Improve the effectiveness of policy communication in Lao Cai province

The work of communicating guidelines, guidelines and policies is always given special importance by our Party and State with the motto that communication must come first to unify awareness and create social consensus.

Lao Cai increases orders for press agencies to carry out policy communication. (Photo: LCDT)

Lao Cai steps up the implementation of policy propaganda for the people. Summarizing 10 years, all levels and sectors in the province have organized over 25,887 propaganda sessions, conferences, seminars, studies, activities, thematic briefings, and integrated legal propaganda for over 2 million officials, civil servants, public employees, armed forces, members, and union members. Press agencies have had hundreds of thousands of news and policy propaganda articles for people of all ethnic groups in the province in Vietnamese, Mong, Dao, and Giay on radio and television.

The core goal of policy communication is to attract people and relevant organizations to contribute opinions to develop policies. However, in recent times, collecting comments from organizations and citizens has not been really effective. One reason comes from the drafting agency not really coordinating well with the press, and another reason comes from the indifference and lack of interest of the people. Therefore, when promulgated, some policies are difficult to put into practice, or very quickly have to be amended or supplemented.

In order for policy communication to be truly effective, the Prime Minister issued Decision No. 407/QD-TTg dated March 30, 2022 approving the Project "Policy communication organization with great impact on society in the process of developing legal documents in the period 2022 - 2027" and Directive No. 07/CT-TTg on strengthening policy communication.

Lao Cai Provincial Party Committee has issued Directive No. 19-CT/TU on projects on propaganda and dissemination of legal education issued according to the Prime Minister's decision for the period 2022 - 2027, focusing on specific and disadvantaged groups, residents of border areas, ethnic minority areas, and areas with special difficulties. The People's Committee of Lao Cai province issued Plan No. 158/KH-UBND of the province on March 21, 2023. Implementing the Project of Policy communication organization with great impact on society in the process of developing legal documents in the period 2022 - 2027

Challenges of policy communication in the new context

With the development of information technology, the internet and new media, the media space is now more complex and diverse. At times, unofficial sources of information tend to overwhelm official information channels from State agencies.

Policy communication is an important task and function of state administrative agencies at all levels. However, currently, agencies, units, and localities do not have a team of specialized policy communication staff. This task in state administrative agencies are all part-time officials, civil servants, and public employees, lacking both human resources, working conditions, and funding for implementation. From that reality, it requires more attention from all levels and sectors to organize and carry out appropriate policy communication work in the new situation.

One of the goals of the media is to build people's trust in administrative agencies at all levels in formulating, promulgating, and implementing policies. Communicate policies with the motto "People know - People understand - People believe - People follow - People do". Whether or not the organization of policy communication is effective plays a decisive role in the success or failure of the policy.

Key solutions

First, organize well the work of orientation and information guidance for the press on policy communication. Strengthen coordination between the Provincial Party Committee's Propaganda Department, the Department of Information and Communications, the Department of Justice, agencies in charge of drafting policies, and the press and media to promote policy communication early, from afar, right from the draft stage to ensure and promote people's ownership in building and promulgating policies and laws, creating social consensus.

Second, pay attention to the arrangement and training of human resources, and implement the implementation of job positions and staffing norms for civil servants and public employees working in policy communication work. Organize training for reporters, editors, information and press managers in Lao Cai province, the Culture and Information Department, the Center for Culture, Sports and Communications, and the Department of Culture, Sports and Communications, collaborators of press agencies on skills and responsibilities in policy communication.

Third, develop information and communication infrastructure in the direction of promoting digital transformation to promote policy communication innovation. Especially promoting and implementing digital transformation plans for press agencies in the province. Promote the application of information technology and new communication methods and social networks to serve policy communication such as: Improving the operational efficiency of the system of electronic information portals and official social networking sites of agencies, units and localities; online meeting system; innovating and developing smart broadcasting systems; deploying citizen APP;…

State administrative agencies promote communication on digital platforms. (Photo: LCDT)

Fourth, promote ordering press agencies to carry out policy communication. Review and amend the list of public service services using state budget in the field of information and communications and submit to competent authorities for approval and other regulations according to Decree No. 32/2019/ND-CP dated April 10, 2019 of the Government regulating the assignment of tasks, ordering or bidding to provide public products and services using the state budget for audio, video, print and electronic newspapers as a basis for ordering and assigning tasks to media and press agencies to carry out policy communication tasks. Pay attention to allocating annual funding for policy communication work in Lao Cai province according to the guidance of the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Information and Communications. Encourage press agencies to innovate and be creative to improve the effectiveness of policy communication in the province. Pay attention to ordering press agencies to communicate policies in ethnic minority languages and appropriate forms, meeting the people's need to access policy information, especially ethnic minorities and mountainous areas.

Fifth, innovate policy communication methods. Be proactive and innovate communication methods and forms of providing information to the press to ensure information openness and transparency. Do a good job of speaking and providing information to the press in Lao Cai province. Publicly and transparently information and documents subject to public disclosure according to the provisions of Article 17 of the Law on Access to Information. Instruct agencies, units and localities in the province to review and publish information about the Spokesperson (NPN), publicize NPN information on the portal/website of agencies and units. Building a policy communication connection network in Lao Cai province. Diversify forms of communication. In addition to traditional channels such as communication in the press and mass media; news; publications; oral propaganda (conferences, seminars, training,...); hoardings, posters; Agencies, units and localities increase the application of new communication technology, improve interaction between the government and people, and make the most of social media platforms such as Facebook, Youtube, Zalo... . to communicate, exchange, and convey policy information to people in the fastest, most intimate, and effective way./.

Vu Hung Dung

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