Message from the IPRA President: IPRA at the Eventiada Awards in Moscow November 2017


 On 15 and 16 November in Moscow, the premiere of the Eventiada IPRA Golden World Awards took place. Although the Eventiada Awards are in their 7th year, this occasion marked the start of a co-operation between the foremost Russian PR awards and IPRA. A new international category was introduced, requiring entries to conform largely to IPRA GWA standards, to be submitted in English and accompanied by a presentation to judges for final assessment.


IPRA sent two board members and myself as IPRA President to do this judging under the guidance of an Eventiada moderator. The three of us, Svetlana Stavreva-Petrushkova and  Anne-Gret Iturriaga Abarzua and myself, found the experience most rewarding. The entries in four categories were of good quality and a witness to the maturity of the Russian and CIS countries markets. Indeed, as judges we decided to add a category to better fit our decisions to award the campaigns which really deserved it.

Both students and professionals

The Eventiada Awards are remarkable also, because among the entries are those of students and professionals. Indeed the awards were initiated by among others Moscow State University. But they would not now take place if it weren’t for the efforts and energy given by another IPRA board member, Elena Fadeeva, and her husband Alexey Safronov. Together they run one of the largest communication groups in Russia.


As a regular judge for the IPRA Golden World Awards, I am aware of the diversity in entries, taking into account that the GWAs are truly global. To my personal satisfaction, a similar aspect characterizes Eventiada. Entries from, for example Hungary and Poland, bring with them specific national and cultural aspects. And the personal presentations to the judges brought us the opportunity to clarify elements in their entries and understand the campaigns in greater depth.


Interestingly, regardless of cultural differences, are the common trends running through most of the communication campaigns we judged. I am referring not only to rigorous structure (objective, strategy, solution, execution) but also to the rise of more intelligent measurement than the old advertising value equivalency (AVE).


The only way is Ethics

The Russian PR industry was also discussed through keynote speeches and round tables. This side event of the Eventiada Awards under the name of the Leadership Dialogue Forum, was of particular interest to the communication students present. While typically there was an culture of transparency and professionalism, mention was made of a certain grey areas where these qualities are lacking. Where these were focused on ethics, the value of cooperation with IPRA became especially relevant since Svetlana, Anne-Gret and I could contribute by highlighting IPRA’s Code of Conduct.


This also brings me to an appeal to IPRA members of our LinkedIn Group to respond to the IPRA’s Secretary-General’s recent call to support our Code of Conduct and thus start a pathway to more fully participate in IPRA. LinkedIn members can reach a special page on the IPRA website to tell us they support the IPRA Code of Conduct: This drive has so far yielded excellent results. I urge the rest of our LinkedIn members to participate today.


Bart de Vries

President 2016 – 2017


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