Training: Plain English for Policy and Communications

Working with Brussels runs the risk of getting sucked into EU bureaucrats’ heavy, technical and complex writing style.  We use their language and jargon – and can even feel it is the only way that EU counterparts will listen to us.

But how appropriate is this for our audiences, who want us to be clear, accessible and engaging?

Even the bureaucrats will understand us easier and quicker if our communications and documents are concise, clear and using plain language.

That is why we are happy to invite Social Platform full members’ policy and communications colleagues to our two virtual trainings on plain language which Social Platform is organising with the plain English campaign:

Plain English for Policy

Tuesday, 27 October (14:00 – 17:00) & Wednesday, 28 October (14:00 – 17:00). The training is in two parts and you must be able to commit to both parts.


Plain English for Communications

Tuesday, 17 November (14:00 – 17:00) & Wednesday, 18 November (10:00 – 13:00). The training is in two parts and you must be able to commit to both parts.


Registration deadline for both trainings: Monday, 19 October, 17:00.

 About the training:


  • Recognise some traps a writer can fall into
  • Understand the features of a Plain English style
  • Realise the importance of a writing style – for you/your organisation
  • Use a style/tone appropriate for your audience
  • Save time and money by getting your message across first time

1st part – Core content

  1. Is your writing style appropriate? – Thinking about your audience
  2. Shortening sentences – Write with brevity
  3. Suggestions for clear writing – Write with clarity
  4. Active writing – Avoiding the passive voice
  5. Righting some wrongs – Don’t annoy your readers
  6. Revealing the action – ‘Nominalisations’

 2nd part – Applying Plain English Principles

Working in small groups, delegates will apply the 1st part’s PE principles to a piece of Social Platform/members’ writing, and then give feedback on the lessons for all delegates’ writing.

After the training each participant will receive a Course workbooks which will provide valuable post-course reference material as well as exercises for the course.

 Robert Bullard will deliver both trainings, here is more about the trainer.

As the number of participants for each training is limited (10 places for the policy training and 10 places for the communications training), we encourage you to apply as soon as possible. We are also aware that not everybody will be able to obtain a place in these training and to maximize the benefits for our full members, when selecting the participants, we will aim to ensure that as many full members as possible have an opportunity to participate in at least one of the trainings.

Social Platform is covering the cost of these trainings and our full members’ colleagues will participate for free.

Thank you very much for your interest in advance and we are looking forward to welcoming you at these excising and useful trainings!