Josef Pallas, Phd, is professor at the Department of Business Studies, Uppsala University.
Also available at
Organizations and organizing in the Medialized Society
The starting point in my research is the increased medialization of the Western economy and the implications this has for the way modern organizations are governed. The increased media coverage has not only changed the relationship between organizations and the media but also the relation with their stakeholders. Despite these developments, there is relatively little theoretical and empirical research that would highlight these changing circumstances and their significance for the way organizations try to respond and manage their environment. In this context, I am especially interested in the way organizations' media activities can be understood as multi-relational and rooted in global practices that bind organizations together not only with the media but also with other stakeholders. Some of the recent studies I am involved in examine mediatization of public sector organizations - especially governmental agencies and universities.
Josef Pallas as been teaching several graduate and executive courses in Organization & Management, Leadership & Management and Strategic & Planned Communications. Josef is involved in research and projects combining insights from Organizational theory and Communication and Media Science. EXPERTISE KEYWORDS: Corporate Communications, Public Relations, Institutional Theory, News Production.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (forthcoming in 2016) Media at the center: Public relations in public administrations in the wake of managerialism. Journal of Public Relations Research.
Fredriksson, M. & Pallas, J. (forthcoming 2016) Introduction – Special Issue: Strategic Communication in Public Sector Organizations. International Journal of Strategic Communication.
Fredriksson, M. & Pallas, J. (forthcoming 2016) Diverging principles for strategic communication in government agencies. International Journal of Strategic Communication.
Pallas, J. Wedlin, L. & Grünberg J. (forthcoming in 2016). Organizations, Prizes and Media. Journal of Organizational Change Management.
Fredriksson, M., Schillemans, T., Pallas, J. (2015) “Determinants of Organizational Mediatization - An Analysis of the Adaptation of Swedish Government Agencies to Newsmedia” Public Administration, 93(4): 1049-1076.
Pallas, J. & Svensson, E. (2016) ”Typical tools for assessment of communicative performance”. Corporate Reputation Review.
Fredriksson, M. & Ohlsson, E-K., Pallas, J. (2014) “Creativity Caged in Translation: A Neo Institutional Perspective on Crisis Communication”. Revista Internacional de Relaciones Públicas/International Journal of Public Relations, 4(8): 43-64.
Fredriksson, M., Pallas, J., & Wehmeier, S. (2013) Public Relations and Neo-institutional theory. Public Relations Inquiry, 2(2): 183-203.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (2013) Corporate Media Work and Micro-Dynamics of Mediatization. European Journal of Communication, 28(4): 420-435.
Grünberg, J. & Pallas, J. (2013) Outside the newsdesk - the embeddedness of business news. Media Culture & Society, 35(2): 216-233.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (2011) Providing, promoting and co-opting: Corporate media work in a mediatized society. Journal of Communication Management, 15 (2): 165-178.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (2014) ”Släpp fram intern kritik”, Uppsala Nya Tidning. 2014-12-11
Pallas, J. (2014) ”The course of media literacy – or when is time to fire the PR-consultant”. Mercury (6) Department of Business Studies. Uppsala University. Uppsala.
Pallas, J. (2013) “Deceptions of consistency - challenges for public sector communication.” Mercury (5) Department of Business Studies. Uppsala University. Uppsala.
Pallas, J. (2013) Media and Mercury (5) Department of Business Studies. Uppsala University. Uppsala.
Pallas. J. & Fredriksson, M. “Rop på samverkan kan leda till korruption”. Svenska Dagbladet. 2014-01-06
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. “Myndigheter polerar fasaden”. Svenska Dagbladet. 2013-05-16
Books & Reports
Pallas, J., S. Johnsson & L. Strannegård (red.) (2014) Organizations and the Media – Organizing in a Mediatized World. New York, Routledge.
Pallas, J & Fredriksson, M. (2014) Den medialiserade myndigheten - en analys av medialiseringens konsekvenser för nationella förvaltningsmyndigheter i Sverige. Division of Journalism. Science Research Report. Gothenburg University, Gothenburg.
Pallas, J & Fredriksson, M. (2013) Med synlighet som ledtjärna: en analys av vilka principer som styr kommunikationsarbetet i nationella förvaltningsmyndigheter. Division of Media and Communication Science Research Report 2013:1. Uppsala University, Uppsala.
Pallas, J. & Strannegård, L. (red.) (2010) Företag och Medier. Liber. Malmö.
Pallas (2007) Talking Organizations: Corporate Media Work and Negotiation of Local Practice. Department of Business Studies. Uppsala, Uppsala University. Doctoral Thesis.
Grafström M., J. Grünberg, J. Pallas, K. Windell (2006) Ekonominyhetens Väg: Från kvartalsrapporter till Ekonominyheter. SNS-förlag. Stockholm.
Fredriksson, M. & Pallas, J. (forthcoming) The localities of mediatization. How organizations translate the ideas of media in everyday practices. In: Hjarvard, S., Bolin, G., Hepp, A. & Driessens, O. (eds) Dynamics of mediatization: Understanding cultural and social change’ enclosed. Boston: Wiley-Blackwell.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (forthcoming) Mediatization of public sector. In: Luoma-aho, V. & Canel, M-J. (eds) Handbook of Public Sector Communication. Boston: Wiley-Blackwell.
Pallas, J. (2016) ”On John Mayer” in Ihlen, Ø. & Fredriksson, M. (eds.) Public Relations and Social Theory: Key Figures, Concepts and Issues (2nd ed.). London: Routledge.
Fredriksson, M. & Pallas, J. (2016) ”Translating Public Relations” in Coombs T. W., Holladay, S. J. & Dodd, M. D. (eds.) Handbook of Public Relations Theory and Methods. Boston: Wiley-Blackwell.
Pallas, J. (2016) ”Divided we stand - Akademiska ledares idéer om vad vi har universitet till” in Wedlin, L. (red) Det styrda universitet. Perspektiv på styrning, autonomi och reform av svenska lärosäten. Stockholm, Santérus Förlag.
Pallas, J & Bartlett, J. (2015) ” Accreditations & Certifications”. in Craig E. Carroll (ed.) The SAGE Encyclopedia of Corporate Reputation. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
Pallas, J. (2015) ”Mediatization and Corporate Reputation”. in Craig E. Carroll (ed.) The SAGE Encyclopedia of Corporate Reputation. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
Pallas, J. (2015) ”Mediatization”. in Debra Merskin & J. Geoffrey Golson (eds.) The SAGE International Encyclopedia of Mass Media and Society. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
Pallas, J., Fredriksson, M. & Wehmeier, S. (2014) ”Public Relations and Neo-institutional theory”. in R. L. Heath and A. Gregory (red.) Strategic Communication - SAGE Benchmarks in Communication. London, Sage Publications.
Pallas, J., Fredriksson, M. & Wehmeier, S. (2014) Public Relations and Neo-institutional theory in R. L. Heath and A. Gregory (red.) Strategic Communication - SAGE Benchmarks in Communication. London, Sage Publications.
Ihlen, Ø. & Pallas, J. (2014) “Mediatization of Corporations” in Lundby, K. (ed) Mediatization of Communication. Berlin, De Gruyter.
Pallas, J & Fredriksson, M. (2014) “Strategic Communication as Translation and Institutional Work” in Holtzhausen, D. & A. Zerfass (red.) The Routledge Handbook of Strategic Communication. London, Routledge.
Pallas, J., Jonsson, S. & Strannegård, L. (2014) “Media and Organizations – Images, Practices and Organizing” in Pallas, J., S. Johnsson & L. Strannegård (red.) Organizations and the Media: Organizing in a mediatized world. Routledge. New York, Routledge.
Pallas, J (2014) “Media enactments: where to look for inspiration in mediatization studies” in Pallas, J., S. Johnsson & L. Strannegård (red.) Organizations and the Media: Organizing in a mediatized world. Routledge. New York, Routledge.
Pallas, J & Fredriksson, M. (2013) “Med synlighet som ledtjärna: en analys av vilka principer som styr kommunikationsarbetet i nationella förvaltningsmyndigheter.” Division of Media and Communication Science Research Report 2013:1. Uppsala University, Uppsala. ISSN 1403-7572.
Pallas, J. & Wedlin, L. (2013) “Organization and governance of science in Mediatized Society” in: Drori, G., M. Höllerer & P. Walgenbach (red.) Organizations and International Management: Global themes and local variations. New York, Routledge.
Bartlett J, Frostensson, M. & Pallas, J. (2013) “Reputation Rankings, Certifications and Accreditations” in Carroll, C. (ed.) Handbook of Communication and Corporate Reputation. New York, Wiley-Blackwell.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (2011) “Ett neoinstitutionellt perspektiv på strategisk kommunikation” in: Falkheimer, J. & M. Heide (red) Strategisk kommunikation: Perspektiv, praktik och praxis. Lund. Studentlitteratur.
Pallas, J. & Strannegård L. (2010) “Ett Medialiserat Näringsliv” in Pallas J. & L. Strannegård (red.) Företag och Medier. Liber. Malmö.
Grünberg J. & Pallas, J. (2010) “Utanför nyhetsdesken: om nyhetsproduktion som interaktivt kretslopp” in Pallas J. & L. Strannegård (red.) Företag och Medier. Liber. Malmö.
Pallas J. (2010) “Informatörer och Medierna” in Pallas J. & L. Strannegård (red.) Företag och Medier - Om näringslivets medialisering. Stockholm, Liber.
Grünberg J. & Pallas, J. (2009) “Barbarians at the Gates? Organizations Protecting and Promoting Their (Non)Technical Cores through Institutional Boundary-Spanning” in Wedlin, L., Sahlin, K. & Grafsröm, M. (red.) Exploring the Worlds of Mercury and Minerva: Essays for Lars Engwall. ACTA UNIVERSITATIS UPSALIENSIS, Studia Oeconomiae Negotiorum 51., Uppsala, Uppsala Univeristy Press.
Grafström M. & Pallas, J. (2007) “Negotiation of Business News” in Kjaer, P. & Slaatta, T. (red.) Mediating Business: The Expansion of Business Journalism in the Nordic Countries. Copenhagen Business Press, Copenhangen.
Conference proceedings (last 3 years)
Fredriksson, M. & Pallas, J. (2015) Governmental communication in the wake of mediatization. International Journal of Press/Politics Conference, 17th - 18th September 2015, Oxford.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (2015) Public Relations in the wake of managerialism - Why career managers of public administrations are more eager to control their own and their organization’s media activities compared to field professionals. 22nd International Public Relations Symposium BLEDCOM 2015 – July 3-4, 2015. Bled, Slovenia.
Pallas, J. (2015) ”Mediability and Public Sector Organizations", 2015 Academy of Management Meeting, August 7-11, 2015. Vancouver, Canada.
Pallas, J. (2014) ”The coherent multiversity”. ECREA's 5th European Communication Conference - 12 to 15 November 2014. Lisabon, Portugal.
Pallas, J. (2014) ”Responses to mediatization – a case of Swedish governmental agency”. 30th EGOS Colloquium, Reimagining, Rethinking, Reshaping: Organizational Scholarship in Unsettled Times. July 3–5, 2014, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (2014) ”Factors Contributing to the Mediatization of Public Administrations - An Analysis of how Swedish Governmental Agencies Relates to News Media”. ECREA TWG Mediatization Workshop, ‘Rethinking the Mediatization of Politics’. London School of Economics, Friday 25th and Saturday 26th April 2014, London, England.
Pallas, J. & Svensson, E. (2014) “Corporate Media Work and Lobbying” in Garsten, C. & A. Sörbom (red) Political Affairs: Bridging Markets and Politics.The 4th Govemark network workshop : Political Affairs: Bridging Markets and Politics , Copenhagen Business School, Dept. of Communication and Management Copenhagen, Denmark October 10‐11, 2013
Pallas, J., Fredriksson, M. & Ohlsson, E-K. (2013) “Creativity Caged in Translation:A Neo-Institutional Perspective on Crisis Communication”. EUPRERA 2013 - Strategic Public Relations. Public Values and Cultural Identity. October 3-5, 2013, Barcelona, Spain.
Pallas, J. & Lövgren, D. (2013) “ Blogging for Reputation: An analysis of how Swedish universities address different governing system via social media”. The 22nd Nordic Academy of Management Conference - Governance of Modern Universities. 21-23 August, Reykjavik, Iceland.
Pallas, J. & Svensson, E. (2013) “Typical tools for assessment of communicative performance.” The 2013 IRSPM conference - Public Sector Responses To Global Crisis: New challenges for politics and public management? 10-12th April, Prague, Czech Republic.
Pallas, J. & M. Fredriksson (2012) “ Justifications of communication in an inconsistent world. An analysis of corporate communication in Swedish governmental agencies”. Paper to be presented at European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA), 24-27 October, 2012, Istanbul, Turkey.
Pallas, J. & M. Fredriksson (2011) “Strategic Communication as an Institutionalized Myth”. Paper presented at the 2011 International Communication Association. May 26, 2011 in Boston, Mass., USA.
Pallas, J., Bartlett, J. & Kjaer, P. (2011) “Dynamics of Legitimacy and Reputation in Practice” paper presented at the 27th EGOS Colloquium, Göteborg 6-9 July, 2011.
Pallas, J. & M. Fredriksson (2011) Corporate Media Work and the Dynamics of Medialization. Paper presented at the Mediatized Worlds: Culture and Society in a Media Age. April 14-15, 2011 – Friday, University of Bremen, Haus der Wissenschaft, Germany.
Ongoing work (selection)
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (under review) Deceptions and limits of consistency: A neo-institutional perspective on integrated communication in governmental agencies.
Pallas, J. & Fredriksson, M. (bok) Organisations kommunikation i offentlig sektor. Studentlitteratur. Lund.
Pallas, J., Buhr, H., Jonsson, S. (2015) ”Corporations and the media”. in Engwall, L. Grünberg, J. & Sahlin, K. (eds.) Corporate Governance in Action. Bokmanuskript.
The starting point for a major part my research is the societal process that is commonly referred to as mediatization and the consequences this process has for the way contemporary organizations operate and are governed. Broadly defined, mediatization captures a process whereby society and actors within it to an increasing degree become intertwined with the media and their working logic. Mediatization addresses not only changes in the way media and organization within different societal sectors (business, welfare sector, research & education, religion) relate to each other. Mediatization also creates new conditions influencing how the different sectors and organizations within these organize and conduct their different activities both individually as well as collectively.
In collaboration with Swedish and international colleagues, I have in recent years begun to approach mediatization from a comparative and multi-level perspective to capture the complexity of dynamics in which mediatization comes in, influence and is acted upon in organizations of various types – mainly public sector organizations, universities and corporations. This work takes place along two analytical approaches: 1) mediatization as a result of an increased number of organizational activities and preferences that change the way organizations and their members understand themselves, define relevant objectives and priorities, allocate resources and structure their operations and 2) mediatization as an institutional process that fundamentally changes the conditions for relations within and between organizations in various fields or societal sectors.
In more general terms, I seek to understand and explain how mediatization as a social process that aside, along with, or in opposition to other social processes evokes a special form and type of organizational change with subsequent consequences on the individual, organizational and field level. It is possible to describe my research on mediatization as divided into three types of empirical studies: a) how different types of organizations - mainly those in the public sector - design and organize their activities in relation to the media; b) the creation and dissemination of (business) news and the importance of news coverage for how organizations are perceived and interpreted by various stakeholders; and c) the dynamics and consequences of processes that are parallel or directly connected to mediatization, and that include organizational strive for attributes such as prestige, legitimacy, reputation, visibility, attention, image and status.
Parallel to - and partially derived from- my work on mediatization of public sector organizations, I have in recent years got involved in studies on control and governance of organizations within the field of higher education and research. In these studies, we seek to explore how new governance models (e.g. reforms, regulations, management ideas) enter Swedish universities, and how these models affect the way in which universities are organized, structured and managed. Here I am particular interested in the way universities increasingly come to be transformed into real organizations, i.e. how universities are both constructed and communicated as complete organizations with unique identities, clear formal structures, and capable of rational decisions. Another issue that we study in this context is the expansion of university administration. In this context, my focus is on the processes of replacing decision-making based on academic values with routines and practices streaming from administrative needs and preferences.
Scientific progression and international contributions
Theoretically I get my inspiration and knowledge mainly from organizational research literature on public governance, as well as media and communication studies. The main theoretical points concern areas such as institutional change, governance, organization, and audit and evaluation. Here I combine insights from various research fields, thus contributing to a more coherent understanding of mediatization as an important social phenomenon.
By way of continuously contributing to conferences in two fields – i.e. organizational theory (e.g. EGOS and Academy of Management) and media and communication studies (e.g. ICA and ECREA) - and by participating in research projects involving scientists from various disciplines, I work consciously to integrate and develop a deeper and more informed understanding of the above presented empirical phenomena. The results of this integration work can be seen in several of the anthologies that I have edited or contributed to. I usually seek to work with prominent international researchers representing different disciplines where mediatization and various aspects of organizing are studied. The overall aim is to address studies of organizing and mediatization as a part of a multi-disciplinary and multi-level research agenda. Other examples of the international relevance and reach of my research includes publication of our results in recognized international journals such as Organization Studies, Journal of Organizational Change Management, Corporate Reputation Review, Media, Culture & Society, Journal of Public Relations Research, and in prestigious handbooks, encyclopedias and anthologies. I also regularly organize seminars and conference tracks together with international scholars – an activity that often paves the way for joint publications and collaborations. A few examples include here special issues in journals such as Public Relations Inquiry and International Journal of Strategic Communication where I serve as a guest editor. On regular basis I’m also involved in organizing of workshops, panels and tracks at conferences such European Group of Organizational Studies (EGOS) and the International Communication Association (ICA). I’m also a member of a group of international researchers that organize an upcoming forum in Management Communication Quarterly on the topic ‘Communicative Inconsistency as Organizational Practice’.
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