Public Relations Graduate Publishes in a Top Academic Journal

Sophia Honisch

Sophia Honisch, a graduate of MSc Strategic Communication and Public Relations (Joint Degree programme between the University of Stirling and Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona), has secured a publication of her dissertation research in a top academic journal  Corporate Reputation Review.
The journal article “The Effects of Paracrisis Origin and Response Strategy on Facebook Audience’s Perceived Organisational Reputation and Behavioural Intentions” was published together with her dissertation supervisor Dr Lluís Más Manchón, a lecturer at Universitat Pompeu Fabra. The study explores paracrises as social crises, which need to be anticipated, identified, monitored and managed by organisations. The authors identify paracrisis response strategies that public relations are recommended to use while dealing with reputation threats on social media.
The study explores four organisational response strategies to paracrises – reform, humour, refuse, and refute – in two experiments examining respondents’ perceptions of organisational reputation and paracrisis behavioural intentions. The results show that a reform strategy is the most recommendable, while a humorous strategy is the least recommendable. The study is highly relevant as adopting the appropriate response to reputation threats and paracrises can prevent potential real-world crises and protect organisations’ reputations. It further emphasises the need of organisations to adapt (accommodate) to communities by explaining the situation and exchanging information horizontally.
Sophia was very pleased with her remarkable success and said: “Being able to publish a scientific article as a result of my master’s thesis makes me very proud. This perfectly expresses the level of education we received in our Master’s programme Strategic Communication and Public Relations at the University of Stirling and Universitat Pompeu Fabra, as well as the individual support our professors gave us.”
MSc Strategic Communication and Public Relations is delivered jointly by the University of Stirling and Universitat Pompeu Fabra and is unique of its kind in this subject area in the world. Students complete the first semester in Stirling, the second semester in Barcelona and then decide if they would like to complete their dissertation at Stirling or UPF. Students have an opportunity to immerse themselves in a variety of cultures and first-hand international experience while they study on this interdisciplinary, advanced postgraduate course. They receive a joint MSc degree from both universities.
You can read the publication here
You can find out more about the MSc Strategic Communications and Public Relations (Joint Degree) here