Public Relations, Democracy and the Establishment of Effective Organizational Transparency

Mr. Lawrence P. Lhulier,
Dr. DeMond S. Miller
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Organizational achievement of two-way symmetric communications offers the ideal societal mechanism for achieving corporate accountability, organizational transparency and reflexive conceptualization of organizational affect. Assessment of communication practices at the micro-level reveals structural flaws that compromise societal discourse regarding legislative reform and maintenance of good corporate governance. These structural deficiencies arising out of flawed communication structures make societal realization of an informed citizenry an unachievable goal. Flawed communication perpetuates misunderstanding. that undermines accountability measures as well as risk assessment (e.g. financial security, institutional integrity, as well as public safety). The field of public relations offers conceptual and tactical approaches to communication capable of reversing these troubling trends that continue to undermine the credibility of democratic societies' key institutions. However, outsiders too often define public relations in terms that undermine the structural capabilities of public relations practitioners. Clearly defined and enforced professional standards along with accurate and comprehensive definitions of the role public relations serves must be achieved for public relations practitioners to realize true societal understanding of their professional role. The reflexive public relations practitioner seeks to provide organizations with the infrastructure that satisfies democratic societies' demand for transparency through accurate and comprehensive communication. Reflexive public relations structures capable of combating disinformation efforts will further advance democracies' demand for transparency. At the macro-level, the profession of public relations now has the opportunity to redefine its societal role in the future of the twenty-first century and invigorate the now declining civic virtue decimated by misinformation campaigns and structurally flawed communication practices that undermine informed societal discourse.

Keywords: Public Relations, Reflexivity, Transparency
Stream: Media, Film Studies, Theatre, Communication
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Public Relations, Democracy and the Establishment of Effective Organizational Transparency

Mr. Lawrence P. Lhulier

Editorial/Marketing Specialist, National School Public Relations Association

Lawrence P. Lhulier is an Editorial/Marketing Specialist for the National School Public Relations Association and a recent graduate of Rowan University's Graduate School of Public Relations and Advertising where he received a Master's Degree in Public Relations. His primary area of specialization is the ethical and structural implications of two-way symmetric communication practices. Mr Lhulier has presented a number of papers at scholarly conferences focused on communication practices' affect on society. Most recent conferences attended include the Fifth and Sixth Annual Interdisciplinary Public Relations Conferences (held at the University of Miami), as well as the 2001 Conference on Communication and Environment (held at the University of Cincinnati).

Dr. DeMond S. Miller

Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and The Liberal Arts and Sciences Institute, Rowan University

Ref: H05P0400