategic communication, Modernity: Rationalism, objectivism and individualism, Late modernity, 5 Organizational identity and culture, Three building blocks, Hierarchical communication, Mass media communication, Informal communication, Employees as ambassadors, Transmission communication is alive! What communication strategies are used? Some advice on the way, 6 Change and crisis communication, Organizational changes, Crisis communication, Handling a changing and complex world,7 Mediatization: From traditional to social media, Special or general interest? News value, Sources and journalists, Strategies for sources, PART III: FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS, 8 Reflections and the communicative organization, Communication trends, Forward-looking reflections, The communicative organization, References, Index

About the Authors


Jesper Falkheimer and Mats Heide are Professors in Strategic Communication at the Department of Strategic Communication, Lund University in Sweden.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Business Communication / General
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Marketing / General