Volltext: Liechtenstein and the German tax affair:

discontinuities"? On the other hand, these events are not rare at all and need not always 
constitute a threat. They may represent opportunities that present themselves suddenly and 
unexpectedly and whose exploitation demands quick action. Chapter 6.1 will investigate 
whether the time between 1 January and 13 February 2008 offered such weak signals in the 
media reports or not. 
Issues management as a proactive opportunity for influence encompasses the measures used 
by an organization to bring its own issues into the public debate and to draw attention to them. 
The author has chosen the communication-scientific approach of agenda setting and issue 
management to answer the following questions as clearly as possible, using the analysis of the 
concrete case, and to derive potential lessons and conclusions for the future: "How do we get 
our issues into the foreign media? How is agenda setting done?" This case is not the first of its 
kind. We recall that the CDU donations scandal from 1999 to 2001, its links to Liechtenstein, 
and the involvement of the German Federal Intelligence Service brought about a similar 
media echo with a similar loss of image and reputation. 
In Liechtenstein, the impression is widespread that the country has become a victim of 
targeted media campaigns, and at the same time the desire is growing to understand the 
relevant structures and processes and to act and react more adequately in the future. On the 
basis of an analysis of the media reports during the critical time period, this paper will 
examine which issues were brought into the media at which times and by whom, and how the 
process of social framing of issues worked. 
2.3 Crisis communication 
"Crisis is a productive state. You just have to remove its smack of disaster.” (Max 
Frisch, cited in: Walther 2003, 140) 
The present paper is not about discussing internal processes in crisis communication or using 
communicative techniques to come to terms with the communication crisis. In light of the 
current status of communication science relating to crisis communication, this would 
primarily be a practice-oriented analysis without a recognized and well-grounded theoretical 
foundation. Important considerations of risk and crisis communication are meanwhile being 
discussed by numerous authors as issues management (see Winter/Steger 1998, Liebl 2000 
and Obermeier 1999), also because public relations theory has so far not developed a 
theoretically grounded framework for risk and crisis communication. The focus is not on 
mutual understanding among conflict parties and consensus, but rather on asserting corporate 
or Government interests. 
Issues management accordingly has crucial significance for risk and crisis communication. 
Two development processes can be distinguished: 
a. The issue as an elementary conflict and starting point for crises (e.g. in the risk 
communication of Shell and Brent Spar), and 
b. The issue as a consequence of a crisis event (e.g. nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl in 
April 1986) (e.g. Schulz 2001, cited in: Rottger 2001, 223).


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