This paper takes the circuit of culture model as the basis for a discussion of the public relations practitioner as cultural intermediary, transcending national and geographic boundaries by drawing on the cultural values of diverse audiences. It discusses the public relations strategies used by NATO in its successful campaign in Kosovo in 1999, with particular attention on the role of the NATO spokesman in the execution of public relations strategies, in terms of the “moments” of production and representation during the campaign. In analysing NATO’s communication strategies during the Kosovo Campaign, the paper examines the organization negotiated culture, identity and power in relation to diverse cultural and national audiences. It contends that the NATO spokesman’s public relations strategy attempted to create a transnational and European cultural framework. It argues that NATO achieved this through discursive positioning of the organization as a humanitarian military powerhouse, and so, at the same time, legitimized its own continuation as a viable supranational organization for the 21st century.
Transcending Boundaries: The Public Relations Practitioner as Cultural Mediator