Crisis Communication

The most fascinating research area in the field of public relations is crisis communication. It is also the toughest part of the PR practice, on the other hand. When calamity lurks, when the name of a person, company, organization or institution is at stake, when the credibility is in danger and the trust of the public threatens to melt away, then the professional communicator will have to do overtime. Crises are the highest challenge for the PR practitioner. They put to the test the communication plans and strategies of the organization, as well as the reaction or decision capacity of those in charge. In time of crisis the sometimes empty rhetoric of the PR literature frequently remains useless.

Since the main goal in crisis situation is to control the flow of information, I have studied the media development of crises. The interest of the public starts to decline – and the danger for the organization to vanish – after the media coverage has reached its climax. Based on case studies and working with real scenarios, I try to identify possible coping strategies to create a media response that allow us to control the climax of the crisis, and thus the media life of issues.