Many thousands work in public relations and communications roles. Others study and teach this as a subject.
For too long, there has appeared to be a yawning gap between the doers and the scholars, with misunderstandings on both sides.
Yet there’s no one way into the field. Some study first, then go on to develop their careers. Others start out from a variety of different backgrounds and embark on periods of study and professional development alongside work. Those who now teach once worked in PR.
Ours is a professionalising field rather than one with undisputed professional status.
So there is no fixed binary choice between doing and studying. Indeed, anyone who wants to get on and keep ahead in the field needs to be a thinker as well as a doer – a reflective practitioner. To make well-reasoned, ethical choices based on sound information – and have the confidence of their convictions (and the support of their peers).
Yet most communicators work in small teams and struggle to meet the expectations of bosses and clients while managing workloads that show no respect for office hours. The importance and distinctiveness of the role constantly needs restating and defending in a world of encroachment and convergence. The future has not been written yet.
Communicators are broad-shouldered and resilient individuals, but everyone needs support and reassurance from time to time.
Along the way, we aim to provide resources to help practitioners to become more effective, and to assist with the completion of professional and academic assignments.
It’s a diverse field and no one individual or organisation speaks for all of us. Nor can we make this claim. But our intention is to foster a community of practice where scholars and practitioners can benefit from exchanges of knowledge and insight.
The team behind PR Place – PR Academy – were the prime movers in the Mind the PR Gap conference held in July 2017 that brought together academics, practitioners and students and led to an agenda for action.
PR Place is edited by Richard Bailey, who for almost ten years ran PR student magazine Behind the Spin. This site is also for students, but students of all ages who are also practitioners.
All of our content is freely available - though some is for members only. So please join our community to share and learn.
Richard Bailey Ann Pilkington, PR Academy
Editor, PR Place Kevin Ruck, PR Academy
Richard Bailey is editor of PR Place. He teaches and assesses undergraduate, postgraduate and professional students.
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