2016 World Public Relations Forum - May 29-31 - Toronto 

The 9TH EDITION OF THE WORLD PUBLIC RELATIONS FORUM was held on May 29-31, 2016 in Toronto, Canada, on the theme Communication Across Cultures and was hosted by the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS). 

The WPRF 2016 was one of the largest assemblies of public relations and communication professionals from around the world, and a unique opportunity to gather professionals with academics, producing important outcomes for the advancement of the profession.

This year’s Forum featured:

  • The who’s who of public relations and communication professionals from across the globe gathered, for the first time in North America, to discuss the importance of “Communication across Cultures”
  • Countless networking opportunities with influential members from various sectors of the global communication community
  • Workshops, presentations and discussions on emerging trends and research findings from international experts
  • The opportunity to help influence and shape the future of public relations and communication
  • Exhibitors showcasing innovative products and services to help you deliver results for your clients / employees
  • A Gala dinner celebrating both the winners of the CPRS National Awards of Excellence and the Global Alliance COMM PRIX Awards
  • A chance to experience Canada’s diverse multicultural city, with its most popular attractions minutes away from our host venue, The Westin Harbour Castle


With the innovations in technology, the way we communicate has evolved over the past decade, both granting and requiring the ability to reach global audiences with ease. Communicators have realized the importance of a globally minded and culturally diverse strategy of communication that ensures the effective delivery of messaging to all audiences, regardless of cultural background.

On behalf of the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management and the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) we’re thrilled to invite you to the 2016 World Public Relations Forum on May 29th – 31st, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.

This year’s theme, Communication Across Cultures, highlights the global nature of the World Public Relations Forum, and of communication today.  Now more than ever, communication must break down cultural barriers, enhance intercultural understanding, and help communication professionals add value to not only their organizations, but to the global community as well.

The program will feature over 40 learning sessions, including keynotes, workshops, research papers, panel discussions and presentations, all seeking to understand what it takes to be an effective communicator in today’s global society. 

Delegates will take in many professional development sessions, as well as participate in the numerous networking opportunities scheduled. We will be challenging all in attendance to break down cultural barriers throughout the conference, taking every opportunity to connect with people from around the world, whose diverse backgrounds and experiences will enrich our global communication strategies as a whole. 

We look forward to seeing you there.


World Public Relations Forum 2014 - Madrid

Sunday, September 21 - Research Colloquium

On Sunday, September 21 Karen Sanders chaired a successful Research Colloquium, where researchers, academics and scholars debated on the theme "Communication with Conscience".


Monday and Tuesday, September 21-22 - World Public Relations Forum

At the Global Alliance’s Eighth World Public Relations Forum (WPRF) in Madrid, Spain, more than 800 public relations and communication professionals from 65 countries considered the theme of "Communication with Conscience". The Forum was hosted by Dircom, the Spanish Communication Directors’ Association and it was the first bilingual Forum, held in Spanish and in English.


The Forum built on the Global Alliance’s work at the Seventh WPRF in Melbourne, Australia, where delegates adopted a new vision of a communicative organization, centred on the role of communication in defining organizational character and values, building a culture of listening and engagement, and instilling in organisations and individuals a sense of their responsibility to society. In Madrid, delegates contributed their ideas about how public relations and communication professionals could be leaders not just in building communicative organisations, but also in contributing to their own societies.

The following universal principles emerged from the dialogue:

  1. Public relations and communication management must aspire to a social purpose, serve social cohesion, and aim to bring communities together.
  2. Public relations and communication management can enable social integration by listening, identifying agendas, and creating shared narratives and safe places for dialogue around the social challenges of each society.
  3. Public relations and communication professionals must take responsibility for identifying how they can serve their own societies.
  4. By realizing the power of communication, each public relations and communication professional can be a leader. True leadership achieves personal, organizational and societal transformation.
  5. By reflecting on transformational leadership moments, our profession can learn to serve our organizations better, and by doing that, serve society better.


The Global Alliance pledges to continue the dialogue – and build on the Madrid Momentum – by capturing the stories of public relations professionals around the world as they aspire to contribute to their societies through communication. The GA will capture the richness of these leadership experiences, curating them according to cultures, themes, geographies and challenges. This curation will tell the evolving story of leadership in public relations, to guide current and future leaders both inside and outside the profession.


At the Forum closing session Anne Gregory, GA Chair, and Gregor Halff, GA Chair-Elect, acknowledged Dircom, the Spanish Association of Communication Directors, for the organization of this outstanding event and announced that the ninth edition of the World Public Relations Forum will be held in Toronto, Canada, in 2016, hosted by the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS).


They also announced the World Conference on Public Relations in Emerging Economies, which was held in Nairobi, Kenya, on November 15-18, 2015.

World Public Relations Forum 2012 - Melbourne

"Communication without borders", this is the theme of the 7th World Public Relations Forum, which was held on November 18-20, 2012 in Melbourne, Australia. The event was hosted by the Public Relations Institute of Australia (PRIA) at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and saw the participation of almost 800 delegates from 29 countries.

Sunday, November 18 - Research Colloquium

On Sunday, November 18, Dr. Marianne Sison chaired a successful Research Colloquium, where 100 people discussed and debated about the newest ideas and research in public relations.

All the papers for the Colloquium are now available online.

Click here to download the Research Colloquium proceedings.

Monday, November 19 - World PR Forum Day 1

The first day of the World Public Relations Forum hosted speakers from around the world who covered a wide range of topics on the theme "communication without borders", including public relations in sport, the laws surrounding social media and the implementation of the integrated reporting.


During the morning session on "Stakeholder-centred communication in global organisations", Jean Valin and John Paluszek, both GA Past Chairs, presented the Enel/GA Study "Who Has Seen The Future?". This study presents best practices from nine multinational corporations and relevant findings from four recent in-depth international studies.


In the afternoon Daniel Tisch, GA Chair, and Jean Valin, GA Past Chair, conducted the Melbourne Mandate Symposium, where delegates discussed and debated the Melbourne Mandate, a call to action of new areas of value for public relations and communication management.

Tuesday, November 20 - World PR Forum Day 2

The final day of the 2012 WPRF continued the trend of discussing the issues relevant to the industry and sharing ideas among the best PR minds across the world. A clear theme developing from the forum was around ‘story telling’, which was a phrase echoed in many presentations.


In the morning Richard Edelman delivered an impressive keynote speech focusing on the future of public relations and identifying what practitioners must do to keep up with our changing world.


The day came to a close with Daniel Tisch, GA Chair, and Jean Valin, GA Past Chair, presenting the final statement of the Melbourne Mandate, a document that will shape the code of PR practice for the upcoming years.

The Melbourne Mandate document is available for download on the Melbourne Mandate blog.

Daniel Tisch also announced that the next World Public Relations Forum will be held in Madrid, Spain, in 2014, hosted by Dircom, the Spanish association of communication directors. Click here to read the press release.

World Public Relations Forum 2010 - Stockholm

The 6th World Public Relations Forum was held on June 15-16 2010 in Stockholm, Sweden. The event was hosted by the Swedish Public Relations Association in partnership with the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management. 

At the World Public Relations Forum delegates endorsed the Stockholm Accords, a bold call to action on the role of public relations in today’s global networked society and a two year brief for a public relations program to be implemented by the global professional community.


The final text was agreed after months of development, involving around 1,000 professionals in various virtual spaces, and during the ‘face-to-face’ deliberations at the World Public Relations Forum in Stockholm. Participants came from across the world and from all walks of practice – practitioners, academics, internal communicators, corporate specialists, students and many others. The discussion has been, quite genuinely, a global one, and, it continues today in many spaces.
Click here to download the Stokholm Accords. 


During the Forum, delegates interacted with a long list of visionary speakers, with a capstone address by Dr. Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum.


Other guest speakers included Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt; Global Reporting Initiative chair Mervyn King; Bjorn Edlund, former vice president of communications at Royal Dutch Shell; social media expert Brian Solis; and Peje Emilsson, executive chairman of Kreab Gavin Anderson.