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Introduction to Public Relations

Introduction to Public Relations
Strategic, Digital, and Socially Responsible Communication

Second Edition

October 2020 | 448 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Introduction to Public Relations: Strategic, Digital, and Socially Responsible Communication presents a comprehensive introduction to the field of public relations (PR) with a focus on new media and social responsibility. Recognizing that the shifts in technology, business, and culture require a fresh approach, authors Janis Teruggi Page and Lawrence J. Parnell show students how today's PR professionals create persuasive messages with modern technologies while working in line with the industry's foundations. The authors balance this approach with a focus on understanding communication theory, history, process, and practice, and how all these concepts can be applied to strategic PR planning. The Second Edition features new and refreshed content throughout, including cases, chapter-opening scenarios, and profiles of both young and senior practitioners with tips and career guidance for student success.

Included with this title:

The password-protected Instructor Resource Site (formally known as SAGE Edge)
offers access to all text-specific resources, including a test bank and editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides. Learn more.

About the Authors
Chapter 1: Strategic Public Relations: A Constantly Evolving Discipline
The Image of Public Relations in Popular Culture

Defining Public Relations: What’s in a Name?

Defining Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability Communications: Doing Well by Doing Good, or Is It More Complex?

Growth of Public Relations Into a Global Industry

Roles and Functions for Public Relations Pros

Career Paths for Public Relations Professionals: Which Way Is Right for You?

Chapter 2: The History of Modern Public Relations: From Barnum to Lee, Bernays to Page, and Introducing Other Pioneers
A History of Public Relations in the Modern Era

Growth of the Public Relations Agency Sector

The Future of Public Relations

Chapter 3: Ethics and Law in Public Relations
Ethics in Public Relations

Stay Informed, Be Vigilant, Develop Professional and Personal Ethics

How Does Law Affect Public Relations?

Chapter 4: Foundations of Public Relations: Research and Theory
How to Begin

Primary Research Methods

The Big Ideas Behind Public Relations Strategies

Scenario Outcome

Chapter 5: Strategic Communication Planning
Foundations of Strategic Planning in Strategic Public Relations



Evaluation, Research, and Measurement

Chapter 6: Public Relations Writing: Persuasive and Audience Focused
For a Public Relations Career, You Had Better Become a Good Writer

Public Relations Writing Strategy and Style

Generating Content: Public Relations Writing Essentials

Chapter 7: Media Relations in a Digital World
The State of the News Media Today

Communications Theory and Media Relations

Measuring News Coverage

Global Media Relations Trends and Tactics

Chapter 8: Social Media and Emerging Technologies
Social Media

The Value and Strategies of Social Media

A Showcase of Digital and Social Media PR Practices

Evaluating Social Media and Looking to the Future

Chapter 9: Corporate Social Responsibility and Community Relations
Defining Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability Communications: Doing Well by Doing Good, or Is It More Complex?

Successful Corporate Social Responsibility Flows From Business Culture and Builds Reputation

Communicating Corporate Social Responsibility: Opportunities and Challenges

Community Relations and Corporate Social Responsibility

Chapter 10: Employee Relations, Corporate Culture, and Social Responsibility
Employee Relations and Healthy Organizations

Public Relations and Employee Engagement

Communication Challenges and Opportunities

Employee Relations and Corporate Social Responsibility

Chapter 11: Corporate Communication and Reputation Management
The Modern Corporation: Meeting the Challenge

Core Competencies of Corporate Communications

Corporate Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility

Financial Communications, Media Relations, and Investor Relationships

Chapter 12: Issues Management and Crisis Communication
Issues Management

Crisis Communications

Preparing for and Managing a Crisis

Chapter 13: Sports, Tourism, and Entertainment
Opportunities and Challenges of Sports Public Relations

Tourism: More Than Sightseeing

Entertainment Public Relations: Publicity and Much More

Chapter 14: Nonprofit, Health, Education, and Grassroots Organizations
Nonprofits: Size, Impact, and Opportunity for Public Relations Practitioners

Health Communication

Public Relations Support of Educational Institutions

Public Relations in Grassroots Organizations

Chapter 15: Public Affairs, Government Relations, and Political Communications
Public Affairs, Government Relations, and Political Communications

Government Relations and Lobbying

Applying Public Relations Strategy to Campaigns and Elections

Chapter 16: Global Public Relations and Public Diplomacy
An Overview of Global Communications

Global Public Relations in Different Settings

Public Diplomacy, Strategic Public Relations, and Social Responsibility



Instructor Resource Site

For additional information, custom options, or to request a personalized walkthrough of these resources, please contact your sales representative.

LMS cartridge included with this title for use in Blackboard, Canvas, Brightspace by Desire2Learn (D2L), and Moodle

The LMS cartridge makes it easy to import this title’s instructor resources into your learning management system (LMS). These resources include:

  • Test banks
  • Editable chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides
  • Sample course syllabi
  • Lecture notes
  • All tables and figures from the textbook 
Don’t use an LMS platform?

You can still access all of the same online resources for this title via the password-protected Instructor Resource Site.
Student Study Site


The open-access Student Study Site makes it easy for students to maximize their study time, anywhere, anytime. It offers flashcards that strengthen understanding of key terms and concepts, as well as learning objectives that reinforce the most important material.

I used the text this semester in my PR Principles course. It's quite good, particularly the first half on general principles. The second half has chapters looking at individual specializations within PR, which was less helpful to my teaching. (Students don't really have a specialized interest yet.) If I use it again, I'll assign pairs of students to pick one of those chapters and give a class presentation on each specialization, so everyone doesn't have to read everything.

Dr Jennifer Rauch
Mass Communication Dept, Linfield University
November 18, 2022

This textbook delivers a clear and concise understanding about a variety of key topics that are essential for the PR student. The emphasis on socially responsible communication highlights the necessity for the PR professional to remain ever vigilant with ethical issues.

Dr Joyce Costello
Cardiff School of Management, Cardiff Metropolitan University
November 15, 2021

I used this textbook in Spring 2021 and I am using it again as I found it useful for my class.

Ms Jessica Otitigbe
Communications, College Of Saint Rose
March 8, 2022
Key features
  • New chapter-opening Scenarios include cases on how Orlando tourism officials overcame the impact of the Pulse nightclub shooting; the U.S. Custom and Border Protection (CBP) separation policy and its impact on nonprofits who shelter migrant children; and the controversial tweet by the Houston Rockets GM that set off a global crisis between the NBA and China.
  • Expanded content on the role played by women and people of color in the evolution of modern PR gives attention to historical figures that have been overlooked by other textbooks to inspire the next generation of PR professionals.
  • Enhanced analysis of social media and the vital role of digital communications in strategic communications is reflected in several chapters through in-depth reviews of these game-changing factors.
  • New content and insights address the growing interest in social responsibility and sustainability initiatives including CEO and investor social activism; employee preference for jobs with social purpose; and consumer demand for ethical brands.


  • Chapter-opening Scenarios frame chapter content and capture student attention by discussing current PR challenges. At the end of chapters, students explore various aspects of socially responsible communication to address the PR challenges.  
  • Socially Responsible Case Studies in each chapter illustrate the key responsibilities of a modern PR professional such as media relations, crisis communications, employee communications, applied communications research, and corporate and government-specific communications. Each case features problem-solving questions to encourage critical thinking.
  • Social Responsibility in Action boxes feature short, specific social responsibility cases to highlight best practices and effective tactics, showing the link between sound PR strategies and meaningful social responsibility programs.
  • Insight boxes highlight important or unique topics in each chapter and can be used to spark classroom discussion.
  • PR Profiles inspire students with stories from PR veterans and rising stars such as the U.S. CEO of Burson-Marsteller, the Chief Communication Officer of the United Nations Foundation, and the Executive VP at Havas PR. 

Sage College Publishing

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