Coleman, S and Firmstone, JA (2014) Contested meanings of public engagement: exploring discourse and practice within a British city council. Media, Culture and Society, 36 (6). 826 - 844. ISSN 0163-4437
This article explores local government engagement and communication with citizens in one of the UK’s largest cities from the perspective of a range of actors involved in the engagement process. We establish that a variety of interpretations and contested meanings of engagement exist among professionals involved in different spheres of public engagement. These meanings have different outcomes for the potential voice and influence given to citizens in the city’s democratic existence. We explore what the differing motivations behind the council’s communications and engagement strategies mean for the way that the democratic space of the city is constructed and communicated to citizens. We conclude that there is a need for closer integration of engagement and communications strategies. Integral to the success of such strategies is an empirically informed understanding of what public engagement is, and what skills and practices are necessary to engage with citizens successfully, especially in the reconfigured communication ecology to which new media adds a new dimension.
|Keywords:||Communication strategies; Efficacy; Local government; Organizational roles; Political participation; Public engagement|
|Institution:||The University of Leeds|
|Academic Units:||The University of Leeds > Faculty of Performance, Visual Arts and Communications (Leeds) > Institute of Communication Studies (Leeds)|
|Depositing User:||Symplectic Publications|
|Date Deposited:||24 Aug 2015 15:25|
|Last Modified:||03 Nov 2016 08:55|