Public Relations

by Debbie Leven

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Handling the Media



My trade – a short history of British journalism

Andrew Marr, published by Pan Books, 2005, 385 pages

This book gives a useful insight into the world of journalism and covers – what makes a news story, how newspaper editors work, understanding political journalism and how to be a columnist.  It provides useful background not just on current practices but on how journalism has developed and changed over time.


The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR)

The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the largest public relations institute in Europe representing some 9,000 individual PR practitioners. The CIPR provides support, training and resources to members. Its diploma is widely recognised by employers as useful grounding for those working in the industry. The CIPR has produced a series of PR textbooks, entitled PR in Practice. They are guides to particular aspects of PR and are the core recommended texts for the CIPR Diploma and Advanced Certificate. Other books are available on key topics. The CIPR also provides opportunity for networking as well as continuing professional development. There is a search facility on the website for anyone looking for PR support.

The Public Relations Consultants’ Association (PRCA)

The Public Relations Consultants’ Association represents some 125 PR consultancies in the UK which generate more than £400 million each year from client fees. It provides members with management and legal tools and information, training and networking opportunities. Members are audited to ensure they adhere to the PRCA’s Consultancy Management Standard which sets standards in terms quality, processes, reporting and client handling. The PRCA provides a search and selection service matching the PR needs of an organisation with PR consultancies.

The Communication, Advertising and Marketing Foundation (CAM)

The Communication, Advertising and Marketing Foundation is a registered charity which offers a diploma in marketing communications. The CAM Foundation has an alliance with The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) and the CAM diploma is managed and awarded via the Institute. Students studying for a CAM qualification must retain CIM membership for the duration of their studies.

Market Research Society

The Market Research Society has members in more than 70 countries. It represents and communicates good practice in research to the business community, government and the public. There are various membership grades and membership brings a number of benefits including training, seminars and conferences.


Ofcom is the independent regulator and competition authority for UK communications industries, with responsibilities across television, radio, telecommunications and wireless communications services. It inherited the duties of the following five regulatory bodies: the Broadcasting Standards Commission (BSC), the Independent Television Commission (ITC), Oftel, the Radio Authority and the Radiocommunications Agency. Ofcom provides information for consumers on communication, and research related to communications. as well as advice on making complaints.

Advertising Standards Authority (ASA)

The Advertising Standards Authority an independent body. It was set up by the advertising industry to monitor and regulate the industry, in line with the advertising codes. The ASA Council is responsible for deciding whether advertising meets the standards of the advertising codes set down. The Advertising Standards Authority regulates the content of advertisements, sales promotions and direct marketing in the UK. The ASA investigates complaints as well as monitoring advertising itself. Complaints can be made via the website.


You can also contact the author directly: Debbie Leven