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Open Access Government Communication as a Normative Practice

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Government Communication as a Normative Practice

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The network society is generally challenging for today’s communication practitioners because they are no longer the sole entities responsible for communication processes. This is a major change for many of them. In this paper, it will be contended that the normative practice model as developed within reformational philosophy is beneficial for clarifying the structure of communication practices. Based on this model, we argue that government communication should not be considered as primarily an activity that focuses on societal legitimation of policy; rather, it focuses on clarifying the meaning of the actions of the government. If the government can convincingly answer the question about the reason for their actions, societal legitimation will subsequently follow. Hence, it is argued that government communication is primarily linguistically qualified.

Affiliations: 1: Ede Christian University of Applied Sciences, Ede, The Netherlands, pjansen@che.nl ; 2: Ede Christian University of Applied Sciences, Ede, The Netherlands, jvdstoep@che.nl ; 3: Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands, henk.jochemsen@wur.nl

10.1163/23528230-08202004
/content/journals/10.1163/23528230-08202004
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The network society is generally challenging for today’s communication practitioners because they are no longer the sole entities responsible for communication processes. This is a major change for many of them. In this paper, it will be contended that the normative practice model as developed within reformational philosophy is beneficial for clarifying the structure of communication practices. Based on this model, we argue that government communication should not be considered as primarily an activity that focuses on societal legitimation of policy; rather, it focuses on clarifying the meaning of the actions of the government. If the government can convincingly answer the question about the reason for their actions, societal legitimation will subsequently follow. Hence, it is argued that government communication is primarily linguistically qualified.

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/content/journals/10.1163/23528230-08202004
2017-12-12
2018-06-25

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