The 11th Public Administration forum on the topic of Digital Administration II: Communicating policies and communicating with the public, organized by the Institute of Public Administration and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Foundation, was held on 14 September 2016 at the Hotel Dubrovnik in Zagreb. The models and efficiency of communication of public policies and of political leaders with the public, as well as the identification of political communication priorities and their placement in the media were the main topics of discussion and the backbone of the presentations and deliberations of the Forum participants.
At the Forum, Dr. Marijana Grbeša Zenzerović from the Faculty of Political Sciences in Zagreb gave a lecture entitled “How executive authorities communicate in Croatia: Comments on a trailing country”, whose focus was the concept of mediatisation as a dependence on the media, or on the shaping of public policies in synergy with and in relation to the media.
In displaying “Political Priorities in Croatia 1990-2016: Policy and media agendas,” Dr. Daniela Širinić presented the Centre for Empirical Political Research’s research – a database of political priorities from 1990 to 2015. The database includes information on the content of the Croatian Parliament’s and the Government’s activities in the mentioned period, in correlation with an analysis of headlines from Večernji list from that period, in order to determine to what extent the topics presented to the public matched up.
After comments by communications expert Aleksandra Kolarić, president of the Croatian Public Relations Association, a discussion moderated by Mr. Tomislav Klauški, a journalist for 24 Sata, followed.
The Information Commissioner Dr. Anamarija Musa, editor of the Public Administration Forum, concluded the debate claiming that all observed segments of the public administration whose issues were processed in all 11 Public Administration Forums are in fact overlapping – the essence of the problem is identified in the lack of coordination, the lack of education and in public administration’s level of expertise, and often in the unwillingness to make substantial changes and to strive for personal development, both in the higher and lower governmental spheres.