Message from the IPRA President:   From Yerevan through Tehran to Moscow: November 2019


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November was a busy month for us in IPRA. Following up the GWA Gala in Yerevan, we signed a co-operation agreement with the Armenian Public Relations Association. Then I had the pleasure to deliver the keynote address of the 15th International Public Relations Symposium in Tehran, a forum endorsed by IPRA. There PR professionals had the chance to discuss how PR practice is adapting to challenging times. Later in Isfahan, one of Iran's most beautiful cities, I learned how one of the world’s major names in steel making is improving perceptions about its brand in part by its successful crisis management.

 

And so to Moscow

After Tehran, along with IPRA Board colleagues Anne-Gret Iturriaga Abarzua and Bart de Vries, I travelled to Moscow for the 9th Eventiada IPRA Golden World Awards Competition. We were faced with a real challenge, to pick the Grand Prix winner for 2019.  Also in Moscow (as you can see in the photo), I met a group of PR students from the state university M.V. Lomonosov. Our conversation lasted long over the allocated time and their questions, comments and observations made me think that the future of PR in Russia is in good hands. Finally I'd like to mention the Creative Communications Festival in Dubai, also endorsed by IPRA. The festival looked at how modern public relations is building connections by using content creators to unleash creative thinking.

And what of our future?

In my travels, often three key questions emerged:

  • Is PR a friend or foe in these challenging times?
  • How do we stay ethical in the fight against digital fake news?
  • What are the PR skills that will help us work with artificial intelligence?

In thinking about the answers, I felt there were certain shared values about PR’s destination. I was also delighted to see endorsements of IPRA's new definition of public relations, which was seen as fitting with this future with its IPRA flavour of trusted and ethical communication methods.  So I invite you, the PR practitioners of the world, to think also of what lies over the horizon by letting me know your response to this question: How can we do a better job in educating our publics about the truths and values of our profession?

 

Svetlana Stavreva

President 2019

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