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Published on February 11th, 2008 | by Simon Wakeman


Choosing a public relations dissertation topic

I’ve reached the final hurdle in my CIPR Diploma studies – researching and writing the 6000 word personal project.

The personal project looks like a great opportunity to put everything I’ve learnt so far into action, and do some real in-depth research into a topic that’s interesting and useful for me as a student and practitioner.

I’m keen to research a subject that’s relevant to my day job, so I’ve been thinking of the following as a title:

“What is the role of social media in local government communications?”

There’s real potential for the use of social media for local government to communicate and consult more effectively with local audiences. However to date the sector’s adoption of social media has been slow and patchy.

In my research I hope to draw on UK and international case studies to understand how social media can play a role in helping local government communicate, particularly with audiences that it does not traditionally communicate effectively with.

I need to start thinking about my research methodology, but what do you think about this topic? Are there any must-see resources for public sector use of social media that you can point me towards? Do you have any examples of how your local council has used social media?

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This article originally appeared on Simon Wakeman’s communications, marketing and public relations blog at


About the Author

I write on my blog about all kinds of things. Mostly it's focussed on communications, marketing and digital stuff - as that's what I spend my days doing and evenings thinking about. But sometimes I'll cover running, mountain biking, road biking or geeky gadgets too.

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  • About Simon

    Simon WakemanSimon is Agency Director at digital agency Deeson and writes for the agency blog on all things digital.

    He’s a CIPR and CIM qualified digital, communications and marketing professional with experience working across the full communications mix in the public and private sectors.

    Outside work he enjoys running, road cycling, mountain biking, caravanning and generally being outdoors. Simon is married with two children, has two energetic dogs and lives near Canterbury, Kent.

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