The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on stakeholder engagement practices

COVID-19 caused a series of major changes in society, including in the way people communicate and engage with each other. The impact on communication and stakeholder engagement activities was particularly strong due to restrictions on the ability to hold both large public meetings and smaller in-person discussions to foster mutual trust and confidence. The changes which had to be made have had significant impacts in terms of milestones, internal resources, external stakeholders and relationships overall. The impacts were positive in some cases, negative in others.

Due to the magnitude and potentially long-lasting effect of these changes, the NEA Forum on Stakeholder Confidence (FSC) decided to investigate them and to reflect on lessons learnt, what changes will endure and what will likely return to the way it was before. To do so, a questionnaire was drafted at the end of 2022 and circulated to the FSC members in 2023. An analysis was then conducted.

The results are presented in this document.