The Joint Committee on Publications sets the printing standards for documents that are presented to Parliament. In the past these Standards provided guidance to government agencies, authorities and companies on issues such as format, the use of colour and illustrations, and type and size of paper. The Standards ensured that those documents presented to Parliament and included in the Parliamentary Papers Series conformed to the series’ requirements with a minimal cost to the author agency.
Impacts of technology and preferential methods of producing and accessing documents in alternative means have resulted in a shifting emphasis on the publication of electronic documents rather than the traditional hardcopy reports. The printed hardcopy format, however, is still very much pertinent. These factors have all made it appropriate to re-examine and re-evaluate the Standards.
The Committee is keen to ensure that government and parliamentary information remains accessible in whatever form that information is available. Having considered the evidence before it, the Committee recommends, through this report, a revised set of Standards that will provide author bodies with sufficient flexibility for their evolving needs, satisfy public demand for digital dissemination of information; and ensure the ongoing integrity of access parliamentary records.