IPRA launches Climate Change Communications Guidelines


To assist the fight against climate change, IPRA has today launched a set of Climate Change Communication Guidelines. The guidelines were launched  in Cologne, Germany at a globally- streamed webinar. The event was hosted by Anne-Gret Iturriaga Abarzua, IPRA president 2023 and head of communications for INEOS in Cologne.


These guidelines take 7 of the 18 articles of the IPRA ethical code of conduct and interpret implementation with respect to climate change communication. For example, under code article eight to not disseminate misleading information the guidelines urge PR practitioners to prevent greenwashing in communication.  Equally, under code article two of the IPRA code to act with honesty and integrity, the guidelines ask that that PR practitioners translate the science of climate change into communication that can be understood in the public arena. The set of 18 guidelines can be found here. The webinar recording can be found here.


Commenting on the guidelines, Anne-Gret Iturriaga Abarzua said: “Companies around the world are facing unprecedented challenges in successfully navigating the path to greenhouse gas neutrality. These challenges are not just technical. It also requires public acceptance to secure the license to operate in the future. Ethical and transparent communication is essential for this. For the first time ever, the IPRA Guidelines offer a suitable and practicable guide.


The webinar was moderated by IPRA’s secretary general Philip Sheppard in discussion with the IPRA president, and board members Daniel Silberhorn and Svetlana Stavreva. Also attending was Dr Henk van Liempt from Scientists for the Future and head of division of EU education programmes at BMBF in Bonn.


The 2023 Guidelines complement IPRA’s history of codes of conduct. Throughout its existence IPRA has sought to provide intellectual leadership for the public relations profession. A key part of this is the development of codes and charters seeking to provide an ethical framework for the activities of the profession. Upon joining IPRA, members undertake to uphold these codes and in doing so benefit from the ethical climate that they create. The current code, reviewed in 2020, consolidates the 1961 Code of Venice, the 1965 Code of Athens and the 2007 Code of Brussels.

Background to IPRA
IPRA, the International Public Relations Association, was established in 1955, and is the leading global network for PR professionals in their personal capacity. IPRA aims to advance trusted communication and the ethical practice of public relations. We do this through networking, our code of conduct and intellectual leadership of the profession. IPRA is the organiser of public relations' annual global competition, the Golden World Awards for Excellence (GWA). IPRA's services enable PR professionals to collaborate and be recognised. Members create content via our Thought Leadership essays, social media and our consultative status with the United Nations. GWA winners demonstrate PR excellence. IPRA welcomes all those who share our aims and who wish to be part of the IPRA worldwide fellowship. For more see www.ipra.org


Background to the Golden World Awards for Excellence
The annual IPRA Golden World Awards (GWA) initiative, established in 1990, recognizes excellence in public relations practice worldwide in a variety of categories. Recipients of the award take particular pride in the recognition granted to their entry as meeting international standards of excellence in public relations. An overall IPRA Grand Prix for Excellence is presented each year to the entry judged as representing the highest standards that year. While there are many national and regional PR awards, there is only one truly global scheme: the GWA.



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