Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. in Public Relations


Public Relations & Advertising


Ric Edelman College of Communication & Creative Arts

First Advisor

Bagin, Donald


Tobacco industry--Public relations


Public Relations and Advertising


The study's major purpose was to improve the quality and reputation of public relations practice in private industry. The study examined needed improvements m public relations by focusing on the ineffectual and negative practices of the tobacco industry, Also, the study reviewed public and media perceptions of tobacco companies.

The research involved telephone inquiries, information from not-for-profit organizations, and a review of 108 publications using the headings, "Public Relations" and "Tobacco Industry."

Other research included an opinion survey administered to 100 undergraduate students at Rowan College of New Jersey.

Survey results found that a majority of students, smokers, and nonsmokers believed that public relations practice in the tobacco industry was "Unfavorable."

Conclusions indicated that unethical public relations practice in the tobacco industry reflected on the reputation of the company and the public relations practitioner. Other conclusions determined that public relations in the industry countered the standards adopted by the Public Relations Society of America.

Recommendations for public relations practitioners were to promote openness throughout the tobacco industry, eliminate tobacco advertisements appealing to teenagers, consider alternative uses for tobacco, and compensation to consumers harmed by tobacco.