QUT Professor Wins International Award For Outstanding Work In IMC

QUT Professor Wins International Award For Outstanding Work In IMC
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine



Professor Gayle Kerr from QUT’s School of Advertising, Marketing, and Public Relations has been honoured with an international award for her work in teaching, theory and practice of integrated marketing communication (IMC).

The inaugural Don Schultz Award was administered by America’s Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, and Integrated Marketing Communication.

The prestigious international award recognises university faculty and marketing professionals who have demonstrated excellence in teaching the principles of IMC and bridging the gap between the academic and commercial sectors.

“We considered several candidates who have made great contributions as scholars, as practitioners, or as educators,” said Medill Assistant Professor Judy Franks, who sat on the selection committee.

“Like Don himself, Gayle Kerr embodies all three qualities. We celebrate her body of scholarship, her collaboration on important work in both the academy and industry and her tireless efforts to inspire the next generation.”

Professor Kerr (featured image) said the award had a special connection to QUT.

“Don Schultz was an adjunct professor at QUT for many years. He also founded the discipline of IMC in which QUT is a national leader,” said Kerr, who also received a cash prize of $5000 and who will give a presentation of her work at Medill in June.

“Don has always been a part of my academic life, from examining my PhD thesis to working on research together, to presenting at conferences, to inspiring my students.

“I learned so much from Don and tried my best because of him. Winning an award from such a prestigious institution as Northwestern Medill is an exceptional honour but winning an award in the name of someone who set the trajectory of my career feels like Don’s final endorsement.”

For those unaware, IMC is the process which combines marketing communication elements, such as PR, social media, audience analytics, business development principles, and advertising, into a brand identity that remains consistent across distinct media channels.

Professor Kerr is currently working on developing a global model of advertising self-regulation for the digital world, and understanding how people engage and avoid paid, earned and owned media.

As a teacher, she has introduced many innovations including the first postgraduate advertising and IMC courses in Australia and the first advertising digital units at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.

The recent win continues Professor Kerr’s string of achievements. In 2016, the former advertising copywriter turned academic was awarded Australia’s highest university teaching award, the AAUT Teaching Excellence Award.

This was followed in 2017 by the QUT Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence. Professor Kerr is also the only non-US teacher to win the prestigious American Academy of Advertising Billy I. Ross Award for Education.

The Don Schultz award is named after long-time Medill Professor Don Schultz, who was internationally regarded as the “father of IMC”.

Schultz, who died in 2020, established the IMC department at Medill in the early 1990s, making it the first school to offer a graduate degree in the field in the United States.




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