Profession Research Communication

Our scientists examine the professional field of PR/communications management with regard to its structures, its actors and their contexts. In addition to processes, organisational and management issues, the empirical studies also focus on career paths in communications, self-understandings and the assessment of media systems.

Our understanding of communication management

In research and teaching, Quadriga University Berlin takes the view that PR/communication management operates as a central organisational function at the interface between the organisation and the environment and controls and strategically processes the various communicative tasks as a management function.

Developments in the field

Corporate communication has become increasingly important in recent years. Since the turn of the millennium, the demands placed on communication, especially in and by multinational public companies, have increased massively. At that time, communications departments were still able to concentrate on traditional press work and employee information. Megatrends such as globalisation, participation pressure and digitalisation have led to more stakeholder groups all over the world expecting not only information but dialogue - in real time. Consistent information of different stakeholders alone - especially in large, international companies - places increasing demands on the efficient organization of the various communication activities. But how do communication actors deal with this? Several of our studies investigated these and many other questions.

PR2025 - Future of PR

PR2025, a Delphi method study involving senior communicators, academics and experienced consultants, asked participants to consider the transition and mid-term period of PR/Comms and identify the competences needed to maintain confidence and relevance of the profession and its professionals. It was carried out by Prof. Dr. Ana Adi from Quadriga University of Applied Sciences during November 2018 and March 2019 and featured two rounds: one qualitative with open-ended questions and one quantitative where the respondents were asked to list or rank their choices to the same questions as in round 1.

According to PR2025 respondents, PR/Comms will continue to build upon their hard-won battles continuing to move towards playing a central role to business and to become a trusted advisor. To get there, they believe PR/Comms should increasingly facilitate dialogue between organizations and their stakeholders. This makes trust an essential asset for communicators and transparency and relevant content as a way to achieve it. But this route hides several threats:

  • mitigating opposing stakeholder demands and loyalties;
  • balancing transparency and information access with information overload; and
  • balancing business interests with societal impact.

Reader - Corporate Activism

“Corporate activism” has been intriguing, puzzling and challenging communicators in recent years. While in the past activism and corporate communications were often presented as incompatible if not as totally opposed (for that all you’ll need to do is leaf through any book of history of PR printed before 2000), a shift into what corporations can and should acknowledge seems to have haven taken towards the end of the first decade of 2000.

What is certain is that the term of corporate activism has entered the mainstream vocabulary implying not only that it is the right time and also increasingly expected that corporations are more explicit and more consistent about the values they have, the causes they promote, the ideas, ideals and ideologies they support.

This reader aims to tease out answers from practitioners, members and alumni of Quadriga University of Applied Sciences’ network. Conceived as a collection of research updates, opinion pieces, case studies and practitioner insight geared at communication practitioners and communication students, this reader is thought of as a conversation starter, and classroom material. It is thus structured in three parts: research updates, case studies, and tools and solutions from practitioners. 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Contact

For feedback or questions regarding the study Kommunikationsmanagement 2018 please contact Prof. Dr. René Seidenglanz, for questions regarding the study PR2025 contact Professor Ana Adi. We are looking forward to hear from you!

Professor of Public Relations and Corporate Communications
Quadriga University of Applied Sciences
Vice President of Quadriga University of Applied Sciences Berlin / Professor for Communications, in particular Communication Management
Quadriga University of Applied Sciences