Major overhaul is planned as IPR listens to members

The Institute of Public Relations is set to restructure following

criticism from its own members.

In response to a strategy paper released earlier this year, members said

the existing special interest groups were out of date, offered

inconsistent services and relied too much on the work of volunteers.

Proposals under review include recruiting more IPR staff to assist in

running the groups and creating a host of different groups.

Ideas for sectors to be covered by a designated group for the first time

include in-house PR and arts, sport and tourism. Other proposals include

separate groups for those working in small consultancies of no more than

six staff, as well as for IPR members based outside Britain.

Networks could also be introduced dedicated to gay, ethnic minority and

public sector PR professionals.

The IPR is consulting members for further comments by 22 September.

These are expected to be voted on by the IPR's ruling council in

February 2002 and be put in place by 2003.

IPR director-general Colin Farrington said: 'Some of the options

proposed are far reaching and will radically alter current arrangements.

All are designed to make better use of volunteers' time and to exploit

more effectively the technology available.'

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