The latest public sector PR news, opinion and features.

CIPR calls for crackdown on rogue APPGs

CIPR calls for crackdown on rogue APPGs

The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is supporting calls by Lord McFall, speaker of the House of Lords, and his House of Commons counterpart, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, for reform of the regulations governing All Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs).

News & analysis

 Two gloved hands holding a needle (Pic credit: Getty Images)

Cabinet Office praises GCS pandemic performance, despite critics

The Cabinet Office has praised the performance of the Government Communication Service during the pandemic, despite concerns raised around the government's COVID-19 comms.

Cabinet Office sign

GCS generates record income for Cabinet Office

The Government Communication Service brought in a record £18,225,000 for the Cabinet Office in 2021-22, up from £17,634,000 the previous year.

Dylan Sharpe

Kemi Badenoch poaches HS2 media chief as first comms spad

International trade secretary Kemi Badenoch has appointed Dylan Sharpe, ex-head of media at HS2 and a former head of broadcast at Downing Street, as her special adviser on communications.

Sir Tom Winsor, appearing before the London Assembly's police and crime committee last week

London mayoral comms attacked by Sir Tom Winsor

The Mayor of London’s comms operation is under scrutiny after Sir Tom Winsor, the former Chief Inspector of Constabulary, condemned a media briefing made against him as ‘amateurish, shoddy and childish’.

Sir Jeremy Fleming, Richard Moore and Ken McCallum

Spy chiefs going public in the media risk ‘trivialising’ their work, MPs warn

A ‘step-change’ by MI5, MI6, and GCHQ in their approach to media should not become a distraction from their work, Parliament’s Intelligence and security committee has warned.

Grant Shapps

Government announces £18m energy campaign

Business and energy secretary Grant Shapps has announced an £18m public information campaign to help people reduce their energy use.

Protesters outside Parliament holding placards saying "Tory Lies Cost Lives"

Exclusive: Ethics lessons ahead for government comms in bid to win trust

Amid low levels of trust in government and a Downing Street comms operation damaged by Partygate, the Government Communication Service (GCS) is to roll out training in propriety to comms staff across government.

Simon Baugh, chief executive of the GCS, and former prime minister Liz Truss

GCS hits back against comms ‘blame game’

Simon Baugh, chief executive of the Government Communication Service, has denied that comms was culpable for the disastrous reception given to the doomed mini-budget during the ill-fated premiership of Liz Truss.

 Simon Baugh

Exclusive: Cabinet Office comms team slashed by 55 per cent

The Cabinet Office’s core comms team has been more than halved, as part of ongoing efficiencies by Simon Baugh, chief executive of the Government Communication Service (GCS), PRWeek has learned.

Amber de Botton

‘Can poachers make good gamekeepers?’ Meet Downing Street’s new comms chief

Just days into her new role as the prime minister’s director of comms, Amber de Botton is already the subject of a debate among senior comms figures. Some think she’s perfectly placed for the position, while others are critical of yet another journalist being parachuted into the top job in government comms.

Opinion & features

Hot off the press: PRWeek’s 22 most-read articles of 2022

The Information

From the diary of a Cannes virgin and the newest agencies to watch to the Top 150 consultancies and the biggest people moves of the year.

Guto Harri

Guto Harri: journalistic pedigree is paramount for Downing Street comms chief

Strategic comms advisor Guto Harri, who was director of communications at No. 10 from February until September this year, discusses the skills required for the top comms role in government – and why newcomer Amber de Botton’s CV ‘affords credibility and demands respect’.

Daniel Reynolds, director of communications, NHS Confederation

Why comms is a vital part of the NHS

Far from being a drain on resources, as the likes of the TaxPayers’ Alliance claim, comms plays a vitally important role in many areas of the NHS.

NHS performance stats: comms pros face tricky balancing act

The second Thursday of each month is always a significant day in the NHS comms calendar.

(The 10 Group)

What I learned as Mikhail Gorbachev’s press officer

Thinking back to that time, it strikes me just how important it is, as a young PR, to be confident to push yourself forward for the jobs you think you’re too junior for.

Boris Johnson meets Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Kyiv on 9 April 2022 (Photo: Ukrainian Presidency/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

From the UK editor: The comms paradox of the Boris Johnson era

The Knowledge

This article is part of The Knowledge, PRWeek's premium content offer.

Boris Johnson, cheese, and can comms be used to manipulate Google results?

In mid-May, Boris Johnson gave a much-publicised interview where he called for people to return to the office. The reason? Johnson said that when he tried to work from home he became easily distracted by the allure of coffee and cheese.

Five Campaigns We Liked in April: your winner revealed

Find out the winner from PRWeek’s selection of the best PR and comms campaigns in April.

Five Campaigns We Liked in April: vote for your favourite

From Dove's campaign highlighting the dangers of influencers giving beauty advice and Innocent turning Trafalgar Square green to a comedic film from Shelter, PRWeek rounds up its five favourite campaigns from April 2022. Vote below for your favourite – the poll closes 9 May at 5pm.

PRWeek UK Power Book 2022: Top 10 in public sector comms

The Information

PRWeek’s UK Power Book reveals the PR pros who lead the way in their respective sectors. Here we rank the biggest players in public sector comms.

(Picture credit: Leon Neal at Getty Images)

‘End of the Boris era’ – what next for Downing Street comms as Doyle resigns?

Downing Street communications director Jack Doyle was among four senior aides to resign yesterday as the Johnson administration moved from crisis to abject disarray.

The Hepworth Wakefield

‘Changing the language around the city was vital’ – Behind the Campaign, ‘Experience Wakefield’

Rebecca Farnsworth, consultant at Aberfield Communications, gives the lowdown on the agency’s tourism campaign for Wakefield in West Yorkshire.

Kate Clark

Where have all the role models gone? Ageism is rife in the PR industry

Most of us in comms learn on the job and the value of a good role model as you develop is crucial.

Roz Ashton

Diary of a volunteer RNLI Press Officer: Intense media training at HQ is no mini-break

This is the final entry in our series following the journey of volunteer RNLI press officer Roz Ashton, in her own words, as she completes her training and sets out in the role. Ashton has lived around the world, worked in advertising and sailed across the Atlantic.

Campaign images from Stoptober, Every Mind Matters, Look Into My Eyes, and Think Before You Link

Six public sector campaigns we liked in 2021

In a year in which fighting COVID-19 was the number-one priority, it’s easy to forget that many other issues – from knife crime to espionage – were also highlighted.