Dr Sian Rees
Associate Professor
Media & Communication
Telephone: (01792) 602636
Room: Office - 404
Fourth Floor
Keir Hardie Building
Singleton Campus

Dr Sian Rees is an Associate Professor at Swansea University specialising in public relations, marketing and branding. She is Head of the Media & Communications academic department and Programme Director for the MA Communication, Media Practice & PR. Sian is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a recipient of the University’s Distinguished Teaching Award and has been delighted to lead the Media & Communication team in improving NSS scores in recent years.

During her London-based industry career Sian worked for Michael Heseltine’s Haymarket Publishing organisation as Publishing Director for the Stuff and What Hi-Fi? Group of magazines and was managing director of her own marketing and PR consultancy. Industry experience has included developing and implementing strategic PR and marketing campaigns for FMCG, retail, entertainment, medical, education and technology sectors. Sian has also worked as the Strategic Marketing Manager here at Swansea University prior to lecturing.

Sian’s teaching focus has been on embedding employability skills and learning within the curriculum and she continues to work with a variety of commercial and public sector organisations to facilitate work placement experience and opportunities for both undergraduate and postgraduate students. She has presented and developed an ontology of employability within higher education.

Sian is delighted to be leading the Media & Communication department in growing its research influence and contribution. She writes academically on public relations ethics and authenticity in branding in the digital media age.

Areas of Expertise

  • Public Relations
  • Branding
  • Corporate Communications
  • Reputation Management
  • Employability in Higher Education

Publications

  1. (2016). An Ontology of Employability Best Practice in Higher Education. Presented at College of Arts & Humanities Employability Conference, Swansea University,
  2. (2014). Authentic or Defensive? The Representation of the BBC. Presented at International History of PR Conference, Bournemouth University,
  3. (2013). BP: A Century of Justification. Presented at International History of PR Conference, Bournemouth University,
  4. An Interpretation of Digital Humanities. In Understanding Digital Humanities.
  5. The Incorporation of Human Nature in Organisational Image. Human Nature

See more...

Teaching

  • MS-100 Introduction to Media Communication

    The module will consider approaches to the study of media and communication which focus variously on institutions, technologies, texts, audiences and policy issues. It will also introduce discussion of what power or powers are wielded through use of media in our culture The module builds to an examination of the effects of new media technologies on 'co-present' and interpersonal communication. The module provides a detailed consideration of media institutions, media 'texts' and media audiences. Here it will focus on issues surrounding the analysis of the power of media institutions; the interpreting or 'reading' of media 'texts'; the study of how media are used and interpreted by audiences/consumers; and attempts by the state and other policy agencies to use, control and censor the media. Finally, basic issues in the implications of the 'new media'/media convergence will be addressed. Please note, students are also expected to attend four film screenings.

  • MS-310 Dissertation Preparation

    This course introduces the practice of dissertation writing and research approaches for the study of media forms. texts and systems and their contribution to social life. It begins to explore the breadth of media studies through attention to the ways in which media matter. In what ways, and how significant are the media in the formation of individual identities and in the practices of everyday life? In the more public world, to what extent are media key to providing knowledge and enabling the debate necessary to the practices of democracy? The course enables students to build on their own experiences of media as consumers and users. But it also encourages critical attention to how the field of media studies has historically been forged: through argument and contestation between different academic approaches and disciplines.

  • MS-311 Dissertation

    This dissertation enables students to engage in long term, in-depth research on a topic of their choice subject to the approval of the Department.

  • MS-M10 Dissertation

    An innovative practice-based alternative to a Masters dissertation. Students are encouraged to develop projects across more than one area of media practice and to do so with dual supervision that embraces both theory and practice. Work produced should be at a professional level, accompanied by a reflective essay and presentation exploring the contextual, theoretical and practical issues raised by the project.

  • MS-M11 MA Project and Dissertation Preparation

    This core module comprehensively prepares students for their Master¿s project or dissertation, which is an integral part of the requirements for the degree. It incorporates several key themes and issues across the communications, media practice and PR industries. It is a challenging, and stimulating module ¿ both for professional practitioners and those new to communications and media practice. The module encourages students to unite theory and practice in productive ways. It introduces students to a number of important research and project management methods essential for undertaking a successful project or dissertation.

  • MS-M13 PR, Branding and Promotion

    The PR, Branding and Promotion module provides a critical overview of the role of public relations and branding practice within contemporary society. It examines best practice across a variety of PR disciplines, whilst simultaneously critiquing the impact of PR and its role within industry, consumer culture and the market place of ideas. In addition the module explores the process of brand creation and promotion and considers how organisations develop and protect brands. The module will appeal to those new to PR and branding, but wishing to broaden their understanding of the creative disciplines, whilst also providing experienced students with a strategic stepping-stone to further their ability to apply best practice.

  • MS-S00 Year in Industry Placement

    Students must complete a minimum of 40 full-time weeks (at least 35 hours per week) on an internship placement within a 'host' organization (up to two weeks holiday may be counted against this total). This may be in any one of a number of commercial or public sector organisations, but the placement will focus on media and communications work experience. All placements will be monitored by staff from Swansea University. The placement will start between 1 June and 31 August and will be completed by 15 August the following year.

  • MS-X211 MS-X211 City University, Hong Kong

    This module is delivered at City University Hong Kong, for those students who partipate in an Exchange Programme

  • MS-X212 MS-X212 City University, Hong Kong

    This module is delivered at City University Hong Kong, for those students who partipate in an Exchange Programme

  • MSP100R Public Relations: Strategic Communications

    Public Relations is a rapidly developing industry, but it remains a challenge for both academics and practitioners to distinguish between those activities which are classed specifically as PR and those that might be determined to be promotion. This introductory module considers definitions of PR and promotion as well as PR theories and history. Providing students with a mixture of theory and practice, the module examines techniques used for PR and promotion and teaches students the fundamentals of creating a promotional campaign. Students will be introduced to specific techniques such as campaign planning, writing a press release and developing creative campaign ideas. Particular emphasis is placed on media relations and the role that PR plays in influencing news agendas and public opinion.

  • MSP200R Public Relations Theory

    There are a number of scholars who are exploring public relations and developing a body of literature that documents PR as an influential force in society. Much of the theory considers the impact this kind of organisational communication has on our world views. This module, through a series of rich and contemporary case studies, considers some of the social, cultural and political consequences of PR, using cultural, rhetorical and systems perspectives as an evaluative framework. The module will also investigate the role of public realtions in political democracy, and the public sphere, and how issue management can be used to change and shape public opinion. The regulatory codes which govern the industry are examined, along with the ethical considerations that practitioners face in terms of social and coporate responsibility. Accountability of the individual practitioner is also considered. Some theories of the related disciplines (marketing, advertising, corporate design) will be unpackaged to locate PR in the context of 'corporate communication'. The impact of new media technology on PR practices and thinking will be also explored.

  • MSP201R Digital Public Relations Practice

    The Digital Public Relations Practice module will introduce students to the skills and knowledge required to develop and deliver a successful public relations campaign, using a series of practical exercises. Despite having a practical focus, the module will also conentrate on public relations at a strategic and management level, so that students can use theory to enhance the crdibility of their practical work. The practical work will simulate a PR consultancy environment and students will experience the roles, responsibilities, organisational structures, protocol and briefings required for creating and running an effective public relations campaign within a new media digital environment. The module will: - introduce the strategies and tactics used in public relations - highlight the importance of market research techniques to PR - introduce and explain the use of digital tactical public relations tools - develop the skills required to build a successful digital campaign - provide an understanding of digital media relations in practice

  • MSP300R Strategy, Marketing and Branding

    This module provides an advanced level introduction to the theories, principles and practical techniques required for effective, integrated marketing and branding campaigns. The key stages in marketing campaign will be explored and attention will be paid to how marketing links to the creation and management of effective brands. Students will investigate the branding of major companies and the challenge this poses for PR and marketing campaigns. Campaigns will be examined using case studies covering a variety of sectors. Branding theory and practice will be examined as a key nexus for both PR and marketing campaigns, enabling students to develop the skills to critically evaluate good and bad practice in order to themselves produce effective creative project work.

  • MSS312 Media & Communication Internship

    The students will spend a minimum of 50 hours on an internship placement within a local 'host' organization. This may be in any one of a number of commercial or public sector organisations, but the placement will focus on media and communications work experience. All placements will be formally arranged and monitored regularly by staff from Swansea University. The placement will be assessed on the basis of three academic assignments: a CV and application letter (20%), a 2,000 word essay on the role and nature of the creative media and promotional industries (50%) and a 1,500 word reflective account and photo diary of the tasks undertaken on the placement in blog format (30%).

Supervision

  • The Use of Public Relations Communication Techniques in Raising Awareness about Breast Cancer in Saudi Arabia and the UK.«br /»«br /»«br /» (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Sian Rees
    Other supervisor: Dr Joanna Rydzewska
  • Exploring the use of digital media (social media/ websites) as PR communications tools by Saudi charities in building a relationship based on mutual trust and transparency. (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Dr Sian Rees
    Other supervisor: Dr Joanna Rydzewska