The Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management
The Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management searches for standards that unite all PR professionals while identifying the diversity among the many ways in which public relations and communication management are practiced and taught. Its members – the professional bodies as well as the institutions of higher education – come together to jointly raise those standards and to globalize the profession. At the same time, GA is an association of associations: helping each other achieve association development, governance and sustainability through the exchange of good practices and learning opportunities.
The past year has been exciting for the Global Alliance, with a number of projects coming to fruition.
World Conference on Public Relations in Emerging Economies
Around 500 delegates gathered in Nairobi, Kenya in November 2015 for the World Conference on Public Relations in Emerging Economies, a successful three-day event (plus academic master classes) hosted by PRSK where over 250 participants explored how public relations can drive innovation and bring broad benefits to emerging economies.
Global Communications Report
February 2016 saw the launch of the Global Communications Report, driven by the University of Southern California’s Center for Public Relations, and jointly conducted with the Holmes Report and other major global public relations bodies. GA members from 31 countries responded to the survey with results revealing the scale of change disrupting our industry and that driven by content and technology. But a fundamental challenge appears to be recruitment and retention of diverse talent that can sustain growth.
The Global Capabilities Framework Project
This is a multi-year, two-phased project supported by our members at the Annual General Meeting 2014.
The first phase concluded with a compilation of the current most prevalent knowledge and behavioral items as defied in national professional standards and in numerous workshops with association and industry leaders in all continents. In second phase, this GBPK document forms the basis for further consultations with GA member associations and with leading public relations scholars. We will conceptually explore of the knowledge and behavioral items in public relations can be expanded into a global capabilities framework (with local flexibility) that may serve to raise the standards of public relations in the years to come.
COMM Prix Awards
The finalists of the 32016 COMM PRIX Awards were announced in April 2016, together with the winner of the category Academic Case Studies. For the first time—and uniquely for our industry, the judges expressly evaluated how relationships were improved by the entrants’ work. The supreme winner of COMM PRIX will be announced at the CPRS-GA Awards Gala Dinner at the World Public Relations Forum 2016 in Toronto.
The Norwegian Communication Association (NCA) will be the host of the 2018 WPRF in Oslo. The GA received outstanding bids from three continents and in the end, the GA board was convinced that Oslo is the right place for the global profession to convene in 2018. The WPRF 2018 n Oslo will inspire communicators to address all modern communication challenges and opportunities.
Every year the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management organizes an Association Workshop, a free event for member associations where developments and common strategic issues for GA members are explored.
In 2015 the Association Workshop took place 27-27 June in Milan, and 25 associations and institutions from all over the world participated. The first day of the workshop focused on GA work on ‘Global Body of Knowledge’. The second day included GA sessions on the Code of Ethics and WPRF 2014 legacy output.
This year the GA Association Workshop will take place on Saturday 28 May 2016, immediately prior to the World Public Relations Forum. Participants will continue the work on the capabilities framework and will then focus on the main topic for the workshop.
Small and Medium Enterprises – Deliberative Engagement
The Global Alliance has partnered with various European organizations, Universities and enterprises to conduct the project ‘Small Medium Enterprises – Deliberative Engagement (SME-DE). Its aim was to find out how small medium businesses can be communicatively engaged in addressing difficult, ‘wicked’ long-term business sustainability issues. The outcome of the project was presented during the free webinar “How to engage stakeholders on challenging problems?” on 9 March 2016.
Growth and Sustainability
The Global Alliance is growing. Recent new members come from all corners of the world, e.g. the Institute of Public Relations Malaysia, the Middle East Public Relations Association, the Lithuanian professional body LRVS, and the Chilean association FOCCO. Two premier academic institutions have also recently joined: the S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, and the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida.
The Global Alliance will always be as successful as the members give it the mandate to be. The impact they made in 2015/2016 is therefore closely tied to the members’ dedication, support, funding and encouragement. At the same time, GA continue to owe their ‘home’ in Switzerland to the unwavering support of USI, The University of Lugano that provides them with space, infrastructure and counsel. Mr. Gregor Halff, the Chair of the Global Alliance, he is immensely grateful for the support given to them and invited them to remain part of their boundary-spanning work.