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CIPR launches a Best Practice Guide for Using Statistics in Communications

April 6, 2011



This guide has been established to improve communications professionals' knowledge of what should be included in their work and to identify when they might want to obtain expert statistical advice. It is not meant to be an instruction manual in statistical techniques.

The guide covers:

  • why statistics are used

  • what statistical information should be included in communications work

  • what common statistical terms mean

  • some common pitfalls to watch out for

  • sources of statistical advice.

CIPR CEO Jane Wilson says: "When used well, statistics can establish the credibility and influence of a communications campaign. However, when used poorly, they can result in a loss of trust and potentially damage the reputation of the organisation that used them. These guidelines offer a useful framework for the responsible use of statistics to deliver insightful and relevant communication".

Geoff Gosling, Chair of the MRS Market Research Standards Board, comments: "The accurate reporting of research results is essential for the public understanding of, and trust in, research. I hope that these guidelines will assist in promoting accuracy and clarity in reporting in the future".

Valerie Isham, President of the Royal Statistical Society, says: "By explaining basic statistical terms and highlighting pitfalls to avoid, these guidelines provide a good foundation for making effective use of statistics in communications. We hope that they will help public relations professionals understand the benefits of asking the right questions, interpreting data appropriately and communicating conclusions responsibly".

The full guide is available on our Best practice guides page.



About the CIPR

The CIPR is the professional body for PR practitioners in the UK. With 9,500 members involved in all aspects of PR, profession, it is the largest body of its type in Europe. The CIPR advances the PR profession in the UK by making its members accountable through a code of conduct, developing policies for the PR profession, representing its members and raising standards through education and training.

About the Global Alliance

The Global Alliance For Public Relations and Communication Management, established in 2000, is the confederation of the world's major public relations and communication management associations and institutions representing 160,000 practitioners and educators around the world. The Global Alliance's mission is to unify the public relations profession, raise professional standards all over the world, share knowledge for the benefit of its members and be the global voice for public relations in the public interest.


John Paluszek
Global Alliance Chair

Sara Fedele
Global Alliance Center
c/o USI Università della Svizzera italiana
+41 (0) 58 666 42 81