Media School faculty, students study PR messaging, reputational perception
Popularization strategies communicated substantively and standardization strategies communicated symbolically in corporate social responsibility messaging generally yield the greatest reputational gains for organizations, according to an article by Media School faculty and students.
“We’re All in This Together: Legitimacy and Coronavirus-Oriented CSR Messaging,” appearing in Sustainability was authored by professors Nicholas Browning and Sung-Un Yang, doctoral candidate Ejae Lee and master’s student Sung Hyun Lee. It investigates how legitimization strategies embedded in CSR messages related to the COVID-19 pandemic influenced multidimensional stakeholder assessments of reputation.
The experimental survey manipulated pragmatic and moral legitimacy using three conditions (self- vs. other- vs. both-oriented messaging); substantive and symbolic management (informative vs. uninformative content); and popularization and standardization approaches (leadership vs. followership).
This article is published in a special issue of Sustainability titled “Corporate Social Responsibility, Corporate Social Advocacy, and Societal Change,” which was sponsored by the Arthur W. Page Center for Integrity in Public Communication.
In support of research related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of the Vice Provost for Research provided $720 to help fund the project. The project was conceived and refined by members of the Media School’s Strategic Communication Research Lab.