Marianne D Sisson

The reading identified the multitude of different theoretical perspectives that contribute to the structure and layering of public relations practice.

The chapter acknowledged the contributing role of each theory and highlighted the complexity of public relations practice.

Systems theory (Sison, 2009) provides the dominant framework for public relations practitioners. It identifies public relations in context, noting the interactions organisations have within their internal and external environments.

Communication theories and developments allow public relations to transfer from theory to practice (Sison, 2009). It provides the connecting link and transference of meaning from an organisation to their publics and employees.

Whilst the excellence theory (Grunig, Grunig and Dozier, 2006. Cited in Sison, 2009) and rhetorical and interpretive theory adds more depth and complexity to the structure of public relations.

I found communication and the effectiveness of communication the underlying factor in each of the given theories.

Effective and strategic communication implements theories and contributes to practice. Without communication PR does not exist. Communication in all shapes and forms is the most important aspect of an organisation.

I personally believe that no single theory can explain or guide public relations practice. Each different theory or notion is significant to the success or failure of an organisation and therefore, a contingency theory approach to Public relations is the most important and comprehensive answer.


         –          Sison, M. D. (2009). Theoretical Contexts. In J. Chia & G. Synnott (eds), An introduction to public relations from theory to practice. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.


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