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Two-way Communication James Grunig

James Grunig, one of the leading public relations scholars in the world, proposes his model of two-way, symmetrical communication as the best way to achieve ethical decisions. He bases his theory on the following assumptions:

  • Collaboration, working jointly with others, is a key value in ethical decisions.
  • The process of dialogue with different people allows for both listening and arguing.
  • Not everyone will get what they want, but dialogue will lead to the most ethical outcome.

This approach requires the public relations practitioner to balance their role as advocate for their client with their role as social conscience. Opponents of this model say it falls short for failing to address the question of how far PR professionals should go in counseling their clients and employers to address the needs of others. Other critics contend that two-way symmetrical public relations is an unrealistic, utopian ideal.


Responsible Advocacy

Enlightened Self Interest
Two-Way Communication
Attorney/ Adversary