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M Compte-Pujol, K Matilla, S Hernández (2018): “Strategy and Public Relations: a Bibliometric Comparative Study”. Revista Latina de Comunicación Social, 73, pp. 748 a 764.
DOI: 10.4185/RLCS-2018-1280en

Strategy and Public Relations: a Bibliometric Comparative Study

Marc Compte-Pujol [CV] [oORCID] [gGS] Associate professor of the Faculty of Business and Communication. Universidad de Vic-Universidad Central de Cataluña (Spain) - marc.compte@uvic.cat

Kathy Matilla [CV] [oORCID] [gGS] Associate professor of the Faculty of Communication and International Relations Blanquerna. Universidad Ramón Llull (Spain) – kathyms@blanquerna.url.edu.

Salvador Hernández [CV] [oORCID] [gGS] Full professor of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Communication. Universidad Católica San Antonio de Murcia (Spain) - shernandez@ucam.edu

This article presents a bibliometric study of journals specialized in public relations (PR) that were listed in the Social Sciences Citation Index-Communication-Journal List database and journals specialized in strategy management that were listed in the Social Sciences Citation Index-Management-Journal List. Both lists owned by Thomson Reuters until October 2016. Articles referring to the concept of “strategy” in PR journals were identified through content analysis, as well as those articles that included the concept “public relations” in journals specialized in strategy management. Variables of analysis were: periods of time for publishing; gender of authors; prevalent number of authors per article; and titles of the articles. Results showed that strategy appeared widely treated in the journals specialized in PR, while PR had almost no presence in magazines specialized in strategy management.

Bibliometrics; Public Relations (PR); Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI); Strategy; Web of Science (WoS).

1. Introduction. 2. Theoretical framework. 3. Research questions. 4. Methodology. 5. Limitations. 6. Results. 6.1. Results of the terms “strategy” and “strategic” in journals specialized in Public Relations. 6.1.1. Public Relations Review. 6.1.2. Journal of Public Relations Research. 6.2. Results of the terms “public relations” and “PR” in the journals specialized in Strategy. 6.2.1. Journals with the term “Strategy”. 6.2.2. Journal with the term “Strategic”. 7. Discussion and Conclusions. 8. List of References.

Translation of abstract by M. Comte-Pujol
(Associate Professor / Universidad de Vic-Universidad Central de Cataluña)

Translation of paper by Yuhanny Henares
(Academic translator, Universitat de Barcelona)

 [ Research ] 
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1. Introduction

Bibliometrics consist of the application of quantitative techniques to the study of documents’ bibliographic features (Castillo & Xifra, 2006: 147).

Literature specialized in bibliometrics is quite abundant. The following authors outstand, among many others: Beniger (1990); Bornmann and others(2008); Brody and others (2007); Bunz (2005); Burnham (1990); Butler (2008); Campbell (2008); Clarke (2007); Cope & Kalantzis (1993, 2010); Cope, Kalantzis & Magee (2011); Cope & Phillips (2013); Craig & Ferguson (2013); Davies (2009); De Solla Price (1965); Dewatripont and others(2006); Edlin & Rubinfeld (2004); Evans (2008); Ferreira et al. (2016); Fink & Bourne (2007); García-Guinea & Sota Rius (1998); Ginsparg (2007); González Quirós & Martín (2009); Guédon (2001); Hannay (2007); Harnad (2009); Harzing & Van Der Wal (2008); Jakubowicz (2009); Jefferson, Wager & Davidoff (2002); Judson (1994); Kousha & Thelwall (2007); Koehler (2001); Lee & Bero (2006); López Baena and others(2005); López Piñero (1972); Mabe & Amin (2002); Mccabe and others(2006); Meho, 2007; Morris (2009); Noyons and others(2009); Norris & Oppenheim (2007); Osca-Lluch and others(2009); Pauly & Stergiou (2008); Pritchard (1969); Schroeder (2007); Simons (2008); Stanley, 2007; Suber, 2007; Tenopir & King (2009); Todd & Ladle (2008); Van De Sompel & Lagoze (2007); Van Leeuwen (2001); Wilbanks (2007); or Willinsky (2006).

Bibliometrics studies:

Allow knowing the fields in which the topics of a scientific area develop, to know the researches trends, identify research groups (researchers) working therein, to identify the level of international interconnections between researches, the relationship between gender, among researchers, citation styles of other publications, self-citations of publications, self-citations of researchers, research centers they are conducted in (educational, professional, researchers). That is, a set of parameters that allow to stablish a landscape of the research study in a specific field (Castillo & Carretón, 2010: 293).

The disruption of Internet and social networks, as well as the digitization of texts, the construction of open access infrastructures and the growth of the number of repositories, grosso modo coincide with the start of the XXI century, it has increased the interest and debate about the creation and exchange of scientific production (Cope & Kalantzis, 2009: n/e).

Over time, bibliometrics production specialized and delimited its study object. Thus, we identified papers about communication (So, 1988; Paisley, 1989; Cáceres & Caffarel, 1993; Jones, 1997; Lauf, 2005; Lievrouw, 1990; Martínez Nicolás, 2009; Castillo & Carretón, 2010; Castillo & Rubio, 2010; Castillo-Esparcia et al., 2012; Roca-Correa & Pueyo-Ayhan, 2012; Martínez-Nicolás & Saperas-Lapiedra, 2016; Compte-Pujol et al., 2016) and also specific studies about public relations (Pasadeos & Renfro, 1989, 1992; Pasadeos et al.; Sallot et al.,2003; Xifra & Castillo, 2006; Ki & Shin, 2006; Castillo & Xifra, 2006; Pasadeos et al., 2010; Fussell et al., 2013; Míguez et al., 2014; Kim et al., 2014; Marca et al., 2014; Míguez-González et al., 2016; among others).

On October 2016, Thomson Reuters enforced the sales of its business of intellectual property and sciences to several investment funds affiliated with Onex Corporation and Baring Private Equity Asia. This way, the platform known as Web of Knowledge (WoK) with Thomson Reuters, comprised by a wide portfolio of bibliographic data, citations and references of scientific publications about any discipline of knowledge (scientific, technological, humanistic and sociological), changed its name to Clarivate Analytics. A new company that will keep including brands such as Web of Science (WoS), Cortellis, Thomson Innovation, Derwent World Patents Index, Thomson CompuMark, MarkMonitor, Thomson IP Manager and Techstreet, among others.

Considering the academic prestige achieved by WoK and the WoS data base in recent times (Cope & Kalantzis, 2009: n/e), researchers of the five continents try to public their works in journals included in their data bases (McNutt, 2014), turning the platform into the most outstanding display that allows observing the main study object topics in every discipline and period, as well as its evolution through time and develop comparative studies.

2. Theoretical framework

According to Matilla and others (2015), the term “public relations” (RP) appears documented for the first time in the United States of America in 1882 (Goldman, 1948: 2; Chaumely & Huisman, 1963: 8; Cutlip, 1995: 208) and, in Europe, it was used for the first time in Germany in 1937 (Nessmann, 1995: 151-160). Its practice in the old communist countries date back to 1989 (Moloney, 2000: 40).

PR, both from their academic and professional orientation, are considered an independent functional area in the specialized literature and this directive categorization of the praxis is directly linked to its strategic orientation (Prat Gaballí, 1958; Matrat, 1970: 27, 37-49; Arnaldi, 1971: 217; Ugeux, 1973: 32-33; Ledigham & Bruning, 2000; Van Ruler, 2000; Van Ruler and others,2000, 2004; Van Ruler & Verčič, 2002, 2004).

From the application to management and business administration point of view, in the 2011 edition of the macro-study ECM-European Communication Monitor (http://www.zerfass.de/ECM-WEBSITE/ECM-2011.html) it is revealed that the participation of PR and communication professionals in directive levels or the possibility for accountability to the CEO-Chief Executive Officer are key aspects when it comes to evaluate the hierarchical responsibility and the power the department receives from the top management. 60% of the total of participants of ECM-2011 stated to directly report to the CEO and 17% to another member of the administration council. El 41.7% of European respondents had responsibility over the totality of the communication management and the relationship with stakeholders (interest groups). Most (55%) declared to be responsible of, at least, three communication fields, while 10% was limited to the relationships with media and external communication. 87% of Spanish respondents considered that the functional area of communication played a relevant role in the global performance of its organization, when generating financial and intangible assets (70% in Spain; 47.9% in the rest of Europe). Almost 70% of Spanish participants of the ECM-2011 considered that the main challenge the professional collective needed to face was the digital evolution and the social web – an issue that had increased 30 points in the preceding five years-, followed by a greater connection of communication strategies  with the business strategies (58%), the new evaluation methods (29%) and globalization (26.1%).

The British study State of the Profession Survey (2014) by Chartered Institute of PR-CIPR (http://www.cipr.co.uk/content/about-us/our-organisation), shows that, in the United Kingdom, a 70% of the 2.531 respondents considered that the essential function of their tasks focused in the design and execution of the communication annual strategic plan, that must offer added-value to organizations.

From the PR’s directive perspective and hence, strategic, we were interested in knowing what was the scientific production indicated in WoS, and identify the papers that managed strategy in specialized journals in PR and, in a parallel manner, those of the journals specialized in management that applied PR to their contents and to confirm whether there existed alignments or divergencies between both and, likewise, consistencies with the reference literature.

3. Research questions

The main objective in the double research was: (1) to know whether in the sample of journals of PR object of study, the strategic perspective of the discipline was considered, and (2) whether on management journals specialized in strategy, there were specific contents about PR published, between 01.01.00 and 15.07.15 in all cases.

As secondary objectives we proposed to know: (a) the years where the greatest number of papers was published; (b) gender issues about authors of analyzed papers; (c) number of authors per paper; and (d) titles of papers, to identify topics managed.

Twelve (12) research questions to answer to the different analysis variables that allowed achieving said objectives: 

(PI1) What are the journals catalogued in the SSCI–Communication–Journal List data base of WoS specialized in PR?

(PI2) What are the journals catalogued in the SSCI–Management–Journal List database of WoS specialized in strategy?

(PI3) Is the strategic perspective considered in papers published in specialized journals on PR?

(PI4) Are PR considered in the papers published in management journals specialized on strategy?

(PI5) What are the years in which a greater number of papers were published in journals specialized on PR?

(PI6) What are the years in which a greater number of papers were published in journals specialized on strategy?

(PI7) What is the gender distribution of the papers’ authors in journals specialized on PR?

(PI8) What is the gender distribution of the papers’ authors in journals specialized on strategy?

(PI9) What is the number of authors by prevailing paper in journals specialized on PR?

(PI10) What is the number of authors by prevailing paper in journals specialized on strategy?

(PI11) What are the titles of the papers of the journals specialized on PR?

(PI12) What are the titles of the papers of the journals specialized on strategy?

4. Methodology

For the selection of the sample of the journals specialized in PR, we looked in the universe of the seventy-eight (78) journals catalogued in the SSCI–Communication–Journal List database the ones including the words “public relations” or “PR” in their heading or title. We identified two (2) journals that met this requirement: Public Relations Review (also indexed in Scopus) and Journal of Public Relations Research, on which “Many previous meta-analyses studied that examined research trends in public relations exclusively employed these two as their sample” (Seon-Kyoung & I-Huei, 2012: 71).

We proceeded identically with the universe of the one hundred eighty-eight (188) journals of SSCI–Management–Journal List in which title or heading there were the terms “strategy” or “strategic”. Eleven (11) journals complied with these conditions and were added to the sample: Business Strategy and the Environment; Global Strategy Journal; Journal of Economics Management Strategy; Journal of Family Business Strategy (n=4 for the term “strategy”); Advances in Strategic Management–A Research Annual; International Journal of Strategic Property Management; Journal of Strategic Information Systems; Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal; Strategic Organization; Strategic Management Journal; and Technology Analysis & Strategic Management (n=7 for the term “strategic”).

All the searches were done from July 20 to July 23, 2015.

After identifying the journals, we performed a search through the specific browsers of each one of their official websites. We stablished search parameters in the paper’s title, in abstracts and in keywords. Said parameters were “strategy” and “strategic” for the journals specialized in PR -we didn’t consider words derived thereof, such as “strategically” o “strategies”, despite that in some cases they also appeared in analyzed papers-, and “public relations” and “PR” for the journals specialized in strategy -in the Journal of Family Business Strategy we identified the parameter “PR” on different occasions. Evidencing that it referred to the acronym “Performance Related” papers were discarded, not being included in the study -.

The temporary search parameter was delimited to the time period ranged from January 1, 200 and July 15, 2015. The start of the delimitation is justified for the fact that the specialized literature positions at the break of dawn of the new millennium, the broadest development of the academic and professional interest for the strategic praxis of PR and because, from the bibliometrics perspective, it is also there were the massive incorporation to the digital era and digitization of academic journals positions (Cope & Kalantzis, 2009: n/e).

The search of the analysis units was done using the WoS website, in English for the terms of analysis variables, because “the role of English is the major language of modern day science” (Van Leeuwen, 2001: 344), therefore “In 1995, for example, English made up over 95% of publications in the Science Citation Index” (Tardy, 2004: 250), becoming the lingua franca (Yukio, 1992: n/e). Once the journals were determined, the following searches were done from their respective corporate websites, also in English. Subsequently, the papers’ lists were debugged, eliminating duplicities.

Through the content analysis (Krippendorff, 2004; Wimmer & Dominick, 1996) papers’ analysis variables were transferred to a designed ad hoc template, including: (a) journal’s name; (b) volume, number and publication year, (c) authors’ name and surname, (d) authors’ gender, and (e) title of the paper. They were selected following the methodology and bibliographic parameters inspired in Koehler (2001); Castillo & Xifra (2006); Castillo & Carretón (2010); and Marca and others (2014).

Koehler mentions in his research that 62% of papers are written by a single author, followed by two authors (26%), three authors (8%) and more than four (4%). However, this trend modified through the years because in the 50’s the mean was 1.2 authors per paper and in the 90’s it shifted to 1.8 (Koehler, 2001: 122, Cfr. Castillo & Carretón, 2010: 299).

The number of authors that participate in papers increases to 378 out of which, 53.7% corresponds to male authors and 46.3% to female authors. In the variable of authors’ gender there is a difference of 7.4 percentage points: men appear more often than women in scientific journals on communication. If we consider the authors’ gender and the number of undersigning individuals in papers, results evidence that men prefer to write papers alone. From the 203 undersigning men, 52.71% do it this way and 23.15% in collaboration with another one. Regarding women, writing a paper as single undersigning party or in collaboration with another author shows a lower difference than men’s case. From the 175 female authors, 41.7% responds to papers of a single author, compared to 32.57% of papers with two authors. Papers with three or more undersigning parties coincide, from the gender analysis, not showing significant differences whatsoever (Castillo & Carretón, 2010: 310).

The sum of the papers signed up to two authors is shown in 90.2% of papers […] 25.5% of papers of up to two authors concentrate in those of 1 to 8 pages […] Papers signed by three authors entail 5.1%, […]. Those papers signed by more than 3 authors do not obtain a significant representativeness in global data analyzed (Castillo & Carretón, 2010: 317).

5. Methodology limitations

The websites of the totality of journals allow to visualize the research’s analysis variables, except the Journal of Public Relations Research, which does not offer keywords in its papers. On the websites of the journals Public Relations Review and Strategic Management Journal authors’ first names are shown only with their initials, which obliged to perform an individual supplementary search of each one of them through Google and Google Academics browsers (Kousha & Thelwall, 2007; Schroeder, 2007; Harzing & Van Der Wal, 2008) to complete the gender issues [see column 2 of Table 1, Table 2 and Table 6]. 

6. Results

In the descriptive analysis of the double study the results are presented included in tables elaborated by the authors and together with a written description -numeric and in percentages- to make understanding easier.
The tables can be consulted on Internet using their respective links as follows:

Table 1. The term “strategy” in Public Relations Review. https://issuu.com/marc532/docs/tabla_1_5961b28fce4543

Table 2. The term “strategic” in Public Relations Review.  https://issuu.com/marc532/docs/tabla_2_9aa1838d09af53

Table 3. The term “strategy” in Journal of Public Relations Research.

Table 4. The term “strategic” in Journal of Public Relations Research.

Table 5. The terms “public relations” and “PR” in the “strategy” journals.

Table 6. The terms “public relations” and “PR” in the “strategic” journals.

6.1. Results of the terms “strategy” and “strategic” in the public relations journals
6.1.1. Public Relations Review

After eliminating 12 duplicities, we identified 207 valid papers for the study, of which 102 (49.27%) complied with the search requirements “strategy” and 105 (50.72%) with “strategic”. 

We counted a total of 412 authors (average of 1.99 authors/paper). The 102 “strategy” papers were written by 203 authors, out of which 94 (46.30%) were men and 109 (53.69%) women. The 105 “strategic” papers were written by the hands of 209 (50.72%) authors, out of which 82 (39.23%) were men and 127 (60.76%) belonged to the female gender. Out of the total of 207 papers, thus, 176 were written by men (42.71%) compared to the 236 (57.28%) mostly written by female authorship.

“Strategy” papers (n=102) written by 2 authors (48-47.05%), followed by the 34 (33.33%) papers written by 1 author, 15 (14.70%) written by 3 authors, 3 (2.94%) written by 4 authors and 2 (1.96%) of 5 authors. Regarding the “Strategic” papers (n=105) are mainly written by 1 author (48-45.71%), followed by 35 (33.33%) papers written by 2 authors, 15 (14.28%) written by 3 authors and 7 (6.66%) which authorship is thanks to 4 individuals.

In the analyzed period “strategy” and “strategic” papers were published, which met search criteria every year, except in 2001, where no “strategy” paper was published in 2006, where no paper with the “strategic parameter” was published.

In the “strategy” papers (n=102) in 2000 and 2003 a single paper was published (0.98%); in 2002 there were published 2 (1.96%); in 2004, 4 (3.92%); in 2006 and 2007, 5 (4.90%); in 2005 and 2011, 6 (5.88%); in 2010, 7 (6.86%); in 2009 and 2013, 8 (7.84%); in 2015 (until 15.07.15), 9 (8.82%); in 2008, 12 (11.76%); in 2014, 13 (12.74%); and in 2012, 16 (15.68%), being then 2012 the year when more “strategy” papers were published (15.68%).

In the “strategic” papers (n=105) only 1 (0.95%) paper was published in 2001; 2 (1.90%) in 2008; 3 (2.85%) in 2002 and 2003; 4 (3.80%) in 2000; 5 (4.76%) in 2004 and 2015 (until 15.07.15); 6 (5.71%) in 2007 and 2011; 7 (6.66%) in 2010; 8 (7.61%) in 2005 and 2013; 15 (14.28%) in 2009 and 2012; and 18 (17.14%) in 2014 which is, then the year where more papers were published with the “strategic” search criteria (17.14%).
See titles of papers on Table 1 (“strategy”) and Table 2 (“strategic”).

6.1.2. Journal of Public Relations Research

A total of 46 papers were identified, which adapted to the search criteria: 28 “strategy” (60.86%) and 18 “strategic” (39.13%), after debugging duplicities.

The 46 papers were written by a total of 95 authors (average of 2.06 authors/ paper). Out of the 50 “strategy” authors (52.63%), 19 (38.00%) were written by men and 31 (62.00%) by women. Out of the 45 “strategic” authors (47.3%), 24 (53.33%) were men and 21 (46.66%), women.

The 28 “strategy” papers were mainly written by 1 author (13-46.42%) and the 18 “strategic” papers were written predominantly by 2 authors (7-38.88%).

In the analyzed period there were “strategy” y “strategic” papers published almost every year, except in 2001, 2002 and 2007 for “strategy” and in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2010 and 2015 for “strategic”.

Out of the 28 “strategy” papers, the years when more papers were published were 2006, 2008 and 2010 with 4 (14.28%) papers/ year. Out of the 18 “strategic” papers, 2009, 2013 and 2014 where the years with a greater number of published papers (3-16.66%).

See the titles of papers on Table 3 (“strategy”) and Table 4 (“strategic”).

6.2. Results of the terms “public relations” and “PR” in the journals specialized in Strategy
6.2.1. “Strategy” journals

  • Global Strategy Journal; Journal of Economics Management Strategy; and Journal of Family Business Strategy– No paper was identified after using the search parameters “public relations” or “PR” in the analyzed period.

  • Business Strategy and the Environment– We located a single paper that met search parameters, published in 2009 and of a single author, man. The paper titled “Social and Environmental Reporting and the Corporate Ego”, handles about “the results of a qualitative exploration into the target audiences for social and environmental reporting (SER)” and concludes that “broader stakeholders might be targeted with SER only insofar as doing so serves as a perceived endorsement of organizational communications, thereby embellishing the corporate ego’s fantasy of how it would like to be perceived” (Crawford, 2009: 254).

6.2.2. “Strategic” journals

  • Advances in Strategic Management– A Research Annual; Journal of Strategic Information Systems; International Journal of Strategic Property Management; Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal; and Strategic Organization – No paper was identified after using the search parameters “public relations” or “PR” in the analyzed period.

  • Strategic Management Journal- We located a single paper that met the search parameters, published in 2003, by two authors, both men. The paper titled “Mapping moral philosophies: Strategic implications for multinational firms” explains, from the perspective of ethical decision making models how “Strategic managers appear increasingly under pressure from stakeholder concerns regarding social and ethical issues” (Robertson and Crittenden, 2003: 385). None of the authors is PR specialist.

  • Technology Analysis & Strategic Management- Single paper, titled “Meeting the challenge of aviation emissions: an aircraft industry perspective” matched search criteria. Published in 2009, by a single author and a man and, in the context of climate change, it talks about the role that CO2 emissions and NOx of planes play and, in a tangential manner, about the PR campaign about aviation industry boosted by “green lobby groups, other NGOs and parts of the media” (Lawrence, 2009: 80). The author is not specialized in PR.

7. Discussion and conclusions

The research results provide answers to the research questions: there are two journals specialized in PR (2): Public Relations Review y Journal of Public Relations Research (PI1) and those specialized on strategy are eleven (11): Global Strategy Journal; Business Strategy and the Environment; Journal of Economics Management Strategy; Journal of Family Business Strategy; Advances in Strategic Management–A Research Annual; Journal of Strategic Information Systems; International Journal of Strategic Property Management; Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal; Strategic Organization; Strategic Management Journal; and Technology Analysis & Strategic Management (PI2).

There is an abundant consideration of the strategic perspective in the papers of the PR journals (PI3), while the treatment of PR in management journals specialized on strategy is practically nonexistent (PI4), because in the later we only identified 3 papers, out of which 2 handle PR in a tangential or anecdotic manner. We could speculate that, either the totality of identified researchers prefer to publish in the journals of their field, or editors of management journals are not inclined to accept for review papers about main subjects that are distant from management or business administration, as Tardy mentioned (2004: 250): “discourse patterns do not follow the expectations of the gatekeepers, they are more likely to be viewed as non-standard and to be excluded from publication (Bhatia, 1997 & Kaplan, 2001)”.

The time periods when a greater number of papers was published on journals specialized in PR were the years 2012 (“strategy”, 16-15, 68%) and 2014 (“strategic”, 18-17, 14%) for Public Relations Review. And the years 2006, 2008 and 2010 (“strategy” 4-14, 28%) and 2009, 2013 and 2014 (“strategic” 3, 16,66%) for Journal of Public Relations Research (PI5). In Public Relations Review no article was published in the years 2001 and 2006, and in Journal of Public Relations Research the years 2001, 2002, 2003, 2007, 2010 and 2015 (up to 15.07.15).  The scarce presence of papers about PR in the eleven (11) journals specialized on strategy do not allow to extract significant conclusions regarding the periods with a higher number of papers published (PI6).

The gender distribution in Public Relations Review is 92 (46.03%) men and 109 (53.69%) women for “strategy”; and 82 (39.23%) men and 127 (60.76%) women for “strategic”. In Journal of Public Relations Research, it is 19 (38.00%) men and 31 (62.00%) women for “strategy” and 24 (53.33%) men and 21 (46.66%) women for “strategic”. Female authors are prevalent in the group of authors of these two journals (except in the last case), in contradiction with Castillo & Carretón (2010: 310), who identified a supremacy of male authors in their study. Data are not coherent with the gender parity of Spanish journals studied by MÍguez, Baamonde & Corbacho (2014), except in the last case, where it is complied with (PI7). Neither in this occasion it is possible to extract significant conclusions about the authors’ gender of the eleven (11) journals specialized on strategies due to the very scarce volumes published (PI8), although we highlight that the male authorship is complete.

The prevalence of the number of authors by paper in specialized journals on PR is 2 authors (48-47, 05%) for “strategy” and 1 author (48-45, 71%) for “strategic” in Public Relations Review and of 1 author (13-46, 42%) for “strategy” and 2 authors (7-38, 88%) for “strategic” in Journal of Public Relations Research, consistent with Koehler (2001: 122) -1,8 authors in the decade of 1990- and with Castillo & Carretón (2010: 317) -2 authors in 90.00% of cases- (PI9). Regarding the scarce number of authors (4) out of the 3 scarce papers of the 11 journals specialized on strategy it is not possible to extract significant conclusions (PI10).

The titles of papers of journals specialized in PR are allocated in the fifth column of Tables 1, 2, 3 and 4 (PI11) and of the papers of journals specialized on strategy are described in the fifth column of Tables 5 and 6 (PI12).

The bibliometrics analysis shows that the treatment of the strategy applied to PR is very abundant in the two journals specialized in PR, which confirms the reference literature regarding the interest shown by the authors of the sample due to the directive function of PR professionals as heads of an independent department (Prat Gaballí, 1958; Matrat, 1970: 27, 37-49; Arnaldi, 1971: 217; Ugeux, 1973: 32-33; Ledigham & Bruning, 2000; Van Ruler, 2000; Van Ruler and others2000, 2004; Van Ruler & Verčič, 2002, 2004) and, subsequently, regarding their functional limits and their level of responsibility in the design and the execution of the strategic communication plan and their contribution of the corporate strategic plan; about the accountability process and to whom report them hierarchically; as well as its possible Integration in the management committee, consistent with results of the studies ECM-European Communication Monitor (2011) and State of the Profession Survey (2014).

Nevertheless, the interest shown by authors of management journals specialized on strategy points to the opposite direction, because we do not observe that the debate regarding the PR department and the functions and responsibilities of its managerial staff, from any of its possible perspectives regarding business administration in its broader sense, has a similar correspondence in the very scarce, otherwise almost nonexistent papers identified.

Likewise, the interest for other possible thematic orientations of PR of a more general scope and not exclusively focused in the management of communication is confirmed, almost null as well (except, perhaps, of Crawford, 2009) and even though the scarce results do not allow to extract significant conclusions from a statistical perspective, we say that, based on empirical evidence, PR do not constitute the main topic treated, which might have its logic in the fact that none of the authors of the papers is specialist in that field. 

On future researches we intent to perform methodologically identical studies, with wider study samples, such as Scopus; or Latindex, RESH and IN-RECS (*) -not in English language (Van Leeuwen, 2001; Yukio, 1992)-, to obtain evidences and develop, subsequently, successive comparative studies and to identify possible deviations, if any, as a result of the linguistic diversity (Tardy, 2004). 

(*) N. del E.-- In-RECS (group EC3, from the Universidad de Granada, has stopped working a few years ago.

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How to cite this article in bibliographies / References

M Compte-Pujol, K Matilla, S Hernández (2018): “Strategy and Public Relations: a Bibliometric Comparative Study”. Revista Latina de Comunicación Social, 73, pp. 748 a 764.
DOI: 10.4185/RLCS-2018-1280en

Article received on 18 January 2018. Accepted on 15 April.
Published on 19 April 2018.