PARIS: France's education system is to introduce a doctorate-level course specifically intended to provide directors of communication.
At present some 40 different doctorates in communications and PR exist, but none are aimed specifically at training future comms directors.
ISCPA, France's leading journalism school, will inaugurate a course in October, with 25 places available, which will lead to a 'dircom' doctorate which should provide access to the coveted communications director position.
Candidates will need five years comms experience. ISCPA comms director Magali Blacteau said: 'The decision to create the course comes in the wake of a pressing demand from the profession itself, which sees a need for specialists who will be trained not only in the subject of communications, but also marketing and the new technologies.'
ISCPA has named a committee to oversee formulation of the curriculum.
It includes French PR industry veteran Claude Marti, honorary president of the Federation Francaise de la Publicite.
'The panel will have a permanent presence at ISCPA. It has the right to decide on course content, and has a say on the publicity materials being issued for the programme,' said Blacteau.
Once the classroom phase of the course is completed, candidates for the doctorate will have to prove their competence during a six-month on-the-job probation period.