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Theses, Masters


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Publication Details

Successfully submitted for the award of Master of Philosophy (M.Phil) to the Technological University Dublin, April, 2013.


The purpose of the exploration was to research the reputation and public relations practised within the nightclub industry. This is achieved through exploring the public relations practices of the Irish Nightclub Industry Association (INIA) and individual nightclubs. The specific areas examined are public relations as a management function, communications, relationship management, an understanding of publics, issue management and crisis management. Reputation and the reputation management process are also assessed. These areas of practice combined give an understanding of how the nightclub industry’s reputation can be explored. Publics affected by the nightclub industry give their opinion on these practices by the industry. Best practices in public relations including Grunig and Grunig’s twelve hallmarks of excellence in public relations are recalled in the literature review. The qualitative paradigm is used in the methodology and includes assessment of best practices, analysis of documents and reports, both internal and external to the industry, and interviews with affiliate and non-affiliates of the nightclub industry. The findings of the exploration show that using symmetrical communication and adhering to most of the hallmarks of excellence in public relations are the most effective way to improve the reputation of the nightclub industry. The findings also show that nightclubs do not practise public relations correctly, nor do they communicate with many of their publics. Nightclubs rarely use the symmetrical model of communication. The INIA are more proficient in their practice of public relations; however, they practice public relations circumstantially and not on an ongoing basis. The INIA also demonstrate better communication practices with their publics; however, their communication is more aligned with asymmetrical practice. The exploration shows the reputation of the nightclub industry has improved over the last ten years, but it was improving from a very low standard. The nightclub industry believes improved public relations and communications are essential to improve the industry’s reputation.