Public relations and aca-media: Autoethnography, ethics and engagement in the pharmaceutical industry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article presents an autoethnography, which emerged as I shifted from being a journalist to an academic researcher investigating the role of power and communication in pharmaceutical regulation. It presents a critical, personal and reflexive account of the opportunities and challenges faced while gathering and presenting data for a doctoral thesis in my dual role as a ‘hackademic’. It also traces my subjective experiences as I made sense of my hybrid professional identity, and explains how analytical autoethnography may be used as a research method to enable the researcher’s experiences to become the topic under investigation. The aim of this research is to explore the tensions that may arise when a journalist becomes an academic, and the relationship between the public relations (PR) practitioner and the journalist. My work flags up differences between codes of ethics for research, PR and journalism, and details the challenges I encountered navigating my way through these differences. The articles also contributes to the hybrid identity and careers literature by expounding some of the struggles that may be encountered during the transition from practitioner to academic.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-136
JournalPublic Relations Inquiry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 25 Mar 2014


  • autoethnography
  • careers literature
  • ethics
  • hackademic
  • hybrid identity professional
  • journalism
  • pharmaceutical industry
  • public relations
  • PR


Dive into the research topics of 'Public relations and aca-media: Autoethnography, ethics and engagement in the pharmaceutical industry'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this