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Expecting the unexpected: Nonprofit media responses to anti-abortion terrorism
Unformatted Document Text:  Running head: RESPONSES TO ANTI-ABORTION TERRORISM overlooked in the study of one organization (p. 95). Investigating networks of organizations offers a complexity approach to crisis management. Research Questions The overall aim of this research project is to understand how leading nonprofit organizations engage in crisis communication behaviors before, during, and after anti-abortion terrorism incidents through a complexity lens. Therefore, the following research questions were asked: RQ1: How, if at all, do nonprofit organizations make meaning of anti-abortion terrorism through different forms of media? RQ2: To what extent do nonprofit organizations manage anti-abortion terrorism within a complex environment? Method The research questions were investigated through a content analysis of all publicly available documents, including 62 news releases and statements on six organization websites, 152 tweets, and 63 articles in national and local newspapers. Through an iterative sampling process, six nonprofit women’s organizations were chosen for study: the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), the Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF), NARAL Pro-Choice America (NARAL), the National Abortion Federation (NAF), the National Organization for Women (NOW), and Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. (PPFA). Gilpin and Murphy (2008) suggested that quantitative methods are poor measurements of our complex world, so a qualitative analysis of media was essential to understanding of how organizations manage the complexity of anti-abortion terrorism. A qualitative content analysis provided an appropriate lens to study traditional and new media about anti-abortion terrorism because this method of analysis 13

Authors: Sundstrom, Beth., Briones, Rowena. and Janoske, Melissa.
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background image
Running head: RESPONSES TO ANTI-ABORTION TERRORISM
overlooked in the study of one organization (p. 95). Investigating networks of organizations 
offers a complexity approach to crisis management.
Research Questions
The overall aim of this research project is to understand how leading nonprofit 
organizations engage in crisis communication behaviors before, during, and after anti-abortion 
terrorism incidents through a complexity lens. Therefore, the following research questions were 
asked:
RQ1: How, if at all, do nonprofit organizations make meaning of anti-abortion terrorism 
through different forms of media?
RQ2: To what extent do nonprofit organizations manage anti-abortion terrorism within 
a complex environment?
Method
The research questions were investigated through a content analysis of all publicly 
available documents, including 62 news releases and statements on six organization websites, 
152 tweets, and 63 articles in national and local newspapers.  Through an iterative sampling 
process, six nonprofit women’s organizations were chosen for study: the Center for Reproductive 
Rights (CRR), the Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF), NARAL Pro-Choice America 
(NARAL), the National Abortion Federation (NAF), the National Organization for Women 
(NOW), and Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. (PPFA). Gilpin and Murphy 
(2008) suggested that quantitative methods are poor measurements of our complex world, so a 
qualitative analysis of media was essential to understanding of how organizations manage the 
complexity of anti-abortion terrorism. A qualitative content analysis provided an appropriate lens 
to study traditional and new media about anti-abortion terrorism because this method of analysis 
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