The aim of clear writing is to ensure that language is clear, concise and consistent to improve the readability and translatability of documents. It is part of the EU administration’s efforts to promote effective communication and access to information for all EU citizens.
Well-crafted texts with a clear message and structure and an easily accessible layout appeal to most people. Readers understand the message clearly, which results in effective communication.
Translators also count as readers as they are writers who read texts in order to translate them. When authors draft clear texts, they help translators to convey their message successfully. It is with this in mind that the Translation Centre’s professional linguists have drafted a number of booklets containing tips for authors.
This booklet is intended for people who write EU texts in English for translation. It contains tips on how to structure your texts to make them clear, concise and easy to read.
Writers in a multilingual environment need to be aware that their texts will be translated, and nowadays this is likely to be by a machine. In this guide, we provide some recommendations for writing ‘machine-friendly’ texts.
Other useful links
- How to write clearly (Publications Office of the EU)
- 24 writing tips (European Commission)
- Recordings from the conference ‘Clear writing for Europe 2021’ (see also this article: An interinstitutional approach to clear writing)
- CdT review of the Joint Training Venture ‘Clear writing: write for your reader’: 'The reader rocks! Reading is voluntary'
- Interinstitutional Style Guide (Publications Office of the EU)