The latest public affairs and politics news, opinion and features.
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News and news analysis

Six more industry pros throw their hat in the ring for seat in Parliament

Six more industry pros throw their hat in the ring for seat in Parliament

Six more industry professionals are running as parliamentary candidates in the general election, PRWeek has learned.

PRCA welcomes rulings ordering ministers to publish diaries

PRCA welcomes rulings ordering ministers to publish diaries

On Thursday, two courts ruled that Whitehall cannot use exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act to protect ministerial diaries from public scrutiny.

Public affairs tactics will need to change radically after the general election

Public affairs tactics will need to change radically after the general election

Notwithstanding a sudden surge in the fortunes of one of the major parties, the general election is likely to result in either a slim Parliamentary majority of the kind not seen since Sir John Major's ill-fated 1992-1997 administration nearly 20 years ago, or a minority government. This in turn presages a radical change in the tactics employed by public affairs agencies to influence the Government's legislative programme. PRWeek speaks to three public affairs professionals to get their insight on the opportunities and challenges presented by the composition of the next government.

WPP PR and public affairs Q1 growth held back by UK and continental Europe

WPP PR and public affairs Q1 growth held back by UK and continental Europe

WPP has reported a 1.2 per cent rise in like-for-like sales in its PR and public affairs group in the first quarter of 2015, with growth in all regions except the UK and continental Europe. Net sales in the division grew 1.6 per cent.

Weber Shandwick recruits David Skelton to helm UK public affairs

Weber Shandwick recruits David Skelton to helm UK public affairs

Weber Shandwick has hired political consultant and strategist David Skelton to lead its UK public affairs offering.

Bell Pottinger releases social media tool to track general election

Bell Pottinger releases social media tool to track general election

Bell Pottinger has launched a social media dashboard, which aims to offer daily insight into the general election campaign.

TV is top medium for grabbing attention and influencing voters

TV is top medium for grabbing attention and influencing voters

Politicians should rethink outdated campaigning techniques such as billboard advertising, according to a new 'Election Engagement Index' from Weber Shandwick and Research Now.

Conservatives top 'Polifiller' manifesto check with 200 clichés

Conservatives top 'Polifiller' manifesto check with 200 clichés

The Conservative Party's 'Big Society' mantra came out on top after Houston PR ran all available party manifestos through its 'automated political cliché removal tool'.

The language of politicians is turning off voters, according to poll

The language of politicians is turning off voters, according to poll

Research by Golin, in association with the polling organisation Toluna, found that a third of the British electorate trust candidates less when they lapse into buzzwords and "politician-speak".

Labour pledges to end "scandalous" long-term unpaid internships

Labour pledges to end "scandalous" long-term unpaid internships

Labour's plan to end long-term unpaid internships if it wins the election has been welcomed by the PRCA.

UK among seven out of 19 EU nations to regulate lobbying, says anti-corruption watchdog

UK among seven out of 19 EU nations to regulate lobbying, says anti-corruption watchdog

Only seven out of 19 European countries have measures in place to regulate lobbying, according to a comprehensive report by Transparency International (TI).

Camelot holds competitive pitch for public affairs brief

Camelot holds competitive pitch for public affairs brief

Camelot, the operator of The National Lottery, is to hold a competitive pitch for its public affairs representation.

Labour's pledge to abolish Lobbying Act garners industry and charity support

Labour's pledge to abolish Lobbying Act garners industry and charity support

Labour's general election manifesto, published yesterday, reiterated the party's commitment to repeal the Lobbying Act and "replace it with a tougher statutory register of lobbyists".

How Google and Coca-Cola execs are helping to build Brand Hillary

How Google and Coca-Cola execs are helping to build Brand Hillary

Clinton launched her 2016 campaign on Sunday with a video and a tweet.

Number of organisations signed up to lobbying register reaches 46

Number of organisations signed up to lobbying register reaches 46

The number of organisations to join the lobbying register since it launched a fortnight ago has reached 46, with recent additions including Burson-Marsteller, Westbourne and Bellenden.

Support for Ed Miliband rises as #nondom trends on Twitter

Support for Ed Miliband rises as #nondom trends on Twitter

Labour leader Ed Miliband's plan to scrap the non-domicile tax status has received widespread support on social media, generating 20,000 conversations with the hashtag #nondom used 4,000 times.

Kenya picks Grayling to resurrect tourism numbers

Kenya picks Grayling to resurrect tourism numbers

The country acknowledged it has "suffered serious blows to its tourist industry and global reputation over the past 18 months."

Opinion and features

Mental ill-health: It's time for us to grow up and talk about this problem in PR

Mental ill-health: It's time for us to grow up and talk about this problem in PR

When I read the PR Week/PRCA survey on Mental Wellbeing, I did so with a sense of relief.

Why looking down is killing creativity in PR

Why looking down is killing creativity in PR

The historian Simon Schama said in The Guardian recently that we have become the "look down" generation.

Showcase: The Office for Estimation

Showcase: The Office for Estimation

Smart Energy GB, an independent organisation promoting the use of smart meters, teamed up with Third City, ad agency AMV, PHD and the Daily Mirror to launch an April Fool's campaign to highlight their benefits when it comes to utility bills.

No, no, trust me: the purpose of PR is dead

No, no, trust me: the purpose of PR is dead

Gosh, what a load of hand-wringing fuss about Robert Phillips' book Trust Me, PR is Dead.

How and why to campaign on your organisation's reputation

How and why to campaign on your organisation's reputation

Trust is earned when reputation becomes central to every business decision, but it is a job that requires constant refinement and evolution.

Under the influence

A sure fire way to a strong public profile is being recognised as influential. I've been thinking a lot about the nature of influence lately, mostly through my involvement in putting together a list of the 50 most influential people when it comes to higher education policy.

Inside Nigeria's Twitter election

Inside Nigeria's Twitter election

Like many Western elections, campaign conversation in Nigeria has moved to Twitter - but with some very big differences.

Five devices politicians use to build a winning sound bite

Five devices politicians use to build a winning sound bite

With the general election drawing ever closer, politicians are bombarding the public with speeches on TV, radio, in town halls, on buses and - in the case of Nigel Farage - even in pubs. They are all searching for the killer sound bite that will deliver them victory like Bill Clinton's devastating "it's the economy, stupid" used in the 1992 US presidential campaign. Here are five rhetorical devices politicians will attempt to combine for the sound bite that could win them the election.

A mixed bag for booze and fags

A mixed bag for booze and fags

It has been a fortnight of contrasting fortunes for the UK's two biggest 'sin' industries.

Osborne's sixth Budget defines both him and David Cameron's premiership

Osborne's sixth Budget defines both him and David Cameron's premiership

Budgets come and Budgets go - but this one is significantly different. It is a moment of definition for Chancellor George Osborne, its architect. And his sixth Budget also defines the future of David Cameron's premiership.

TTIP may be a good deal but its supporters need to communicate it more effectively

TTIP may be a good deal but its supporters need to communicate it more effectively

TTIP is not your typical free trade agreement. To be more precise, as one of the primary goals of the agreement is to address a range of regulatory issues between the two blocs, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership currently being discussed by the US and the European Union is not an entirely traditional free trade agreement.

PRWeek's Mentoring Project: The benefit of experience

PRWeek's Mentoring Project: The benefit of experience

Claire Murphy catches up with PRWeek's Mentoring Project to see how it has helped both the mentors and mentees' careers.

Jacqui Smith: 'I haven't left politics, I've left Parliament'

Jacqui Smith: 'I haven't left politics, I've left Parliament'

In 1997 Jacqui Smith entered Parliament as one of 'Blair's babes' on the back of an all-women shortlist. By 2007 she had become the first female Home Secretary and for two years was the most powerful woman in British politics. But she lost her Redditch seat in the wake of the MPs' expenses scandal. Now she is back as chair of Westbourne Communications' public affairs practice. She discusses politics, PR and passion with Anna Reynolds.

No cracks yet in the glass ceiling

No cracks yet in the glass ceiling

Although the Equal Pay Act was first introduced in 1970, women's salaries in PR still lag well behind that of their male counterparts, particularly at senior level and for those aged over 40.

Recent public/corporate affairs people moves

Barclays head of media Giles Croot moves to Balfour Beatty

Barclays head of media Giles Croot moves to Balfour Beatty

Former director of media at Barclays Bank, Giles Croot, has moved to Balfour Beatty to head up its comms and investor relations team, PRWeek has learned.

Cohn & Wolfe promotes Andrew Escott to head global corporate practice

Cohn & Wolfe promotes Andrew Escott to head global corporate practice

Cohn & Wolfe (C&W) has announced a reshuffle to its senior corporate team, with UK corporate MD Andrew Escott appointed to head the agency's global corporate practice.

Flybe comms director Andrew McConnell leaves after one year in role

Flybe comms director Andrew McConnell leaves after one year in role

Andrew McConnell has left his role as director of communications and public affairs at regional airline group Flybe, a year after he was hired from easyJet to turn the company around.

William Hague's former adviser Chris White joins Bellenden

William Hague's former adviser Chris White joins Bellenden

Bellenden has hired William Hague's former special adviser Chris White to join the senior management team at its public affairs arm.

Westbourne Communications opens Brussels office and makes two hires

Westbourne Communications opens Brussels office and makes two hires

Westbourne Communications has boosted its European operations by hiring two European Union experts and opening an office in Brussels.

Three restructures corporate comms amid senior departures

Three restructures corporate comms amid senior departures

Mobile phone group Three has made major changes to its PR structure, with the corporate comms team now reporting to director of legal for marketing, consumer and sales following the departure of director of corporate affairs Hugh Davies and head of corporate comms Guy Middleton.