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Looking back and moving forward: ProCom Day marks Finland’s 65 years of development in the public relations profession

June 20, 2012


A mix of history and futurecasting marked 65 years of ProCom – the Finnish Association of Communication Professionals - at their main event of the year, ProCom Day, held in Helsinki in June.


Publication of “The Century of Public Relations - The History of Corporate Communication in Finland” which follows the development of communications and professional communicators took place ProCom Day with renowned Finnish and international speakers presenting on the world of changes. Collectively, they examined what the global economy, environmental crisis, change of values, new communication tools and networking means for PR professionals.


First speaker, Global Alliance Chair Mr. Daniel Tisch, shared his experiences under the title “Communication without Control: How Reputations Can Thrive in Changing Times”.


Mr. Alan Stoga, President & CEO at the New York based Zemi Communications, spoke on “Context is Everything: Insights on Global Politics, Economics and Public Relations”. Mr. Stoga, who has a vast experience providing communication counselling as well as political and economic risk assessment to global corporate and governmental clients, shared his views on the future US presidential election, as well as the economic situation in China/US/Europe.


Ms. Nina Volles Bird, Managing Director of Executive Education in Communication Management at the USI Università della Svizzera italiana, Lugano, Switzerland shared her experience in the field of global PR education which resonated with those in the audience working in the academic field.


Top Finnish PR professionals presenting included Professor Leif Åberg from Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Helsinki who gave an excellent presentation on the book “Century of Public Relations – The History of Corporate Communications in Finland” – in which he also is one of the editors. Ms. Arja Suominen, Communication Director of Finnair, shared her experiences on how to manage communications in the sometimes turbulent airline industry.


The panel discussion of the day covered societal themes of today’s world, including youth unemployment, values, immigration, politics and internationalization of businesses. The panelists, the Finnish Minister of Housing and Communications Ms. Krista Kiuru among others, engaged in an interesting one-hour discussion on the themes.


ProCom Day concluded with the Communication Awards Ceremony  with the activity of the Finnish police in social media was awarded as the Communications Act of the Year. Mr. Reijo Karhinen, head of one of Finland’s biggest banking/insurance companies OP-Pohjola-Group, was awarded the Chief Executive of the Year Award for his excellent communication skills and ethical reputation as a leader. The Communication Officer of the Year Award went to presidential candidate Pekka Haavisto’s Campaign Manager Riikka Kämppi for her outstanding ability to activate citizens to participate the campaign in social media.


Professor Leif Åberg, who is a widely recognized forerunner in the field of PR in Finland and also gave a speech earlier in the day, was the award-winner for his lifetime achievement in communications.


Managing Director of ProCom, Ms. Elina Melgin, is a Global Alliance board member.