Her research focuses on the practice of communication management and its professionalization, and on the organization of the communication of the organization. She is a noted consultant and scholar on questions of professionalism of public relations and (strategic) communication management in the corporate and scientific fields Netherlands and Flanders as well as with the Dutch government. Her internationally much acclaimed model of the Communication Grid (Communicatiekruispunt) is known for its quality of efficiently leading a complex strategic question to a clear and practical solution for a successful approach of the issue.
Van Ruler was Chair of the Department of Communication Science (140 faculty) of the University of Amsterdam during 2004-2006. She is Past President of the European Public Relations Education and Research Association (EUPRERA) and Past Chair of the Public Relations Division of the International Communication Association (ICA).
Van Ruler is published in Public Relations Review, Journal of Communication Management, Journal of Public Relations Research, and in many Dutch and international scientific and professional journals. She is winner of the Robert Heath Top Paper Award of The Public Relations Division of the International Communication Association for her research on "Public Relations: Professionals are from Venus, Scholars are from Mars".
One of her European publications is Public Relations and Communication Management in Europe, edited in conjunction with Dejan Verčič, published by Mouton DeGruyter in Berlin. This book contains a nation-by-nation introduction of public relations in 29 European countries and presents an overview of the state of the art of public relations in Europe. Another more recent publication is Van Ruler, Verčič and Verčič (eds.), Public Relations Metrics, Research and Evaluation, published by Routledge in 2008; Ihlen, Van Ruler, Fredriksson (eds.), Public Relations and Social Theory, Key Figures and Concepts, published by Routledge in 2008; and Zerfass, Van Ruler, Sriramesh (eds.), Public Relations Research, European and International Perspectives and Innovations, published by VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften in 2008.
Recent books in Dutch are Communication Management, a communication scientific approach, Career in Communication, Focusing on Communication, reflections on the practice of communication, Communication NOW edition 1 & 2, a trend book on the communication branch, The Reflective Communication Scrum, an agile project method, and Strategic Communication Frame, an agile method for strategy development. Forthcoming is a book on Reflective Communication Management, together with prof.dr. Dejan Verčič from Slovenia, to be published by Routledge (textbook, in English), as well as a book on communication theory for public relations. In 2018 The Communication Strategy Handbook | Agile Method for Creating a Winning Strategy (co-authored with Frank Körver) will be published by Peter Lang International Academic Publishers N.Y.
- In 2013 she was appointed Officer in the order of Orange Nassau by Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands for her ground breaking work on bridging the gap between science and practice in Public Relations and Communication.
- She is Honorary member of Logeion / Dutch Organization of Communication Professionals, as well as Honorary member Euprera / European Public Relations Education and Research Association.
- She is Honorary Fellow of the Amsterdam School of Communication Research / ASCoR at the University of Amsterdam.
- She was appointed ICA Fellow by the International Communication Association during the conference in Prague. Fellow status in the International Communication Association is primarily a recognition of distinguished scholarly contributions to the broad field of communication. The primary consideration for nomination to Fellow status is a documented record of scholarly achievement. Secondary consideration is given to such criteria as service to the International Communication Association and socially or professionally significant service to other publics such as business, government, education, etc.
Member Editorial board of Public Relations Review * Chair Euprera PhD Award * Member Editorial board of Communication Management * Reviewer at the Edward Bernays College of Communication Management * Reviewer ICA, International Communication Association * Reviewer Bledcom * Past Chair Public Relations Division ICA, International Communication Association * Past President Euprera, European Public Relations Education and Research Association * Member of the Board of the European Communication Association, ECA * Member International Project Team of the European Communication Monitor * Past Co-organizer BledCom * Member Advisory board Journal of Marketing and Communication Management, University of Pretoria