Crisis communication

During a crisis, effective communication is essential. As public bodies, we must be the source of accurate, relevant and timely information. 

We are here to help you work up your crisis communication plans.

On this page:


Learning and resources

Start learning at your own pace and build the skills you need, using our curriculum. You can also engage with our crisis communication blogs and resources.

Use our checklists for team leaders: PRIMER emergency planning checklists.

New guidance (9 September 2021)

Created by the GCS International team, and used by foreign governments, this new training aims to provide a toolkit for government and state communicators to use when responding to a crisis.


About crisis communication

The coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in 2020 and in the past year has shown the light on the need to communicate in a consistent, clear, and continual way. The COVID-19 report includes insights into the impact of the pandemic on communications professionals and some of the learnings.

COVID-19 Communications Advisory Panel report

Leaders and communicators must set aside time and resources to organise a well-thought-out, strategic plan.


Our standards

Emergency Planning Framework

Our practical tools and templates for communication professionals show you how to plan, develop and implement an effective response during a crisis, drawing on best practices across the public sector.

Our resources are focused on 6 critical stages which make up the GCS PRIMER framework for crisis communications.

PRIMER stands for:

  • Plan
  • Rehearse
  • Implement
  • Maintain
  • Evaluate
  • Recover

RESIST Counter Disinformation Toolkit

Our toolkit will help support the dissemination of reliable, truthful information that underpins our democracy.

RESIST stands for:

  • Recognise disinformation
  • Early warning
  • Situational Insight
  • Impact analysis
  • Strategic communication
  • Track outcomes