Writing labs - coming to a government near you?

By GovInsider

US runs specialist team to help officials cut jargon, and communicate clearly.

Is it to boldly go, or go boldly? A new team in the US government has been launched to help officials answer this question and many more.

The Writing Lab is part of 18F, the federal government’s digital consultancy, and it exists to help members of the unit cut jargon from their writing and communicate clearly with citizens.

“The Writing Lab is a virtual writing center where anyone at 18F can get personalized writing and editing help from members of the content and outreach teams,” explains Kate Garklavs in a new blog post.

“Folks seeking help don’t need to make an appointment to talk to us,” she added they can file a request online and receive help via email. The team helps with grammar and style, improving the quality of writing and making it clearer for citizens to understand.

This is particularly useful in a tech arm, where writing can be overly complicated or rely on complex terminology. The lab was founded six months ago, has ten members, and plans to help other government agencies launch their writing labs this year.

This approach could potentially be used in Asian governments as they remodel their digital services to be more appealing to citizens.