Page Center announces 2021 grants on corporate social advocacy, ethics of care and activism

April 1, 2021 • Jonathan McVerry

Call Image 2021

The Arthur W. Page Center announced the recipients of its 2021 Page/Johnson Legacy Scholar Grants. This year’s call included two areas of research (Corporate Social Advocacy and Ethics of Care) and a call for curriculum development (Activism).

The 17 funded research projects will expand the knowledge and understanding in these important communications topics. The four curriculum grants will enhance online education opportunities in activism.

The senior research fellows leading the calls are associate professor at the University of South Carolina Holly Overton (Corporate Social Advocacy), and assistant professor at Penn State
Stephanie Madden (Ethics of Care and Activism Curriculum).

“The topics in this year’s call have become common themes in industry and academic conversations,” said Denise Bortree, Page Center director.  “These projects strengthen ethical- and responsible-thinking in public communication, which is the Center’s mission. We look forward to seeing the discoveries our incredible scholars learn through their timely and innovative research projects.”

In August, this year’s scholars will be invited to present their projects to the Page Center advisory board as part of the Center’s annual Research Roundtable. Scholars will give the 15-member board the opportunity to view the research in its early stages. Next year, at the end of the term, the scholars will present their results. Scholars from the previous call will be presenting their results as part of this year’s meeting.

The Page Center has funded more than 250 scholars since its founding in 2004. While research themes vary from year to year, the Center consistently supports academic exploration into the understanding of principles practiced in public communication.

Visit the 2021 call for research proposals page for more information on each call.

The 2021 Page Center Research Grants on Corporate Social Advocacy

Moderated by Dr. Overton (

Assessing factors that affect activists’ perceptions of corporate social advocacy authenticity
Nicole O’Donnell, Virginia Commonwealth University and Yanni Ma, Oregon State University

Building an audience-centric framework of situational corporate social advocacy strategy: A mixed-method approach
Jiun-Yi Tsai, Northern Arizona University; Ioana Alexandria Coman, Texas Tech University; and Shupei Yuan, Northern Illinois University

Communicating CSA with supporters and opponents: Exploring the extended Social Identity Model of Collective Action and the role of identity
Anli Xiao, University of South Carolina and Christen Buckley, Penn State University

Communicating for justice and equality: Women's sport and corporate social advocacy
Dunja Antunovic and Nicole M. LaVoi, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; Nancy Lough, UNLV; Ann Pegoraro, University of Guelph; and Katie Lebel, Ryerson University

Companies getting political: Public-company identity similarity and its influences on public reactions to corporate social advocacy initiatives
Hao Xu, Jisu Huh, and Hyejoon Rim, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

Conceptualization and measurement: A scale for measuring consumer perceptions of corporate social advocacy
Melissa Dodd, University of Central Florida

Exploring the role of self-transcendent media experiences in corporate social advocacy: Analyzing its dimensions and testing its effects
Alan Abitbol, University of Dayton and Matthew VanDyke, University of Alabama

Investigating the effect of CSA on organization-public relationships: Focusing on CSA forms and message sources
Joon Kyoung Kim, University of Rhode Island and Won-Ki Moon, University of Texas at Austin

Understanding CSA from the perspectives of public relations professionals and employees: An application of a co-orientation model
Hyejoon Rim, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities; Moonhee Cho, University of Tennessee; and Katie Haejung Kim, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

The 2021 Page Center Research Grants on Ethics of Care

Moderated by Dr. Madden (

Building meaningful relationships: Development and application of an ethics of care scale to advance organization-public relationships
Melanie Formentin, Towson University

Examining the influence of ethics of care & servant leadership in public relations
Marlene Neill, Baylor University and Juan Meng, University of Georgia

“In solidarity”: Campus community organizing as an ethics of care practice
Teri Del Rosso, University of Memphis

Organizational ethics of care for employees: Scale development and validation
Weiting Tao and Yeunjae Lee, University of Miami

Patient influencers: The morality of paid influence in pharmaceutical advertising
Erin Willis, University of Colorado-Boulder; Erin Schauster, University of Colorado-Boulder; Maria Len-Rios, University of Georgia;  and Marjorie Delbaere, University of Saskatchewan

Toward a caring government: Examining public relations practitioners’ approaches to ethics of care in the public sector
Chuqing Dong, Michigan State University and Jordan Morehouse, Clemson University

The road less travelled: Toward building an agent-based approach to ethics of care for public communication
Jane Johnston, University of Queensland and Jenny Zhengye Hou, Queensland University of Technology, Australia

"Who cares?” Questioning the ethic of care in disaster crisis communication in Indonesia
Gregoria Arum Yudarwati, Meganusa Prayudi Ludvianto and Ina Nur Ratriyana, Atma Jaya University-Yogyakarta

The 2021 Page Center Curriculum Grants on Activism

Moderated by Dr. Madden (

Brands, digital media and policy advocacy
Alison Novak, Rowan University

Parallels among public interest communication, cause communication and activism
Brigitta Brunner, Auburn University and Corey Hickerson, James Madison University

Shareholder activism as force for good
Alexander Laskin, Quinnipiac University

Social media activism through the lens of #BlackLivesMatter
Jasmine Roberts, Ohio State University