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

TikTok chooses agencies for six-figure policy and public affairs briefs

TikTok chooses agencies for six-figure policy and public affairs briefs

Social-media platform TikTok has appointed Headland and Stonehaven to provide policy comms and public affairs functions, respectively, PRWeek has learned.

Specialist agency director joins UCAS to lead strategy and public affairs

Specialist agency director joins UCAS to lead strategy and public affairs

Education specialist John Cope has left his deputy director job at consultancy Public First to take up the role of director of strategy, policy and public affairs by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

Weber Shandwick names new corporate affairs lead after Marlowe quits to join insurer

Weber Shandwick names new corporate affairs lead after Marlowe quits to join insurer

Weber Shandwick has promoted Ed Taylor to managing director of its corporate affairs practice after Anthony Marlowe joined insurance firm Rothesay Life as its head of comms and public affairs, PRWeek has learned.

Contracts without competition: a reputational blow for the public affairs industry?

Contracts without competition: a reputational blow for the public affairs industry?

The award of lucrative government contracts to public affairs and political comms agencies with links to Dominic Cummings and senior Conservatives without a competitive tender process since the pandemic arrived in the UK is not an isolated occurrence.

Hanbury defends award of government contracts without competition

Hanbury defends award of government contracts without competition

Hanbury Strategy has defended its being awarded lucrative government contracts through the use of emergency provisions that enable public sector institutions to appoint suppliers without a competitive tender process.

Sard Verbinnen & Co buys UK comms and public affairs agency

Sard Verbinnen & Co buys UK comms and public affairs agency

International comms consultancy Sard Verbinnen & Co (SVC) has acquired UK-based Oakhill Communications for an undisclosed sum.

Philip Morris hires UK corporate comms director

Philip Morris hires UK corporate comms director

Philip Morris Limited UK and Ireland has appointed Janine Mantle as its corporate communications director.

UK government’s return to office campaign delayed

UK government’s return to office campaign delayed

Campaign highlights the benefits of working in an office.

BMA hires Shelter’s comms and policy director

BMA hires Shelter’s comms and policy director

Doctors’ trade union BMA has appointed Greg Beales as its communications and policy director with a remit to increase the influence of the organisation in the post-COVID-19 era.

Cancer Research UK's comms and public affairs chief announces departure for charity CEO role

Cancer Research UK's comms and public affairs chief announces departure for charity CEO role

Sarah Woolnough, executive director of policy and information at CRUK, is leaving the charity after 15 years to become chief executive of the Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation partnership.

Pharma APPG invites bids for secretariat services including comms

Pharma APPG invites bids for secretariat services including comms

Parliament's All-Party Pharmacy Group (APPG) has put out to tender the provision of secretariat services for engagement, comms, policy research and event management.

Pizza Hut Delivery serves up Hanover with new comms and public affairs brief

Pizza Hut Delivery serves up Hanover with new comms and public affairs brief

Pizza Hut Delivery has appointed Hanover to a new account covering corporate and digital comms and public affairs.

PRWeek UK Corporate, City & Public Affairs Awards - 'early bird' deadline approaches

PRWeek UK Corporate, City & Public Affairs Awards - 'early bird' deadline approaches

Time is running out to enter the PRWeek UK Corporate, City & Public Affairs Awards at the 'early bird' rate – the deadline for reduced-price entries is tomorrow (Friday 21 August).

Parliamentary group’s COVID-19 inquiry appoints comms chief

Parliamentary group’s COVID-19 inquiry appoints comms chief

Former Clarion and 3 Monkeys head of news Howard Bowden has been picked to lead comms for a cross-party group of MPs holding a rapid inquiry into the government’s handling of the pandemic.

Government launches major PR, digital and ad campaign for census

Government launches major PR, digital and ad campaign for census

The campaign will aim to illustrate the importance of collecting data and statistics for the census to improve lives.

Hong Kong police put spotlight on UK lobbying firm for pro-democracy work following arrests

Hong Kong police put spotlight on UK lobbying firm for pro-democracy work following arrests

A UK lobbyist’s work on behalf of campaign organisation ‘Fight for Freedom, Stand with Hong Kong’ (SWHK) calling for sanctions has led to a raft of arrests, following the imposition of draconian security laws in the former British colony at the end of June.

Banks of Thames turned red in support of events industry

Banks of Thames turned red in support of events industry

Sector is calling for immediate financial support from government.

Opinion and features

'I’ve started a new chapter and I don’t want to go back' - Chuka Umunna on Edelman, ESG, purpose and politics

'I’ve started a new chapter and I don’t want to go back' - Chuka Umunna on Edelman, ESG, purpose and politics

Former MP-turned-strategic corporate advisor Chuka Umunna talks about his new leadership role at Edelman, the impact of COVID-19, racism, and why he’s done with politics.

Algorithms: Time for the PR industry to emerge from the dark ages

Algorithms: Time for the PR industry to emerge from the dark ages

Following the exam results fiasco, anyone looking for a defence of the humble algorithm has been met by a deafening silence.

Lack of discipline in tactics and messaging risks turning XR into a 'rebellion extinction'

Lack of discipline in tactics and messaging risks turning XR into a 'rebellion extinction'

Extinction Rebellion’s attempts to blockade the delivery of newspapers is another tactical own goal for a movement that is running out of goodwill. The group needs greater discipline and consistency in core messaging to remain relevant.

Six reasons why agencies should consider becoming employee-owned

Six reasons why agencies should consider becoming employee-owned

In the past five years, a growing number of agencies and professional firms have become employee-owned.

Brands and reputations could suffer in the US elections; the comms industry must be on its guard

Brands and reputations could suffer in the US elections; the comms industry must be on its guard

In an uncertain world, where COVID-19 has shone a spotlight on just how interconnected we are, there are reasons for PR pros to take notice of the battle for the White House between incumbent President Donald Trump and challenger – and former VP – Joe Biden.

One degree of separation? The exams debacle is a reminder there’s more than one route into PR

One degree of separation? The exams debacle is a reminder there’s more than one route into PR

Awkward confession: I don’t have a degree.

The PRs defending Hong Kong’s National Security Law bring shame on our industry

The PRs defending Hong Kong’s National Security Law bring shame on our industry

Himself no angel, being happy to promote cigarettes to women as feminist “torches of freedom”, the self-styled “father of public relations”, Edward Bernays, was appalled that Joseph Goebbels was using his book, Crystallizing Public Opinion, to convince the German public that the removal of Jews was necessary for harmonious society. Since then, the ethics of public relations has been taken seriously.

As the line between disciplines blurs, we must redefine the CCO’s mandate

As the line between disciplines blurs, we must redefine the CCO’s mandate

The role of chief communications officer (CCO) has gained noticeable prominence over the past decade.

Top of the Month: Hospitality sector dines out on government help after campaigning

Top of the Month: Hospitality sector dines out on government help after campaigning

When the Government funds cut-price meals at restaurants, it's a sign the hospitality sector's recent campaign and lobby work is worthy of a Michelin star, even in these uniquely trying times for the industry.

The COVID-19 Diaries: Blame and division, but we want a better future

The COVID-19 Diaries: Blame and division, but we want a better future

PRWeek continues its ongoing partnership with strategic insights consultancy BritainThinks to gauge the public mood on COVID-19.

Having a diverse workforce isn’t just about hiring BME people, it’s about keeping them

Having a diverse workforce isn’t just about hiring BME people, it’s about keeping them

Recently, I saw a video of former West Indies cricketer Michael Holding, reflecting on the racism faced by his parents in the UK, in which he breaks down in tears.

Five ways I learned to cope with the return to agency life after time out

Five ways I learned to cope with the return to agency life after time out

For anyone on furlough – or for those who find themselves made redundant – finding a way back to work after time out can be tough.

This is what governing like you’re campaigning looks like

This is what governing like you’re campaigning looks like

What are the three most important things we know about election campaigns? First and foremost, they don’t change anyone’s mind.

The Government’s Brexit preparedness campaign is a 'new start' built on old lies

The Government’s Brexit preparedness campaign is a 'new start' built on old lies

The ‘Let’s get going’ Government information campaign is now all but unavoidable.

Recent public/corporate affairs people moves

Movers & Shakers: Morrisons, YouTube, Tulchan, Deliveroo, BCW, Grayling and more

Movers & Shakers: Morrisons, YouTube, Tulchan, Deliveroo, BCW, Grayling and more

PRWeek's weekly round-up of industry hires, departures and promotions.

Movers & Shakers: The FA, 3 Monkeys Zeno, Engine, Manifest, Boeing, Clarity, FTI and more

Movers & Shakers: The FA, 3 Monkeys Zeno, Engine, Manifest, Boeing, Clarity, FTI and more

PRWeek's weekly roundup of industry hires, departures and promotions.

ExxonMobil hires Medtronic alum Rob Clark as global comms head

ExxonMobil hires Medtronic alum Rob Clark as global comms head

Clark was most recently Medtronic’s CCO.

Boeing names AIG’s Ed Dandridge as CCO

Boeing names AIG’s Ed Dandridge as CCO

Dandridge replaces Niel Golightly, who resigned this summer.

OVO hires Brunswick energy lead as corporate affairs director

OVO hires Brunswick energy lead as corporate affairs director

Independent supplier OVO Energy has hired Brunswick’s Simon Maine as director of corporate affairs and Expedia’s Ben Blake as chief executive of OVO Energy and Smart Home.

Movers & Shakers: PHE England, BAE Systems, LOQBOX, Ballou, PRCA and more

Movers & Shakers: PHE England, BAE Systems, LOQBOX, Ballou, PRCA and more

PRWeek's weekly roundup of industry hires, departures and promotions.