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32 Mapping public relations theory: Concluding reflections and future directions

From the book Public Relations
Chiara Valentini


This chapter reviews and discusses the status of public relations theory. It does so by offering the editor’s own reading and interpretation of public relations theory as discussed in this handbook. Specifically, a typology for classifying public relations theories is presented, and then used to conduct a meta-level theoretical analysis of the theories presented in Part III. The typology is based on three major theoretical objectives (normative, descriptive, and instrumental), and three perspectives (managerial, public, and conceptual). Concluding reflections on the status of public relations theory and suggestions for the future direction of research are offered.

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