The role of public relations and public diplomacy in building Libyan relationships with Italy in the Gaddafi and post-Gaddafi era

Saleh, Suliman (2017) The role of public relations and public diplomacy in building Libyan relationships with Italy in the Gaddafi and post-Gaddafi era. Doctoral thesis, Northumbria University.

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Relationships between Libya and Italy, both during and post Colonel Gaddafi’s rule, have witnessed many developments and changes, with the Italian colonialism of Libya from 1911 to 1942/1943 playing an important role in shaping those relationships. Thus, this thesis seeks to examine the roles of Public Relations (PR) and Public Diplomacy (PD) in building the Libyan-Italian relations. In order to explore those roles, the Grunig and Hunt’s (1984) Four PR Models, and the two International Models, have been applied. Furthermore, Relationship Management has been applied as a general theory of PR.

For the purpose of this study, twenty Libyan and Italian diplomats, including Prime Ministers, Foreign Ministers and Ambassadors, were interviewed. Significant attention has been paid to the process of selecting the sample, where the method of purposive sampling has been selected as the most appropriate qualitative method for this study. Moreover, the thematic analysis technique has been applied in order to identify patterns and meaningful themes about the phenomenon under investigation.

The results of this study reveal that PR and PD, as important communication tools, have played a significant role in building the Libyan-Italian relations. Furthermore, it has been made clear that the Libyan and Italian diplomats, had been aware of practising the original four models and the two international models. This study has also found evidence suggesting that these models could be applied to the field of PD. Furthermore, the two-way symmetrical model, the cultural interpreter model and the personal influence model are the most suitable models in building relationships between governments as they are considered to be the bridges that connect PR with PD in terms of theory and practice. Findings of this research have also shown that there are convergences between both fields, especially concerning their roles in building relationships; however, a difference between the fields does also exist.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: L200 Politics
L300 Sociology
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Social Sciences
University Services > Graduate School > Doctor of Philosophy
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2018 15:53
Last Modified: 31 Jul 2021 22:47

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