27th PR Congress tackles issues shaping Philippine communication trends

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    With the economy contracting and many businesses facing losses, shifts in priorities have pushed public relations to the back burner. The upcoming 27th National Public Relations Congress will look into the state of the PR industry in the country as it shakes off the effects of the pandemic and gears up for the new year and decade. The annual conference, spearheaded by the Public Relations Society of the Philippines (PRSP), is going digital for the first time and will run for three days instead of the usual two from February 17 to 19.

    Kicking off the talks on the first day of the Congress is PRSP President Norman Agatep, APR, who will provide a glimpse into how the local PR industry was impacted by the pandemic. He will look into what has changed in the industry since the virus hit, how communication practitioners responded to the effects of the lockdown and related restrictions, and how agencies are getting back on their feet.

    Sessions on the state of PR in Asia and the world will follow, to be presided by Prof. May Lwin and Nitin Mantri, respectively. The first plenary sessions touching on the local, Asian and global PR sectors hope to provide attendees with a much more accurate picture of present-day industry realities so they can better understand how they fit in the evolving panorama.

    PR’s role in the new dynamic will be further examined in the talk by Ron Jabal, APR, CEO of PageOne Group. He will discuss how communication firms and practitioners can evolve their practice to better suit the changing business terrain and how PR narratives can better reflect new priorities.

    Rishad Tobaccowala, speaker and author of the best-selling book “Restoring the Soul of Business: Staying Human in the Age of Data,” will open the discussions on the second day with his talk on the shift to digital and how this will define a new era for PR and engagement.

    Arun Sudhaman, CEO and editor-in-chief of PRovoke Media, formerly Holmes Report, will explore ways on how to personalize brand messaging. Meanwhile, Jane Fordham, a strategic people consultant with two decades of experience in agencies and the creative industries, will discuss how to ensure mental health in the workplace.