Dr. Cindy Banyai, a nationally recognized expert in community development and civic engagement with a passion for communications that preserve dignity and humanity, is the featured speaker at the November 3, 2015 membership luncheon of the Southwest Florida Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association.
Dr. Banyai will relate to her projects in Japan and the Philippines and her work in Southwest Florida as she describes strategies for identifying and avoiding “poverty porn.” This genre of communications can result in gratuitous characterizations of misfortune that oversimplify complex social problems and dehumanize the people involved, sometimes impeding long-term solutions to their circumstances.
She will illustrate how to identify poverty porn and demonstrate the power of words in storytelling with dignity, using images that promote humanity, and crafting messages without “deficit thinking.”
Dr. Banyai is the Principal Consultant at Banyai Evaluation & Consulting, LLC. She studied International Relations and Psychology at Michigan State University, and received her Master’s and Ph.D. from Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University in Japan where her research focused on community development, public administration, evaluation, and governance. She is also serves as adjunct faculty at FGCU’s Department of Public Affairs. She was recently awarded the 2015 Donald Littrell New Professional award by the Community Development Society, in conjunction for her work with the Southwest Florida Community Foundation.
Founded in 1938, the Florida Public Relations Association is the oldest public relations association in the United States. The Southwest Florida chapter is dedicated to programs and activities that enhance the success of public relations professionals in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, and Glades Counties, including professional development and certification.