I work as a senior lecturer, researcher and consultant in strategic communication and public relations. I am also an occasional creative writer, having recently published a novel, Growing Up With Books.
My academic research interest and teaching is primarily focused on strategic positioning in public communication and public relations.
I have a new academic book released: Positioning Theory and Strategic Communications: A new approach to public relations research and practice. (Follow the link for information, reviews and purchase information).
I joined the School of Design, Communication and IT at the University of Newcastle (UoN), Australia, in 2006. Prior to this I worked as a consultant and in senior communication management roles in government (Australian Greenhouse Office, Australian Electoral Commission, Australian Bureau of Statistics), health and financial services sectors. I have won several national and state awards for my communication campaigns, including the PRIA Golden Target Award.
I am a member of the Hunter Creative Industries and Technology Centre based at the University of Newcastle.
I have published in the area of strategic communication and positioning theory in journals such as The Journal of PR Research, Public Relations Review, Public Relations Inquiry, Asia Pacific Public Relations Journal and PRism. I have authored the chapter on strategy in Public Relations Theory and Practice (Chia & Synnott, 2009, 2012). I am also the author of the books, Public Relations (2006) and Careers@Gov (2007).
My book (Routledge, UK) on Positioning Theory and Strategic Communication was published in June 2014. I have presented peer reviewed research papers at conferences including International Communication Association, Bledcom PR Research Symposium, Barcelona International PR Meeting and the ANZ Communication Association.
I am currently primary supervisor of three PhD candidates, one M.Phil candidate and am co-supervising three other PhD candidates. I also supervise honours years students in communication and public relations research projects each year.
Employment history and educational qualifications can be found here (opens in new window). I am a member of the Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA) and sit on the National Education Advisory Committee for PRIA.
I live in Newcastle, Australia – a fabulous city situated on a beach and a harbour! You can follow me on Twitter @melanie_james