Originally posted on May 25, 2021. The Institute for Public Relations shared this renewed commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

IPR renewed its commitment as a profession-based nonprofit to help improve diversity, equity, and inclusion in the public relations industry. We want to be a driver of positive change and fight against the embedded systems of racism that hurt our society globally. Excellent DE&I practices help organizations succeed, which makes our field stronger and better.

In 2021, we released the following statement guided by a call-to-action:

“We stand with our Black colleagues and the Black community to say that racism, discrimination, and inequality are wrong. No one should ever live in fear of their safety, feel threatened, or have their voices go unheard. We are speaking up and speaking out to stand against racism and injustice. As a profession-based nonprofit, we know that racism and inequality do not stop on the boundaries between our personal and professional lives. We will use our voice to make change. We will listen. We will be vigilant. We will do better.”

To hold ourselves accountable, IPR outlined the actions we have taken over the past year and what we plan to do moving forward.

What We Have Done this Past Year

  • Recruited 6 new members to the IPR Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion advisory committee through 2024
  • Published 100+ research abstracts of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) research on the IPR CDEI Website
  • Held 9 sessions for the Diversity in the PR Classroom series, in partnership with PRSA Educators Academy, featuring 23 diverse PR professionals
  • Committed to ensuring 50% of our IPR conference speakers are diverse
  • Served on the steering committee of the Diversity Action Alliance (DAA)
  • Collected, analyzed, and reported the DAA data for 2020 and 2021
  • Launched two DE&I-focused studies and started qualitative research for an additional report, and embedded DE&I in all our industry-related studies

Our Commitment for 2024

Historically, IPR has played multiple roles in supporting public relations research. Today, we support research in five ways as an aggregator, grantor, partner, interpreter, and convener.

We are committed to advocating for DE&I through these, as well annually:


  • Publish 100+ new research abstracts on the IPR CDEI website
  • Continue to feature research focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion at least once a week in the IPR Research Letter


  • Continue to seek diversity in candidate applications for IPR Student Awards and IPR Lifetime Achievement Awards


  • Partner with diverse faculty and practitioners on new research projects
  • Continue to publish PR pioneer profiles and highlight impactful DEI-focused research for each heritage month in the IPR Research Letter 
  • Continue to host the Diversity in the PR Classroom Series with PRSA Educators Academy
  • Host monthly round table discussions led by members of the Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and then share recap articles on the IPR website
  • Feature leaders to follow in the DE&I space in the monthly IPR LinkedIn Newsletter that reaches 10,000+ subscribers and notify 26,000+ LinkedIn Followers


  • Publish at least 1 new signature studies focused on the state of DE&I in the PR industry through the IPR CDEI.
  • Continue to support the Diversity Action Alliance by collecting data, conducting research, and creating benchmarking reports


  • Increase the number of diverse Trustees on the Board for the Institute for Public Relations 
  • Increase the number of diverse members in IPR ELEVATE (a select membership community of 25 to 40 high-performing innovators and catalysts for growth, change, and advancement who support the mission and insights-focused work of IPR) 
  • Commit to 50% diversity among speakers in all IPR programming
  • Continue to feature DE&I thought leadership at every IPR event, symposium, or conference

Additional Resources: Learn more about defining diversity in “The Language of Diversity,” a report by the IPR CDEI and the Wakeman Agency: https://instituteforpr.org/defining-diversity-equity-inclusion-report/