1st Edition

Strategic Communication in a Global Crisis National and International Responses to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Edited By Ralph Tench, Juan Meng, Ángeles Moreno Copyright 2023
    390 Pages 55 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    390 Pages 55 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This edited volume makes a unique and timely contribution by exploring in depth the topic of strategic communication and COVID-19 from a global perspective. It is widely agreed that effective and timely communication and leadership are crucial to the successful management of any pandemic. With the ongoing and possibly long-lasting impact COVID-19 has had on many aspects of communication and multiple sectors of our societies, it is critical to explore the role of strategic communication in change management during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. This book addresses such a need and is thoroughly grounded in rich empirical evidence gained through a global study of COVID-19 communication experiences and strategies.

    In the second half of 2020, a transnational team of senior researchers conducted research to investigate COVID-19 communications (COM-COVID-19) in different countries, representing Europe, Africa, Latin America, North America, South America, and Asia. The results presented in this book provide a compelling, current picture of the COVID-19 pandemic and strategic communication globally. Chapters individually explore the national and regional experiences and discuss relevant successes and failures of pandemic communication and specific learning from the 2020–2021 crises. By emphasising the discussion on key communication channels, sources of information, facts and concerns as related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the editors call for actions to develop effective strategies within unique national contexts, which can shed light on global expectations on necessary public health responses and communication.

    This book is written for scholars, educators and professionals in communication, public relations, strategic communication and corporate communication. It is also appropriate to use this book as a supplementary text for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses on relevant courses.





    List of contributors

    List of Figures, Tables and Infographics

    Part I: Introduction

    Chapter 1: A world turned upside down

    Ralph Tench, Juan Meng and Ángeles Moreno

    Part II: Observations and responses from communication professionals around the world

    Chapter 2: A question of trust: Exploring trust concepts, experiences, and early observations from Europe

    Chiara Valentini, Øyvind Ihlen and Ralph Tench

    Chapter 3: Communication professionals’ adaptation to COVID-19 impacts in North America

    Juan Meng, Bryan Reber and Tong Xie

    Chapter 4: Latin America and the strategic communication dilemma in times of COVID-19

    Alejandro Álvarez-Nobell, Juan-Carlos Molleda, Ángeles Moreno and Ana María Suárez-Monsalve

    Part III: Global perspectives on COVID-19 communication


    Chapter 5: Assessing COVID-19 communication in China:

    Communication channels, sources for information, and information retention

    Juan Meng, Ruoyu Sun, Tong Xie and Zhao Wang


    Chapter 6: "I am impressed by how quickly they changed": The impact of CSR communication initiatives during COVID-19 among millennials in Italy

    Elanor Colleoni, Mirko Olivieri, Stefania Romenti and Grazia Murtarelli

    Chapter 7: Risk communication and disinformation in Portugal: How media consumption affects the understanding of COVID-19 health-protective messages

    Gisela Gonçalves, Valeriano Piñeiro-Naval and Sónia de Sá

    Chapter 8: COVID-19 information seeking in Spain: How media use affects trust in the government

    Cristina Navarro, Ángeles Moreno and Cristina Fuentes-Lara


    Chapter 9: The good, the bad and the ugly: Learning lessons from the UK’s COVID-19 communication

    Ralph Tench and Gemma Bridge

    Chapter 10: Public trust in governments’ communicating with intermediaries: Finnish and Swedish governments during the COVID-19 pandemic

    Chiara Valentini and Mark Badham

    Chapter 11: Experiencing COVID-19 in Denmark, Norway and Sweden: The role of the Nordic model

    Øyvind Ihlen, Bengt Johansson and Mark Blach-Ørsten


    Chapter 12: Strategic communication and left-wing populist governments: The paradigmatic case of crisis management due to COVID-19 in Argentina

    Alejandro Álvarez-Nobell

    Chapter 13: Brazil and the COVID-19 pandemic: Crisis communication management as opposed to public communication

    Andréia Silveira Athaydes, Karen Cristina Kraemer Abreu, Marcus Vinicius de Jesus


    Chapter 14: Factors influencing Americans’ preventive behaviours during the COVID-19 pandemic: Lessons for strategic health and risk communicators

    Sung In Choi, Yan Jin and Mark Badham


    Chapter 15: Crisis communication by the government of Georgia during the COVID-19 pandemic

    Natia Kaladze, Leli Bibilashvili and Mari Bandzeladze

    Chapter 16: Information-seeking behaviour and governmental communication assessment during the COVID-19 pandemic in Romania

    Camelia Cmeciu, Anca Anton, Anamaria Nicola

    Chapter 17: COVID-19 communication in Turkey: Exploring the public’s information-seeking behaviour

    Özlem Alikılıç, Ebru Gökaliler and İnanç Alikılıç


    Chapter 18: An African perspective of COVID-19 communication: Citizens’ perspectives and sense-making of the pandemic in Nigeria

    Chinedu Jude Nwasum, Ezinne Chioma Abaneme and Aloysius Chukwuebuka Ifeanyichukwu

    Part IV: Conclusion

    Chapter 19: Implications for the future of strategic communications from the COVID-19 pandemic

    Ralph Tench, Juan Meng and Ángeles Moreno



    Ralph Tench is professor of Communication and director of research for Leeds Business School, Leeds Beckett University in the UK, and past president (2017–2020) of the European Public Relations Research and Education Association (EUPRERA). Professor Tench’s research involves national and international funded projects from the private sector, the EU, public health and research councils.

    Juan Meng, PhD, is the Head of the Department of Advertising and Public Relations at the University of Georgia, USA. She serves on the national advisory board of the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations and the Institute for Public Relations (IPR) ELEVATE. Her research specialisation includes public relations leadership, leadership development, women and leadership in PR, and global communication.

    Ángeles Moreno, outgoing President of EUPRERA is a scholar at the high-performance Group of Advanced Studies on Communication (GEAC) at the University Rey Juan Carlos, with extensive experience and leadership on transnational and awarded research projects. She is included in a prominent position in the national ranking of researchers with about 27 books, 16 chapters and more than 55 academic journal papers.