- official report or guide
- concise or complex information of changes
- future planned laws
- government policy (detailed and authoritative)
- The government will be issuing a white paper later this week.
- The leader of the opposition demanded a white paper in his speech. He insists that the government set out the planned education cutbacks.
- A white paper is much needed concerning privacy issues in the aftermath of the recent data leaks from social media sites.
- The corporation issued a white paper yesterday, and we are waiting for the information to filter out to us.
- It took the management team hours to read and understand the latest white paper from the head office.
- Japan releases whitepaper on poverty alleviation to share the experience.
- Sony issues white paper on its history with innovation and intellectual property.
The term white paper originated with the British government, and Churchill’s White Paper (1922) is said to be one of the first famous examples.
Historically in Britain, government papers were colour coded. “White” signified public accessibility, and the term has stuck since then. Originally used by government offices, it is now used by large businesses and areas such as commerce and technology, for example.
White papers are issued to help the public, customers, or shareholders make educated decisions, understand an issue, and stay informed of changes.