SOURCE: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

September 06, 2007 14:47 ET

$500,000 Gift, New Faculty, Bring Powerful Media Analysis Technology to the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication

CHAPEL HILL, NC--(Marketwire - September 6, 2007) - Public relations research firms KDPaine & Partners and CustomScoop are giving the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication database access, design capabilities and data valued at $500,000 to bring the most advanced media monitoring and analysis techniques to the school.

The one-year gift supports the teaching and research of newly appointed assistant professor Craig Carroll, who specializes in the relationship between corporate reputation and the news media. Carroll joined the school in August from the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication in Los Angeles.

"We're grateful for this gift and excited about Craig Carroll's arrival to the school," said Jean Folkerts, dean of the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication. "At Carolina, we are redefining journalism and communication education. Great faculty and strong partnerships like this prepare our students to thrive in a rapidly changing media environment."

"The University of North Carolina sends a strong message it is serious about public relations education by adding Craig Carroll to its already impressive public relations faculty," said Donald Wright, professor of public relations at Boston University. "Professor Carroll has tremendous potential and is one of the brightest young scholars in our field."

Media content analysis is increasingly important to organizations in determining how best to reach the people they serve. It is one of the fastest growing areas in the public relations industry today as the growth of digital content produced via online newspapers, Web sites, Web blogs and other sources challenges conventional methods for monitoring and evaluating media content. The gift provides Carroll access to the latest technology for his research and allows students to prepare for careers using the most advanced tools in the industry. This is the first partnership of its kind that both companies have entered with a university.

KDPaine & Partners, a New Hampshire-based firm, provides research tools and communications analysis for organizations including Raytheon, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Epson.

"We want to help students understand how the latest technologies are used to analyze digital media content effectively," said Katie Delahaye Paine, president and CEO of KDPaine & Partners. "We chose to support Craig Carroll, hands-down, because he has demonstrated a real dedication to excellence in teaching, research and service. We know his students will be well-trained to make the most of the technology."

CustomScoop, also based in New Hampshire, produces customizable media monitoring technology and analysis through software, a database of sources and a team of search experts. CustomScoop customers include Fortune 500 companies, public relations and marketing firms, non-profit organizations and sole proprietors.

"Today's students are so computer and Internet savvy that it makes sense to give them the leading technology tools as part of their educational curriculum," said Chip Griffin, CEO of CustomScoop. "When you combine that with a visionary professor like Dr. Carroll, you have a great educational experience for the students."

In the past four years, Carroll's students have received jobs and internships in Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, New York, Hong Kong, Paris, Geneva and Amsterdam.

Carroll, a Nashville, Tenn., native who earned his doctorate from the University of Texas at Austin in 2004, was an assistant professor at USC before being recruited to Carolina. He has served recently as a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge's Judge Business School in England and was the opening speaker for their Global Symposium on Media and Business. In 2005, he won the Andrew W. Mellon Award for Excellence in Mentoring. He is the author of numerous journal articles, book chapters and encyclopedia entries related to corporate reputation and the news media.

"The combined databases and architecture of these two research firms help integrate teaching, research and service in public relations and corporate reputation," Carroll said. "Students will be learning critical skills in the classroom that organizations, policy makers and critics need; but for the research-minded, the ability to aggregate what is observed in the classroom to identify patterns and themes will help those of us interested in advancing knowledge across organizations, industries and sectors."

"Craig Carroll brings an intelligent and disciplined approach to measuring public relations and related disciplines," said Clarke Caywood, professor of integrated marketing communications at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. "His global experience and research will also provide his students and colleagues with a valuable point of view."

The gift counts toward the Carolina First Campaign, a comprehensive, multi-year, private fund-raising campaign that has raised more than $2 billion to support Carolina's vision of becoming the nation's leading public university.

Craig Carroll Web site: http://jomc.unc.edu/craigcarroll

Contact Information

  • School of Journalism and Mass Communication contact:
    Kyle York
    (919) 966-3323
    Email Contact

    KDPaine & Partners contact:
    Peter Kowalski
    (603) 294-4739
    Email Contact

    CustomScoop contact:
    Jeanne Timmons
    (603) 410-5015
    Email Contact