A white paper is an authoritative report or guide that informs readers concisely about a complex issue and presents the issuing body's
The initial British term concerning a type of government-issued document has proliferated, taking a somewhat new meaning in business. In business, a white paper is closer to a form of marketing presentation, a tool meant to persuade customers and partners and promote a product or viewpoint. White papers may be considered
The term white paper originated with the British government, and many points to the
White papers are a "... tool of participatory democracy ... not [an] unalterable policy commitment." "White papers have tried to perform the dual role of presenting firm government policies while at the same time inviting opinions upon them."
In Canada, a white paper is "...a policy document, approved by Cabinet, tabled in the House of Commons and made available to the general public." The "provision of policy information through the use of white and green papers can help to create an awareness of policy issues among parliamentarians and the public and to encourage an exchange of information and analysis. They can also serve as educational techniques."
White papers are a way the government can present policy preferences before it introduces legislation. Publishing a white paper tests public opinion on controversial policy issues and helps the government gauge its probable impact.