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IABC Blog

How elections impact comms strategies

5 Mar 2019

The upcoming Federal Election could bring new challenges to organisations which have deployed public affairs/communications strategies to influence policy outcomes. Similar challenges will apply to public servants charged with implementing new policies that will require communication services to ensure effective implementation.

Whoever wins the election, the policy platforms of both major parties will require broad based consultation across every business sector in the economy, as well as with NGOs, federal and state bureaucracies, regulators, consumers, activists, farmers and land holders, et al.

For example, explaining new regulations with respect to climate change and energy policy will require a substantial body of work to consult affected stakeholders, prosecuting the relative merits of the policy changes that will affect them.

This is a crowded argument in which lobbyists for key stakeholder sectors and interests have been speaking loudly for many years. Gaining maximum share of voice will be tough, as will neutralising the arguments of fossil fuel advocates.

Whichever communication strategy is adopted will be fiercely challenged. A winning strategy will need a number of critical elements:

  • It will need a narrative that describes a grand unifying vision for energy policy in Australia.
  • It will need to be very robust – i.e. it will need compelling counter-arguments to lines of attack by opponents.
  • It will need a ‘concert of supportive voices’ to prosecute it and broad-based stakeholder consultation will be required in order to achieve this.

In my upcoming presentation with IABC Canberra on 13 March, I will examine a number of policy battlegrounds that will require the skills of communications professionals to help build community support and influence key stakeholders. 

Jamie Morse

Jamie Morse, General Manager and Partner at SenateSHJ 

Get your ticket on Eventbrite now to hear Jamie speak at our lunchtime event at the National Portrait Gallery on Wednesday 13 March 2019.

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