MONDAY 5 FEB 2024 2:33 PM


New research from the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) finds 9 in 10 PR directors are white, suggesting the industry still has some way to go when it comes to inclusion.

Those at the top of the public relations sector are predominantly white (90%) and male (54%), even despite most practitioners being female (60%). This is according to new data from the Chartered Institute for Public Relations (CIPR).

The ‘PR Population Report’, published in partnership with Chalkstream, involved 63,563 PR practitioners across England and Wales. It finds that 87% of practitioners are white, with 5% from Asian backgrounds, 4% of mixed ethnicity and 3% black. Of those PR professionals, 84% were born in the UK and, among those born elsewhere, 38% were born in EU countries, 18% the Middle East or Asia and 14% in Africa. "The report’s findings capture an interesting snapshot of the PR industry’s demographic background,” says CIPR president Rachael Clamp. 

“And while the industry’s strides, since the Census data was collected in 2021, must be celebrated, the report’s statistics confirm that the sector must continue to provide equal opportunities for all. It is only then that true inclusion and diversity within the PR industry and beyond can be achieved.”

According to the report, 94% of practitioners believe they are in good or very good health, possibly because PR remains a typically young industry, with 45% of practitioners below 34 years of age. “The data provides the most accurate picture of the profession but does come with some caveats, as outlined in the report,” Clamp continues.

“It does, however, appear as if the growth of the industry was stunted during the pandemic or has not grown as expected in recent years; opinions on this will differ. This is why we must continue working to maintain our relevance and value to the organisations we represent and having these insights now will help us do that as we are developing our 2025-2029 strategy."

The Census is conducted by the Office for National Statistics every 10 years in England and Wales. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic which began in 2020, the results in Scotland and Northern Ireland were not included in the 2021 survey.