Public Relations Society of America definition of PR rejected

A long-awaited definition of PR from the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) has failed to win over UK comms leaders.

‘No thanks’: Francis Ingham
‘No thanks’: Francis Ingham

Following the participation of nearly 1,500 comms people around the world, including the UK’s CIPR, the PRSA unveiled its definition last week.

It stated that PR is ‘a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organisations and their bodies’.

However, the words did not find great favour among a PRCA Leaders’ Panel. In a survey of 108 PR bosses, 61 per cent said they disagreed with the statement.

On this basis, PRCA chief executive Francis Ingham has rejected the description, stating: ‘While we are grateful to the PRSA for its contribution to this debate, we won’t be adopting its definition.’

However, CIPR chief executive Jane Wilson praised the effort. ‘PR is a very broad church and one of the challenges is that one size does not fit all,’ she added.

Meanwhile, the CIPR is developing a definition of lobbying, to feed into the Government’s consultation into public affairs.

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