The purpose of this paper is to explore two questions: 1) Is symmetrical communication in public relations practice inherently ethical? 2) Is symmetrical communication effective in terms of public relations effectiveness and organizational effectiveness? Three surveys are undertaken to test seven research hypotheses for the purpose of a cross-validation of research findings. The results suggest that symmetrical communication is inherently ethical. Moreover, symmetrical communication indeed contributes to several performance measures, which include favorable organizational reputation, positive media exposure, positive market performance, overall organizational effectiveness, conflict resolution, and crisis management.
The annual conference of the International Communication Association