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Revision of Central Government Communications Guidelines now complete

Government Communications Department
Publication date 22.8.2023 11.01
Press release

The 2023 revision of the Central Government Communications Guidelines is now complete. Rapid changes in the communications landscape and experiences gained during the crises of the past few years highlighted the need to update the previous guidelines, which were completed in 2016.

The transformation of the information environment has gained momentum from the crises of the past few years, including the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The prolonged turmoil has put strain on people’s psychological resilience to crisis and affected how central government messaging is received and how communications are perceived.

Along with changes in the operating environment, the updated communications guidelines discuss social media and multi-channel communications, which have taken on stronger roles in society since 2016. At the same time, communications must take into account the negative side effects of social media and be prepared for unpredictable developments.

In recent years, official communications have become more focused on direct communications with citizens, customers and users of services. With this in mind, the new guidelines discuss customer communications in greater detail compared to the previous version.

The guidelines concerning leadership and communications within the workplace have also been updated. 

More extensive revision work to begin once new Act on the Openness of Government Activities in force

In updating the guidelines, the working group took into account the fact that the reform of the Act on the Openness of Government Activities is still in progress. The goal is to revise the guidelines more extensively once the new Act on the Openness of Government Activities has entered into force and central government organisations have gained sufficient practical experience of its application. 

The Central Government Communications Guidelines outline the values that guide communications and describe the central government’s communications procedures. The guidelines provide a foundation for central government organisations’ own communications strategies and other instructions that put the principles of the guidelines into practice.

As their name suggests, the guidelines are intended for use by all central government employees in their work. Training on the recommendation will be organised for communications professionals in central government during the autumn.

The working group’s proposal for the new communications guidelines was published for comments on the Ministry of Justice’s public consultation service from 7 to 28 June.

Inquiries: Jyri Rantala, Deputy Director of Government Communications, Chair of the working group, tel. +358 50 563 3029 and Aapo Riihimäki, Senior Communications Specialist, tel. +358 50 471 3020, Prime Minister’s Office.