Chartered Institue of Public Relations (CIPR)


The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the UK’s leading public relations association. With approximately 9,000 members, it is the largest public relations institute in Europe. Founded in February, 1948, the CIPR has always tried to set the “highest standards of professionalism and integrity within the profession” [1]. The CIPR aims “to provide a professional structure for the practice of public relations; to enhance the ability and status of our members as professional practitioners, to represent and serve the professional interest of our members; to provide opportunities for members to meet and exchange views and ideas; [and] to raise standards within the profession through the promotion of best practice” [2]. The CIPR continues to grow, and membership has doubled within the last 10 years. Two thirds of CIPR members are based outside of London, 45% of practitioners work in consultancy while the other 55% work in-house. The CIPR is a member of the European PR federation CERP (Confédération Européenne des Relations Publiques) and also a founding member of the Global Alliance for PR and Communications Management.




Organizational Structure


Every fall, the voting members of the CIPR elect a new President and Honorary Treasurer to serve the following year. The voting members of the CIPR also elect a Council, and acts of the CIPR must have the approval or authority of the Council. There are also four Standing Committees (Membership, Professional Practices, Training and Development, Business Services and Revenue). The Executive Committee, lead by the President and the elected officers, overlooks the day-to-day activity. There are also Regional, National and Sectoral Groups which are run by volunteer members of the CIPR [3].



Membership


Tony Bradley, CIPR President of 2006 stated that “if we expect to be treated like professionals, we need to act like professionals. And that means joining a professional body, being accountable, taking seriously our ‘duty of care’ to our employers and clients and prioritising our training and development to make sure we can offer the best possible communication advice” [4]. A CIPR membership communicates to clients and employers that the member in question has has credible PR training, adheres to the Code of Conduct and is professional in his or her public relations practice. There are six grades of membership: Fellow, Member, Associate, Affiliate, Global Affiliate, Affiliate Studying and Student. As a members, the CIPR will help get you professional recognition, help you hone your skills, help your business grow, support your career development, offer updates on industry issues and news, offer tips on networking and discounts on services. The CIPR also offers respected training courses.



Code of Conduct


The CIPR enforces a structured Code of Conduct to which all members of the CIPR must adhere. It is a living document, and is constantly reviewed and strengthened. The Code of Conduct is based on three principles of practice which are integrity, competence and confidentiality. The document specifies how a practitioner must maintain professional standards and how to interpret the code. The document can be found in full on the Chartered Institute of Public Relations website.


The CIPR Social Media Guidelines


Social Media including but not limited to blogs, wikis and message boards are becoming important and popular tools for personal and organizational communication. The CIPR has developed social media guidelines to ensure the safe and ethical use of such media. Transparency and openness are key elements, and a practitioner must always be careful with the information he or she discloses as well as how one must engage with other visitors. The importance of relating the Code of Conduct to social media is stressed, especially the three main principles which are integrity, competence and confidentiality.


Awards


The CIPR presents two yearly award schemes, the Excellence Awards and the PRide Awards. The Excellence Award recognizes the best of the public relations profession. It is stated that to win an award is to prove to your client, your manager and your company chair that you have succeeded. The PRide award recognizes the best work and talent in communications outside of London.



Publications


The CIPR offers the PR in Practice series, as well as a list of books provided through a partnership with Kogan Page Business Books. These books provide guidance on PR issues such as ethics, management, effective media relations and organizational communications, and to help keep practitioners up-to-date on PR practice and also ensure that practitioners stay on the right track. The CIPR also provides the Profile-Extra Magazine to their members, which is published six times a year and is designed to keep practitioners informed on the latest PR news and developments within the field.



Education and Training


The CIPR offers the Advanced Certificate of Public Relations and the postgraduate Diploma of Public Relations. The Advanced Certificate is aimed to help people begin their career in public relations with the necessary tools and knowledge, or help practitioners move forward in their career. The Diploma is offered to more experienced professionals who would like to concentrate in the field of public relations.




External Link


www.cipr.co.uk



Footnotes


  1. ^ Lewis-Jones, L. The Chartered Institute of Public Relations. (n.d.) Retrieved October, 15, 2008, from: http://www.cipr.co.uk/About/index.htm, ¶ 1
  2. ^ The Chartered Institute of Public Relations. (n.d.) Retrieved October, 15, 2008, from: http://www.cipr.co.uk/About/index.htm, ¶ 2
  3. ^ The Chartered Institute of Public Relations. (n.d.) Retrieved October, 15, 2008, from: http://www.cipr.co.uk/About/index.htm, ¶ 3
  4. ^ Bradley, T. (2006). What’s stopping you from joining? Business Communication, 6(8) , ¶ 4