World Conference Attendees

Unparalleled networking with peers from around the world. Inspiring speakers who will change the way you think about your work, and the world at large. A chance to hone your skills and learn about how to meet the challenges of the future from the best in the business. These are just a few of the reasons communication professionals attend IABC’s annual World Conference.

IABC World Conference attendees work in a variety of industries, in corporations, nonprofits, consulting firms, government and as independent practitioners. They practice in diverse disciplines of communication, including public relations, employee communication, marketing, reputation and brand management, media relations, community relations, public affairs, investor relations, and government relations.

2017 World Conference attendee facts and figures

To give you an idea of what’s in store at this year’s event in Montréal, here’s a look back at some statistics about attendees from the 2017 event in Washington, D.C.

  • The 2017 conference received high ratings from attendees: 86 percent satisfaction with the overall conference, 85 percent satisfaction with the breakout sessions, and 81 percent with the keynote speakers.
  • About 1,000 communication professionals attended.
  • 36 countries represented among attendees, including U.S., Canada, U.K., Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, and the Philippines
  • Nearly 45 percent of attendees were from corporations. The next largest groups were professionals from nonprofits, consultancies and government.
  • More than 50 percent attended a previous World Conference.
  • 82 percent identified themselves as IABC members.
  • Gaining knowledge about trends and practical tools from speakers, and networking with peers were considered the most valuable aspects of the event.
  • The majority of attendees (73 percent) reported having 10 or more years of experience.
  • No. 1 reason cited for attending: The content of the sessions.
  • No. 2 reason for attending: The networking.
  • 13 of Fortune Global 100 companies were represented, including Walmart, Chevron, McKesson Corp., HSBC and AT&T.

Statistics above are drawn in part from a post-conference survey with a 20% response rate. 

Check out how some of last year’s attendees described the experience in their own words:

“I had the chance to broaden my communications horizons and increase my connections as I joined more than 1,000 international communicators…. What an amazing experience! I gained insight from each session I attended and came away from the conference inspired to continue innovating and integrating communications into my niche market.”
—Karen Reid, principal, Kaber Communications, Texas, U.S.


“As a first-time attendee at the IABC World Conference, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I’ve been to numerous workshops and conferences during my career, some good, others not so much. By the end of my four days in Washington, D.C., I told anyone who would listen that the 2017 World Conference was the best professional development event of my life.”
— Connie Feick, marketing manager, EyeMed Vision Care, Ohio, U.S.