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The Situational Theory of Publics in a Different Cultural Setting: Consumer Publics in Singapore

The Situational Theory of Publics in a Different Cultural Setting: Consumer Publics in Singapore In an ever-globalizing world, it behooves one to ask whether, and if so to what extent, the theoretical constructs developed primarily in Western democracies are applicable elsewhere. This study used the Situational theory of publics to assess the communication behaviors of a sample of Singaporeans vis-à-vis the level of customer service in the retail sector. The study surveyed 242 retail customers and conducted 3 focus groups of retail consumers. Results revealed that the situational theory was quite useful in identifying the communication behaviors of consumer publics in Singapore. A majority of the respondents perceived high problem recognition but also displayed constrained behavior in responding to the problem. Only a few respondents exhibited activist behavior as described in the theory. Cultural factors such as deference to authority and collectivism played a significant role in the constrained behaviors of the respondents. We contend that the referent criterion, abandoned for over 2 decades, helps include culture as an independent variable in the theory. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Public Relations Research Taylor & Francis

The Situational Theory of Publics in a Different Cultural Setting: Consumer Publics in Singapore

26 pages

The Situational Theory of Publics in a Different Cultural Setting: Consumer Publics in Singapore

Abstract

In an ever-globalizing world, it behooves one to ask whether, and if so to what extent, the theoretical constructs developed primarily in Western democracies are applicable elsewhere. This study used the Situational theory of publics to assess the communication behaviors of a sample of Singaporeans vis-à-vis the level of customer service in the retail sector. The study surveyed 242 retail customers and conducted 3 focus groups of retail consumers. Results revealed that the situational...
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Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN
1532-754X
eISSN
1062-726X
DOI
10.1080/10627260701402424
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In an ever-globalizing world, it behooves one to ask whether, and if so to what extent, the theoretical constructs developed primarily in Western democracies are applicable elsewhere. This study used the Situational theory of publics to assess the communication behaviors of a sample of Singaporeans vis-à-vis the level of customer service in the retail sector. The study surveyed 242 retail customers and conducted 3 focus groups of retail consumers. Results revealed that the situational theory was quite useful in identifying the communication behaviors of consumer publics in Singapore. A majority of the respondents perceived high problem recognition but also displayed constrained behavior in responding to the problem. Only a few respondents exhibited activist behavior as described in the theory. Cultural factors such as deference to authority and collectivism played a significant role in the constrained behaviors of the respondents. We contend that the referent criterion, abandoned for over 2 decades, helps include culture as an independent variable in the theory.

Journal

Journal of Public Relations ResearchTaylor & Francis

Published: Aug 28, 2007

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