Michael J. Palenchar, Ph.D., assistant professor in public relations and co-director of the Risk, Health & Crisis Communication Research Unit at the University of Tennessee, has more than two decades of professional and academic public relations experience. Research interests include risk communication and issues management related to industrial and chemical manufacturing, risk communication and food safety and defense, community relations and community awareness of emergency response protocols and manufacturing risks, community right-to-know issues, crisis communication, front groups, and general public relations. He has more than a decade of professional experience working in corporate, nonprofit, and agency environments, and he is also a risk communication and issues management research consultant for clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to local government and nongovernmental agencies. His research has been published in the Journal of Public Relations Research, Public Relations Review, Public Relations Journal, Environmental Communication, and Communication Research Reports, and his first book with co-author Robert L. Heath entitled Strategic Issues Management (2nd edition) was published by Sage in fall 2008. He won the National Communication Association, Public Relations Division’s Pride Award for top published article in the field of public relations with co-authors Robert L. Heath in 2000 and with Kathy Fitzpatrick in 2007. He is also the recipient of the University of Tennessee, College of Communication and Information’s Faculty Research Award in 2008 and Faculty Service/Outreach Award in 2009, as well as the faculty adviser to the PRSSA Sammie Lynn Puett Chapter.
Risk communication and community right to know: A public relations obligation to inform, Public Relations Journal (2008)
Risk communication and community right to know are increasingly important functions of public relations within...
Nature, crisis, risk, science, and society: What is our ethical responsibility?, Environmental Communication: A Journal of Nature and Culture (2007)
In his keynote address, Robert Cox raised key questions, many of which force us to...
Strategic risk communication: Adding value to society (with Robert L. Heath), Public Relations Review (2007)
The purpose of this paper is to provide a concise summary of the evolvement and...
Disclosing special interests: Constitutional restrictions on front groups (with Kathy Fitzpatrick), Journal of Public Relations Research (2006)
Front groups are controversial public relations techniques used by organizations to influence public opinion and...
Terrorism and industrial chemical production: A new era of risk communication (with Robert L. Heath and E M. Oberton), Communication Research Reports (2005)
The increased threat of and heightened concern for terrorist attacks since September 11, 2001 has...
Strategic Issues Management (with Robert L. Heath) (2009)
Contributions to Books
Corporate (social) responsibility and issues management: Motive and rationale for issue disclosure and organizational change (with Robert L. Heath), Handbook of Communication and Corporate Social Responsibility (2010)
Corporate (social) responsibility, risk management and communication (with Robert L. Heath and Tatjana Hocke), Handbook of Communication and Corporate Social Responsibility (2010)
Risk Communication, Handbook of Public Relations II (2010)
Community building through communication infrastructures (with Robert L. Heath and Dan H. O'Hair), Handbook of risk and crisis communication (2009)
Historical trends of risk and crisis communication, Handbook of Risk and Crisis Communication (2009)
Community Narratives during a crisis: The Tennessee Valley Authority ash spill. (with Tatjana M. Hocke), National Communications Association Conference (2010)
Increasing dialogue in disasters: Incorporating social media in risk and crisis communication. (with Shari Veil and Buehner T), National Communications Association Conference (2010)
Social media bookmarking services: Managing and sharing information from a centralized source (with Karen Freberg and Shari Veil), National Communications Association Conference (2010)
Historical evolution of community right to know: Implications on the development and practice of public relations (with Bernardo Motta), Centre for Public Communication Research (CPRC), The Media School, Bournemouth University (2010)
The right-to-know approach to public policy – also known as regulation through revelation – is...