Public relations ethics: a simpler (but not simplistic) approach to the complexities

Harrison, Karey and Galloway, Chris (2005) Public relations ethics: a simpler (but not simplistic) approach to the complexities. PRism, 3 (1). pp. 1-17. ISSN 1448-4404

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Professional public relations bodies internationally have established ethics codes in an attempt to regulate members' ethical behaviour. This paper critiques the code-based
framework on philosophical and practical grounds, suggesting that such frameworks are inadequate because they leave practitioners free to interpret these guides in ways that advance their own and their clients' interests. We argue that this latitude does not foster ethical
behaviour. We then contrast rule-following, action-based ethics with agent-based ethics, conceived in Aristotelian terms, and suggest that the virtue ethics advanced by Aristotle and his interpreters represents a more challenging
but more authentically ethical path for practitioners to consider.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Copyright statement: The authors have elected, in the interests of open dissemination of scholarly work, to provide this article to you in open access format. This means that, in accordance with the principles of the Budapest Open Access Initiative (, you may freely copy and redistribute this article provided you correctly acknowledge its authors and source, and do not alter its contents.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Arts - Department of Mass Communication
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 00:28
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 22:34
Uncontrolled Keywords: ethics; public relations; virtue ethics; ethics codes
Fields of Research : 15 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services > 1505 Marketing > 150502 Marketing Communications
22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2201 Applied Ethics > 220105 Legal Ethics

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