Source – Berdiansk City Council
How to establish effective informational interaction between municipal authorities and target groups? How to improve awareness of target groups and other participants concerned of the activity carried out by municipal authorities? These and others questions about organization of effective communication were answered in Communication Strategy of Berdiansk City Council and its executive bodies, approved at a regular session of the city council by the deputies on May 23.
The Communication Strategy was developed in the framework of cooperation with the international technical aid project “Partnership for Local Economic Development and Democratic Governance” (PLEDDG), which is being implemented by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and funded by the Government of Canada. In the course of the preliminary consideration of the draft document, the City Council Deputy, Head of Standing Committee on Humanitarian Issues, Deputies’ Ethics and Legitimacy, Yevhen Heorhiev noted that the topicality of such decision was necessitated by modern age, that new methods of informing the population about the activities carried out by municipal authorities should be introduced, and that it was necessary to understand the community and increase involvement of people in joint actions.
The Objective of the Communication Strategy of Berdiansk City Council and its executive bodies (hereinafter – Communication Strategy) is to establish effective informational interaction between municipal authorities and target groups interested in practical use of the projects aimed at increasing economic and social welfare of the city and its residents, and at development of public culture in the city based on mutual respect and public dialogue.
The important tasks also include establishing efficient system of internal and external communication between the city council, its executive bodies, and target groups as well as implementing communication campaigns on target groups’ awareness.
The draft Strategy was developed by PLEDDG Project Consultant Dmytro Konyk and PLEDDG Project Media Expert Andrii Suslenko. The Communication Strategy comprises situational analysis of existing communication system of Berdiansk City Council and its executive bodies (research on media activity around Berdiansk, SWOT-analysis of communication activity, analysis of stakeholders, description of the sources and channels of communication with target audiences), and identification of target audiences and key strategies for communication with them. Moreover, the tips on how to run communication (information) campaigns and monitor achievement indicators for communication campaigns objectives were given.
How topical is adoption of this document? In order to achieve the strategic vision of the city development declared in 2027 Berdiansk Development Strategy, both effective information activity and active communication should be carried out. Communication measures of the municipal authorities should promote implementation of decisions, aims and vision of strategic development of the community. Whereas, the use of the latest methods of planning and implementing communication campaigns, which were proposed, would help ensure effective communication with each type of priority target audience.
In addition, the development and approval of the Communication Strategy is one of the projects included in the Action Plan for 2018-2021 on implementation of 2027 Berdiansk Development Strategy. The Plan was approved with the decision of the forty-ninth session of Berdiansk City Council No.65 on August 30, 2018.
As for the implementation of the Communication Strategy, a task team on introduction thereof and on running information campaigns would be created, based on the Mayor’s directive. The Project’s expert provided both methodic guidelines on planning information campaigns and the implementation plan.