News: PRII conference to take place online

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THE theme for the Public Relations Institute of Ireland (PRII) national conference is ‘Leading Communications in a Time of Flux’. The conference, dedicated to those working in public relations and communications in Ireland, takes place on 30 November and 1 December. It will have national and international speakers with delegates attending online. The seven-hour program across the two days features eighteen speakers, six subject areas, three case studies and two-panel discussions.

The conference will focus on issues, particular to public relations, which will influence the objectives, strategies and tactics of communications advisors working in-house or in agency, in a time of economic, social, political and environmental upheaval. What some commentators are referring to as a ‘polycrisis.’ The aim is to bring delegates up to speed for the uncertain year ahead with expert presentations and conversations.  

It will be opened by a keynote presentation on Aligning Public Relations and C-Suite Objectives by Dr Anne Gregory (pictured), professor emeritus of corporate communication at the University of Huddersfield, one of the world’s leading public relations academics.  

A session on Crisis and Issues Communications will begin with Ella Minty, an issues, crisis and reputation adviser, speaking on the importance of trust in crisis communications. This will be followed by three case studies: ‘Call Russia’: The Red Flag response to the attack on Ukraine; Flying in the Face of a Crisis by the Dublin Airport Authority; and Cyber Attack: Health Service Executive experience.  

The final session on day one will be about the value that online planning tools can bring to devising strategic public relations programs with Sarah Wait, director, global forward planning services, Onclusive.  

On the second day, there is a panel discussion about Industrial Relations Communications Today with Martin Wall, The Irish Times, washington correspondent (former industrial relations correspondent), Niall Shanahan, Forsa Trade Union communications officer and David Geary, vice president, PRII, assistant general secretary and director of communications, Irish National Teachers’ Organisation (INTO).  

Addressing the need to adopt more sustainable ways of life and the important role communications advisors can play, a session on sustainability will be opened by sustainability communications expert Solitaire Townsend, chief solutionist and co-founder at Futerra in conversation with Padraig McKeon, president, PRII. This will be followed by a panel discussion on current sustainability projects in Ireland with AIB, Musgraves, and Heineken. 

The conference closes with a presentation by Jana Brockhaus, Department of Strategic Communication at Leipzig University, Germany on how to manage digitalization processes and build digital infrastructure.