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Dr Audra Diers-Lawson

Dr Audra Diers-Lawson
Contact Details
Dr Audra Diers-Lawson

Senior Lecturer

Leeds Business School

0113 81 24797

About Dr Audra Diers-Lawson

In her career of more than 20 years, Dr. Diers-Lawson has been a practitioner, researcher and instructor in strategic communication with an emphasis on crisis response and brand management. She is also the Chair of the Crisis Communication Division of the European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA).

As a practitioner, Dr Diers-Lawson has worked across industries like IT, health, agriculture and the public sector in multinational, national, regional and local contexts. For example, she worked with the Applied Materials Shared Services Division on a global change initiative. She has been a part of many projects like the successful campaign for emergency contraception availability in Texas. Additionally, she has worked with small businesses in the agricultural industry to develop effective integrated marketing campaigns -- developing cross-platform public relations and advertising campaigns. She has also lead a team that conducted a strategic communication audit and recommendations for an NHS health trust and part of a team that created a strategic communication toolkit for the European Public Employment Service.

However, Audra's passion lies in research and education. In 2019/2020 she will be bringing out the first comprehensive textbook on risk and crisis communication published by Taylor and Francis. However, her research is also published in a range of highly-respected international journals. She is an active member of ECREA and the European Public Relations Research and Education Association. In conjunction with ECREA, she is hosting Crisis6 at Leeds Beckett University in 2019, which will bring the world's top risk and crisis communication scholars, educators and practitioners to Leeds to discuss risk and crisis communication and management.

As an educator, Dr Diers-Lawson teaches a range of classes at Leeds Beckett but she is also developing research and practice in teaching to support student and young professional development. For example, she is working closely with a software developer to deliver innovative immersive learning experiences like simulations and apps to support the development of communication-oriented soft skills. These are skills that have been identified in industry-based research as predictors of career success. Additionally, she edits the Leeds Beckett Public Relations blog -- which is a showcase of students in the undergraduate and postgraduate public relations programmes here at Leeds Beckett.

Current Teaching

Dr. Diers-Lawson teaches in the Subject Group of Public Relations and Journalism at undergraduate and post graduate levels.

At undergraduate level, she is the module leader for modules like:

  • Issues and crisis management
  • Digital media
  • BA Dissertation
  • Employee engagement

At postgraduate level, she is the module leader for modules like:

  • Digital media
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Issues and crisis management

Research Interests

Dr. Diers-Lawson's research centres on four inter-related lines of research:

  1. More effectively identifying and predicting the nature of relationships between organisations and stakeholders
  2. The ways that crises and crisis response by organisations influence those relationships
  3. How counter-advocacy or counter branding efforts influence those relationships
  4. How to better develop practitioner skills in applied contexts

Selected Publications

Journal articles (7)

Books (1)

  • Diers-Lawson AR (2020) Crisis Communication: Managing Stakeholder Relationships. London: Routledge.

Chapters (5)

  • Diers-Lawson A (2017) Crisis Communication. In: Giles H; Harwood J Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Intergroup Communication. : Oxford University Press, pp. .
    View Repository Record
  • Diers-Lawson AR (2017) Will They Like Us When They're Angry? Antecedents and Indicators of Strong Emotional Reactions to Crises Among Stakeholders. In: Croucher SM; Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk B; Wilson P Approaches to conflict: Mediatized and group dynamics.. : Rowman & Littlefield, pp. 81-136.
    View Repository Record
  • Diers-Lawson AR; Croucher S (2017) Sports, Culture, and Financial Crisis: A cross-cultural comparison of the social media responses of struggling sports associations in the United States and the United Kingdom. In: Austin LL; Jin Y Social Media and Crisis Communication. : Routledge, pp. .
    View Repository Record
  • Diers-Lawson AR (2012) Reconstructing stakeholder relationships using 'corporate social responsibility' as a response strategy to cases of corporate irresponsibility: The case of the 2010 BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico.. In: Tench R; Sun W; Jones B Corporate Social Irresponsibility: A Challenging Concept. : , pp. .
    View Repository Record
  • Diers-Lawson AR; Hatfield K (2011) Shepard's fence: An iconic image examined. In: Ross SD; Lester PM Images that Injure: Pictorial Stereptypes in the Media. : Praeger, pp. 153-162.
    View Repository Record

Conference contributions (6)

  • Diers-Lawson AR; Edwards J (2016) Contesting the meaning of a crisis: Exploring the (dis)connections in the meaning of pandemic disease spread Prague 01/01/0001 00:00:00.
  • Diers-Lawson AR (2016) Cultural discontinuity in crisis communication: Developing a cross-national taxonomy of stakeholder crisis response preferences Prague 01/01/0001 00:00:00.
  • Diers-Lawson AR; Birkholt MJ; Croucher S (2016) Going viral? The influence of message, social media use, and national identity on reputational risk University of Central Florida 01/01/0001 00:00:00.
  • Diers-Lawson AR; Wan Y; Ivanova S; Sotiorpoulou E; Al-Hajiri S (2015) Whose crisis is it anyway? Examining complexity in blame attribution and reputational risk in the airline industry. Lund University in Helsingborg, Sweden 01/01/0001 00:00:00.
    View Repository Record
  • Croucher S; DeMaris A; Diers-Lawson AR; Roper S (2015) Self-reporting and the argumentativeness scale: An empirical examination Lisbon, Portgal 01/01/0001 00:00:00.
  • Diers-Lawson AR; Bruce H (2015) Socially responsible joint venture, brand misconduct and recovery communication: Implications for relationship quality Denver, Colorado 01/01/0001 00:00:00.
    View Repository Record

Conference proceedings (peer reviewed) (1)

  • Diers-Lawson AR; Birkholt MJ; Bruce H (2015) Killer Coca-Cola vs Pouring on the pounds: Comparing the brand damage potential between negative health messaging and counterbranding strategies. In: Academy of Management Sciences annual conference Denver, Colorado 13/05/2015 00:00:00. : , pp. .
    View Repository Record
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