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Title: Getting an edge : corporate branding in Singapore's publicly-funded higher education sector
Author: Ng, Carl Jon Way
ISNI:       0000 0004 5352 5919
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2015
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This study conceives of Singapore's publicly-funded higher education institutions (HEIs) - comprising autonomous universities and polytechnics - as (quasi-)corporate organizations, with concerns of strategic self-representation to appeal to stakeholders in an increasingly competitive environment. Such a conception is in line with this inquiry's focus on how these organizations semiotically enact their corporate identities in the form of their corporate brands, The investigation involves, firstly, examining how the brands are enacted in and through a variety of multimodal brand artifacts, particularly through expressions of verbal and visual modality, instantiations of metaphor, and use of images. In addition, the study considers how these brand enactmepts provide an avenue in and through which the organizations can potentially influence and exercise control over addressees to engender favourable dispositions towards their corporate brands as well as shape addressees' individual subjectivities. Finally, the inquiry probes the process of the brands' constitution, examining the variables - social, economic, political, and so on - that influence such a process, seeking to discern how the contextual dynamics surrounding these brands are inflected and negotiated in the brand enactments. As a comparative basis, selected references to the British HE context will be made where appropriate. The textual analysis reveals attempts at moderation of organizational authority through particular patterns of modality, as well as an emphasis on brand animation and anthropomorphization through metaphorical instantiation, to foster cognitive appeal and identification on the part of the audience. The analysis of images also reveals how two different sets of paradigms and their attendant subjectivities are pictured and purveyed: one leans towards a less current Fordist configuration associated with order, structure and conformism, while the other is oriented towards the values of freedom, empowerment and flexibility privileged In a post-Fordist socioeconomic and organizational context. Nonetheless, that an emphasis on the capitalist values of individual and organizational empowerment, dynamism and competitiveness, among others, is evident in many of the brand enactments, both verbally and visually, indicates how discourses of (neoliberal) capitalism have been inflected In the process of corporate brand constitution.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available