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
Jesper Falkheimer (Ph.D. Lund University, 2004), is Professor in Strategic Communication at Department of Strategic Communication, Lund University, Sweden. His research interests are strategic communication in general, and more specific, crisis communication, public relations, communication management, terrorism and place branding. Since several years he has combined research with university management positions and is now Executive Director for Division for Research, Collaboration and Innovation at Lund University, after six years as Rector for Campus Helsingborg, and two assignments as head of department. He is Editor-in-Chief for Journal of Communication Management, one of the leading research journals in his field, Honorary Fellow at Hong Kong Polytechnic University, an executive board member of one of the major communication agencies in Sweden and director for the premium executive education program for communication professionals in Sweden, based at the Swedish Communication Association. He is also an executive board member of University College of Halmstad, Sweden. He is co-editor (main editors Robert Heath and Winni Johanssen) for International Encyklopedia of Strategic Communication (2018, Wiley) and has published several books, anthologies and articles in different journals.
Ph.D., Lund University, Lund, Sweden, 2004
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
Strategic communication, cris communication, public relations, communication management, terrorism and place branding
"It is an admirable text that brings together theories from a number of fields. Indeed, the book is a veritable smorgasbord of interesting and relevant concepts. It rattles through them at a rapid rate, all within broad reflective, critical and holistic perspectives."
Kevin Ruck, Co-founder of PR Academy and the author of Explroing Internal Communication (Routledge)
"I think this book would be an excellent resource for anyone who wants a universal look at the practice of strategic communication." Linda Davies, TechComm