Tag Archives: Whitehall

Public Spending in the UK: Public Sector Debt

The debate on the future of the public finances and especially spending on public services has finally come to the fore after all the diversions of the past few months. What are the crucial questions that we should demand of … Continue reading

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Doing the BIS: Lord Mandelson’s New Empire

The two-year-old Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS) has been merged with the Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform (BERR) to create a new Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (DBIS or is it just BIS?).

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Will Hutton on Prime Ministerial power and public administration

In a great article in today’s Oberserver, Will Hutton reviews the origins of the current political crisis in the UK in the constitutional set-up which confers monarchical powers on Prime Ministers, something I have written about frequently here and in … Continue reading

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Blears: Joined-Up Jargon Queen Quits Government

Hazel Blears, Communities and Local Government Secretary in the Labour Government has announced her decision to leave the government on the eve of local government elections in England, in what is being widely seen as direct attack on PM Gordon … Continue reading

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The Art of Public Strategy – Geoff Mulgan

Geoff Mulgan’s new book on ‘The Art of Public Strategy’ is an riveting read, fizzing with insights and ideas. Mulgan played a big role in the Blair government, as a policy adviser and Head of the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit. … Continue reading

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Rate your doctor on-line? – another Whitehall-centric initiative

Even when the Government claims to be ’empowering patients’ it manages to do it in a Whitehall-centric way.

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Gizza Job? Jobcentres Plus stitched up by Minister.

“Gizza job”, those with long-enough memories will recall, was the catch phrase of the central character- Yosser Hughes – in Alan Bleasedale’s very dark BBC TV comedy ‘The Boys from the Blackstuff’ which aired in the middle of another big … Continue reading

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Government Learning – an oxymoron?

A new NAO Report – Helping Government Learn – sets out to encourage better policies and practice for ‘organisational learning’ in government.

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Recruiting civil servants efficiently?

One the NAO’s latest reports points to a small but significant area of inefficiency in Whitehall – recruitment:

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So What Would You Do?

In December I appeared as a witness before two Select Committees in the Westminster parliament: the Treasury Committee (TSC) which was responding to the government’s Pre-Budget Report; and the Public Administration Committee (PASC) which was investigating what standards of ‘good … Continue reading

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The Art of Performance

The major first report by the UK’s latest ‘think tank’, the Institute for Government led by well-known and outspoken former Permanent Secretary Sir Michael Bichard, bodes well for the future of the new body. It is a serious, measured and balanced … Continue reading

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Capable in a Crisis?

Sir Gus O’Donnell, head of the UK civil service, in a recent speech outlined why he thought the British civil service would perform well in the current financial and economic crisis. In an article – “Mandarin-tinted glasses” – published in Public … Continue reading

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