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Workshop conclusions Wolfgang Petzold Barbara Piotrowska Charles White

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1 Workshop conclusions Wolfgang Petzold Barbara Piotrowska Charles White Information and Communication Unit, DG REGIO

2 Workshop 1.A. Planning efficient communication
Chair: Jimmy Jamar, Head of Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, Communication and CAD Unit Creating a communication plan from evaluation results - Kamila Davidova, Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, Ondrej Stefek, Naviga 4, Czech Republic Hungarian Communication Plan- Judit Szucs, National Development Agency, Hungary French communication strategy - Vasilije Kujacic, DIACT, France Experience of Commission Representation in Barcelona – Laura Rahola Ortega, European Commission Representation in Spain, Barcelona Office Rapporteur: Annabelle Maupas, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Information and Communication Unit

3 1A Debate Questions on how training of communication officers will be carried out; Cooperation with Commission representations and relays useful; Should the message be common or is there the need that the public distinguishes between different funds? Journalist training: be specific on stories, not so much on technical details; Communication one way? How about involving the public in a more interactive way?

4 1 A Conclusions We start from a communication challenge: people do not know No standardised communication, different situations require different approaches, but guidelines/communication tools for communication officers and beneficiaries would be helpful Evaluation matters and helps to make better choices (SWOT); Bringing actors together and pooling resources is important, i.e. use Commission Representations and information relays (Europe Direct); Giving content to the campaigns (brands, common logos; stories) Good feed-back measures are crucial.

5 Workshop 1.B. Helping beneficiaries communicate
Chair: Eddy Hartog, Head of Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Thematic Development and Impact Unit European Funds Fairs – Ewelina Budzinska-Gora, Silesia Marshal's Office, Poland Make it sexy! Communication best practice - Jean-Christophe Binetti, Convis Consult & Marketing GMBH, Germany Media Training for Voluntary and Community Sector Beneficiaries - Richard Holmes, Objective 1 Programme Directorate, Government Office for Yorkshire and The Humber, UK Co-Operation of Managing Authority of CSF and Final beneficiaries for the fulfilment of communication strategy – Evi Panagiotakopoulou, Ministry of National Economy and Finance, Greece Rapporteur: Sebastian Stetter, European Commission, Directorate General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, ESF Coordination Unit

6 1B Debate How to transmit information on the funds to beneficiaries?
How to encourage them to communicate effectively on the projects? How to support and guide beneficiaries? Tips: Declare communication activities as eligible expense Connect beneficiaries with media Efficient media trainings for beneficiaries can pay off in the no-cost presence of beneficiaries and projects in the media

7 1B Conclusions Understand your beneficiaries and involve them in the communication process Beneficiaries are necessary for you to relay information to the public, especially the one on the EU contribution to the regional development, but… communicate that, you need to convince them Provide useful guidelines: handbooks, web-based platforms for management of communication actions. Make your own communication visible, to convince beneficiaries to do the same 15 seconds messages from the speakers: We are one continent, one people. We are here to help you make your life better Invest in your future. Tell us the story! Go ahead together! You want to grow – do it with the EU money! It’s all in your hands!

8 Workshop 1.C. Informing the public
Chair: Ana Paula Laissy, Adviser to the Director General, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Relations with the Civil Society Nation-wide publicity campaigns in little Estonia - Kristi Jõesaar and Annika Vilu, Ministry of Finance, Estonia Andalusian experience - María Goretti Minaya Llatas, Andalusia, Spain Polish experience, Integrated Regional Operational Programme – Rafal Nowak, Ministry for Regional Development, Poland ESF publicity campaign – films - Dominique Jeremiasz, Head of Communication, Ministry of Employment and Solidarity, France Experience of the Commission Representation in Budapest - Kinga Kollar, Commission Represenation in Budapest, Hungary Rapporteur: Christian Juliusson, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Lithuania, Sweden and Denmark Unit

9 1C Debate Estonia: Too many information sources? Road show visited 15 regions three times. TV programmes emphasised humour. Brochures included Russian versions very important in Baltic States. Andalusia: Interest has prolonged journal. Web page, clips and kids programmes. Poland: role of Euro Jargon. Importance of co-ordinating info points. Role of outsourcing? France: 45 second public service clips. Important simple homogeneous coherent messages. Hungary: Use of alternate channels. Joint communication plan with Government

10 1C Conclusions How co-operate with often sceptical, anti propaganda (esp. public sector) TV stations? Video on web? How far can ministries trust out sourcing? Important to share specifications with all parties. How to handle Jargon? (Ignore or simplify?) What is the cost of TV clips? How do we contact journalists who publish for free? Involvement of intermediate bodies. Important to keep the approach simple.

11 Workshop 2.A. Transparency – presenting beneficiaries and projects
Chair: Michael Niejahr, Head of Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development, Coordination of horizontal questions concerning the clearance of accounts Transparency in agricultural policy – Nacereddine Sekri, European Commission, Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development Transparency in Latvia – Sanda Rieksta, Ministry of Finance, Latvia Transparency for ESF in Flanders - David Mellaerts, ESF-agentschap Flanders, Belgium L’application du principe de transparence au sein du programme INTERREG III B Sud-ouest européen: avantages et outils - Isabelle Roger, Joint Secretariat INTERREG III B South West of Europe, Spain A project database on Internet - Malin Lingefelt, Information officer, Objective 2 South Sweden and Objective 2 Swedish Islands, Sweden Rapporteur: Dominique Be, European Commission, Directorate General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, ESF Coordination

12 2A Debate Q: How to safeguard the accurateness of project information on the internet presentation? A: Use databases linked to management systems Q: Are applications equally applied throughout the INTERREG programmes? A: Yes, as far as the B-strand is concerned Data protection issues? …managed at project level…

13 2A Conclusions Publication of final beneficiaries‘ lists on the internet does exist already to a quite sophisticated degree (Latvia; INTERREG, Flanders; South Sweden/Swedish Islands) while applications and content varies Challenge: attracting media by content and means is not an easy task as well as reaching the public and legitimising the action Important: Re-use existing information and make it searchable (database) Make it attractive and user-friendly by combining text and e.g. maps, photos Paper is not dead! Looking ahead: develop and provide common tools based on best practices

14 Workshop 2.B. Going beyond press releases: media relations, how should we tell the story?
Chair: Eva Kaluzynska, Spokesperson for Regional Policy, European Commission, Directorate General for Communication Building media relationships - Carleen Kelemen and Mark Yeoman, Objective One Partnership for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, UK Guidelines about the organisation of a press office on structural funds - Claudia Salvi, FORMEZ, Italy Putting the media in its place - Roger Hope, Communications Manager, Special EU Programmes Body, UK Experience of the Commission Representation in France - Maria Kokkonen, Head of Press Service, Commission Representation in France Rapporteur: Ulla Ropponen, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Territorial Co-operation unit

15 2B Debate Northern Ireland: Between awareness and commitment. Readers no longer trust press. Aim at commitment. Texting, blogging, silver surfers. Great lovers= great communicators(?) or vice versa Italy: Press offices in MA; cheap and effective but hard to control. Professional help. Human interest. Brief media. Simple language. Job and task description (maintain trustworthy, credible relations.) Cornwall: The facts (I wasn’t aware…) Regular, reliable, easy to access. Objective One delivers…Understand the news cycle… EC Rep in France: Direct contact with press. Local anchorage, visuals. Free press exploding. Find a hero. Use appropriate language. Day to day, real life stories.

16 2B Conclusions Images, anchorage, presence. How benefit from EU reps? Must analyse way message comes across. Employ a journalist! They know what is needed. The real news is word of mouth: what beneficiaries say. And don’t forget the memory/history. It is what gives the experience. Freeze the web. Maximise professional skills. Involve media from the start, train them. Monitor all activities. Remember people are the champions. Communicate unto others as you would be communicated unto… Work at project level, recognise differences between national/regional information needs. Make good use of the Reps networks.

17 Workshop 2.C. Structural funds and the internet
Chair: Raphaël Goulet, Head of Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Strategic programming and relations with the EP, the CoR and the EESC Using internet sites to inform potential beneficiaries and the public: the Greek experience - Ivana Doulgerof, CSF Management Organisation Unit SA, Greece Single Window eCommunication - Peter Farago, National Development Agency, Hungary Innovative ways of reaching out to stakeholders - Kirsti Mijnhijmer, Interreg IIIB/IVB North Sea Region Programme, Denmark – a regional one-stop-shop for EU-funding and networking – Wolf Born, Deputy Director, Mecklenburg–Vorpommern Information Office to the EU Rapporteur: John Walsh, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Thematic Development and Impact

18 2C Debate Can internet help us and how?
Is it the appropriate tool to communicate the Cohesion Policy to beneficiaries and general public? Should our communication strategy be web-based only? What changes in comparison to the previous programming period? Various uses of internet

19 2C Conclusions The internet cannot be a sole means of communication, it must be integrated in the whole communication strategy and supported by other information measures. Internet provides a medium to pass messages to different user target groups. Effective use requires that the target groups are clearly identified, clear messages and adapted materials are developed. Good internet sites can act as effective multipliers for implementing bodies. Once they realise this advantage, they can commit more to servicing the site. Internet allows and, at the same time obliges to be creative. Use it! Tips: All data must be presented in simple, jargon free language Keep texts short. Use subpages to develop details Keep information accurate and timely Ensure coherent design and clear navigation features Be aware that users browse webpages – use more photos and graphics

20 Workshop 3.A. Networks: working together on communication
Chair: Georgios Markopouliotis, Head of Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Communication, Geographical Coordination Growing with Europe - from Murcia via Brussels to Burgenland - Sonja Seiser, Regionalmanagement Burgenland GmbH, Austria Networking for success communication: past experiences for the future Plan - Anna Maria Linsalata, Regione Emilia-Romagna, Italy Practices and experiences from Europe Direct network - Claire Sarda Vergès, Europe Direct Pyrénées Languedoc Roussillon, France Networking in the UK and at the Community level - James Ritchie, European Social Fund Division, Department for Work and Pensions, United Kingdom Rapporteur: Charles White, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Information and Communication Unit

21 3A Debate Burgenland: adaptation of the “Crecemos con Europa” game: a kind of Regional Policy trivial pursuits. Humour, entertainment. Emilia Romagna: Involving all partners at an early stage in setting up. Goal oriented approach for new period. Languedoc: The achievements of Europe Direct in demystifying Brussels and relating message to everyday life. UK, ESF networks The importance of contacts in a multi level situation with players of all kinds. Aiming for real value added from the network

22 3A Conclusions You can save money by holding meetings!
Networking really helps but must be properly managed. Humour is as essential as correctly targeting the interest groups. Communication on the funds, its successes, stars and winners may not overcome. Euroscepticism, but constant openness and honesty can help. Evaluating success by hard indicators is probably not realistic. But the new period sees constant reporting. What more can the Commission do? Keep INFORM as informal as possible…

23 Workshop 3.B. Cooperation with the Commission Representations and other information relays
Chair: Thierry Daman, Head of Unit, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Information and Communication Unit Experience of the Commission Representation in the UK – Sarah Lambert, Commission Representation in London Experience of the Commission Representation in Germany – Barbara Steffner, Commission Representation in Berlin Europe Direct Hungary - Barbara Kerner, Europe Direct Baranya County/Pécs, Hungary Europe Direct Denmark - Niels Chresten Andersen, Head of Europe Direct Bornholm, Denmark Rapporteur: Wolfgang Petzold, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Information and Communication Unit

24 3B Debate Can Commission representations coordinate devolved EU programmes efficiently? Complicated terminology and institutional setting: Are Operational Programmes something for hospitals? Are toilets for tourists (EU financed) something to speak about? Can more be learnt from networks such as those coordinating e.g. former Community Initiatives? What happens once the funding declines? How to communicate the broader picture? Does the “solidarity“ narrative work? Do overall messages matter given the diversity of target groups?

25 3B Conclusions Information has to be part of the programme management; we have to know each other Most efficient: proactive and local communication based on results; Communication partnership with Commission Representations and information relays has become an obligation under the Implementing Regulation…but still needs to be put into practice; To be clarified: which mutual benefit exist between MAs and Commission representations? Involve with regional authorities managing the structural funds more often, earlier and based on strategic planning; Timing of programmes/projects matters;

26 Workshop 3.C. Crossing borders – communicating Cohesion Policy across Europe
Chair: Ann-Kerstin Myleus, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Territorial Co-operation Unit Understanding communication - A clear and consistent message - Henrik Josephson, The Interreg IVB North Sea Region Programme, Denmark Building the CENTRAL Community - enabling and monitoring beneficiaries - Claus Schultze, CENTRAL EUROPE Programme JTS, Austria Experience from INTERREG IIIA/TACIS: Telling the Lithuanian, Polish and Russian story - Giedrius Surplys, INTERREG Joint Technical Secretariat, Lithuania Rapporteur: Peter Fischer, European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy, Information and Communication Unit

27 3C Debate How to embed communication in the project implementation cycle: project leaders lose most of their energy on reporting to the authorities. How to engage message carriers at project level? : seminars, trainings, publicity tool kits, etc INTERREG programmes are often about producing knowledge. It is more difficult to communicate than infrastructural projects. Communicators’ tasks should be to sell it well, and also to accumulate it and promote, to allow for building it up, also at the Community level. In the territorial cooperation programmes, you need to rely in conveying your message to the media and public on project developers, since they know the local environment and can access media more easily

28 3C Conclusions Working and communication environment is very different for each programme, especially in the territorial cooperation = there is no one size fits all approach to communication. First task of communication manager is to root in the importance of communication in their own organisations. Communication adds value to your programme – always sell this message! (attracts more funding, better projects and better people to work for the projects and for your organisation). Do not confuse information with communication! Explain and tailor the right information!

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