Global and Multi-National Advertising

By Basil G. Englis | Go to book overview

1
International Advertising Research and International Communication Theory

Elli Lester University of Georgia


IS THERE ANY INTERNATIONAL ADVERTISING THEORY?

The purpose of this chapter is to critique current international advertising research for being uninformed about the status of theory in international communication and to suggest that international advertising research must be placed theoretically within the broader context of international communication research. Theoretically informed research should prove both more interesting and more viable to advertising researchers and practitioners. However, it may also prove more challenging because the theoretical perspective may lead to critical questions that suggest significant dilemmas that the industry itself may not care to pursue.

Critical approaches have been suggested by a number of industry and academic researchers as work that is important and useful, though not immediately practicable. My contention is that critical work (i.e., work that does not necessarily seek to solve an immediate problem and thus, is not product oriented) will in fact prove useful to both academics and practitioners because such work is more analytical, revealing problems of process at the social and cultural levels and at the levels of individual consumers, campaigns, or advertisements. International advertising in particular, linked as it is to political and economic policy decisions, must be analyzed at a theoretically informed level.

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