Research shows IPR needs modernising

Too many members of the IPR view the trade body for PR professionals as stuffy and old school, incoming IPR president Philip Dewhurst told the body’s first annual congress in London on Wednesday.

Too many members of the IPR view the trade body for PR

professionals as stuffy and old school, incoming IPR president Philip

Dewhurst told the body’s first annual congress in London on

Wednesday.



Research conducted by the IPR in a four-yearly survey showed that

although 58 per cent of respondents thought the IPR professional and 31

per cent found it relevant, 25 per cent believed it to be ’old school’

and 13 per cent described it as ’stuffy’.



Almost no one thought the words ’innovative’, ’exciting’, ’formidable’

or ’fast moving’ applied to the IPR. ’It’s good to know that most of our

members feel we are professional, but there are too many who view us as

stuffy and old school,’ said Dewhurst.



He used the congress to announce a task force, chaired by Fishburn

Hedges director Philippa Dale-Thomas, which will look at ways to

re-invigorate the IPR and boost the numbers of young and female members.

Only 12.2 per cent of IPR members are under 29, while 7.3 per cent are

over 60. Women account for 47.8 per cent of the membership.



Dewhurst said: ’With more young people choosing PR as a career, we must

do more to attract them into membership. We must also recognise the

growing percentage of women in membership - within a few years, they

will greatly outnumber men, especially in the under 40 category, but

only five of our 50 presidents have been women.’



P IPR director general Colin Farrington told the congress on Wednesday

that the institute is reviewing all its training programmes with a view

to becoming the largest provider of training and related services to the

PR profession. Currently pounds 300,000 of the IPR’s pounds 900,000

turnover comes from training.



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