News: ECI and PRCA examining workplace ethics globally

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IN September, the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) and US-based Ethics & Compliance Initiative (ECI) announced a joint research project to capture the global state of ethics and compliance in the public relations industry. They recently launched a collaborative roll-out of nation-specific ethics and compliance data, generated through the ECI Global Business Ethics Survey® (GBES®), with accompanying public relations industry commentary and insights from PRCA-affiliated experts.

The PRCA and ECI will release country-specific fact sheets over the course of several months, highlighting five key metrics that are indicative of the state of workplace ethics in organizations around the world: ethical culture strength; pressure to compromise ethical standards; observations of misconduct; reporting misconduct; and retaliation perceived by employees after they report misconduct. The country profiles will address Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Mexico, Russia, Spain, United Kingdom, and United States. 

“Now in its 16th implementation, the GBES is the only longitudinal, cross-sectional study of workplace integrity from the employee perspective,” said ECI CEO, Dr Patricia Harned (pictured), who also serves on the PRCA Ethics Council.

“Findings from the GBES provide indications of the strength of efforts by organizations to reduce wrongdoing and to promote integrity. To that end, we are pleased to partner with PRCA to distribute these profiles, and we hope that they will inspire authentic conversations in workplaces around the world,” Harned said.

With PRCA-affiliated public relations experts lending commentary alongside ECI’s statistical data for each nation, the PRCA and ECI will seek to facilitate awareness, dialogue and a call-to-action in the PR industry and across management disciplines to embrace strong standards and best practices of ethical management – of which PR’s communications and brand reputation-management are critical components.

PRCA director general, Francis Ingham said, “The PRCA is committed to a truly global remit of elevating standards in the PR industry and beyond, inclusive of diverse nations and cultures, and with an understanding that PR ethics dialogues should not transpire solely through a Western construct. We share ECI’s commitment toward a data-centric approach, and the PRCA is most pleased to partner with the ECI team on this particular project, in service to the PR industry worldwide.”

Release of country-based GBES data with PR insights will take place from November 2021 through Q1 2022, as the PRCA and ECI also prepare in 2022 to field GBES among PR and communications professionals. Results of this are anticipated to be revealed by April 2022.

ECI’s future GBES research projects aim to expand the number and geographic diversity of statistically significant data sets, inclusive of nations around the globe.