“Doing Good” Scholarship: Considerations for Building Positive Social Change Through the Emerging Field of Public Interest Communications

Edward Downes


Recognizing the birth and potential of the emerging field of public interest communications (PIC), and building on Fessmann’s work summarizing the field’s foci presented elsewhere in this journal, this article offers 10 considerations for PIC’s proponents to think about as the field’s body of knowledge begins to grow. These considerations suggest we consider that: doing good is a relative concept; interdisciplinary scholarship has great value; understanding practitioners’ lives in the field will enhance PIC scholarship; organizing PIC scholars will empower them; social media empower advocacy; a humanistic philosophy should drive the field’s research and teaching; multiple actors in the public policy process influence PIC; and being a do-gooder might not be such a bad thing.


Public interest communications; Social change; Public policy; Advocacy

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