Decision Making, Communication, and Risk: the Public Opinion Equation

Jean-Pierre Beaudoin
Jean-Pierre Beaudoin
FRI, 10/15/2021 - 3:00PM TO 4:00PM
via Zoom 
Fall 2021 Colloquium Series

What is a « good decision »? How is that judgment made? What role does « Public Opinon » play? All these questions refer to notions that vary with time, context and culture of the population concerned.

Who is the Public? Public opinion is a generational phenomenon. It takes on average 25 years for the underlying values of society to evolve and thus change the priorities of society and its expectations towards authorities of all natures.

What is Communication? The social practice of communication changes with the emergence of new devices. Yet, that is not the essence of change. More determining are the value attached by a society to Communication per se and what the term means, from information, to conversation, to debate : an issue for leadership.

What is Risk? The acceptance of risk, the hierarchy of threats and the time-span on which both notions are considered evolve with the generations and the living experience of accidents or catastrophes.

The proposal is to put the three terms in perspective and highlight key elements affecting governance and leadership issues, as the Public expects authorities to live up to the responsibilities which it assigns to them.

About the Speaker:

Strategic counsellor for public communication since the early 1970s, Jean-Pierre Beaudoin served over the years as a consultant to multinational companies as well as to French government offices.

An Associate Professor Emeritus, he teaches at Paris Sorbonne University School for Communication (Celsa), Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi and Moscow State University – Lomonossov.

He initiated the creation of the French trade organization of PR consultancies in 1988, and chaired the International Communications Consultancy Organization from 1991 until 1993.

He is the author of five books, the latest of which, published in 2017, explores the mechanisms of public opinion’s powers.

Born in 1945, Jean-Pierre graduated from Paris Sorbonne University, the Paris Institute of Political Studies – SciencesPo, and is a post-graduate alumnus of the Paris Sorbonne School for Communication (Celsa).