chapter  21
Coping with culture
Pages 15

P ublic relations is growing and maturing, and that growth means that practitionersare increasingly involved in international accounts. Alison Clarke (2000)suggested that the global market for public relations had grown considerably and much was related to international business. She projected annual fee income to be £15 billion. Membership of the International Consultants Organisation had grown to include 500 consultancies in 23 countries, representing 24,000 staff. She felt that the growth of international PR was due to the development of organisations’ international relationships and the growth of mega brands, including internet stocks. Moss and de Santo (2002: 3) revealed that the US Department of Labor were predicting that PR jobs would grow 60 per cent by 2004, although this was depleted by the economic downturn. Of the top 25 PR firms in the USA, the top 10 were international, earning $1.7 billion p.a. They also counted 150 national and regional PR associations with a total of 137,000 members. In China alone there were 100,000 practitioners, with another 450,000 students of the discipline. ‘One of the key challenges for practitioners and students of PR . . . will be to become more conversant with how PR is understood and practised around the world’ in order to develop communication programmes that span national boundaries (p. 6). Falconi (2003) estimated that there were three million individuals in the global PR community, 400,000 of which were in Europe.